This project was a little bit of a brand refresh. When Michael Manfredonia came to me for a label design for his first whiskey release, he already had a simple logo and rough version of the bottle label another designer had made. However I wasn’t seeing the connection between the logo and his brand. I pitched Michael on a total logo redesign as well as starting the label from scratch, and he agreed.
The goal was to create a brand that felt subtly Colorado, but was not too over the top. We also wanted to explore the mining aspect of the company name.
I ended up creating a logo that accomplishes both in a simple mark that can easily be applied across the brand. I paired it with some topographic and rock textures, and an outdoorsy deep orange and green color palette.
After designing the brand, I got to work on the first bottle label, which is a Rye Malt Whiskey. I was able to inject the brand developed into the label to give it a rugged character that fits well for a Colorado distillery.
I was also able to work on some graphics and collateral for the launch party in Longmont, Colorado. And best of all, I was able to attend the party and celebrate with Michael. Michael did an excellent job using the branding created to make signs, banners, and even a pop-up tent. It was incredible to see the brand come to life and to hold the bottles in person.
The brand typography was a great collaboration with Michael. He had a vision in mind for the main brand font, and I was able to supplement that with a sturdy subheading font called Rift.
The colors chosen were also aiming for Michael’s vision of a green and orange brand. I ultimately got that color combo to work well by making the orange a bit rustier, and adding in some green variations to provide the brand some depth.
It’s exciting helping a business start from basically the beginning, and to help craft their presence in the market and give them a real identity they can use for many years to come. I’m looking forward to future bottle releases from Dark Iron and am excited to be a part of the visual direction for the company.