Building an identity with unique tools for a chinese startup
Raven Tech, 2015
Raven Tech is a Chinese tech startup that creates unique chat apps with and has a strong focus on its inner culture, integrating art and culture into its working environment. They wanted a somewhat mysterious and iconic visual identity, which would capture their non-conformative and explorative vibe. We travelled to Beijing and spent four months in Raven, working with Raven Tech designers and developers to create and integrate the identity, as well as train the team on how to use it effectively and creatively. The goal was to create a bold, yet simple visual identity. So we created a visual system with the triangle as a basic building. The decision to use such a basic shape made us focus on its expressions and combinations - to create a unique visual environment.
The triangle symbolizes a raven in flight and the formation is a flock. A triangle can be a separate unit, as well as an alternative to a pixel in a triangular grid. Units can crumble and multiply themselves infinitely and randomly within themselves, acting as fractals. Graphic elements, such as icons and patterns, are using the same grid, but unlike the logo, they are not limited to the triangle shape. With Raven Tech designers we experimented with different animation styles, from smooth animations to glitchy transformations. Several unique digital tools were developed for the creation of the visual identity elements, they are available for the designers to use online, together with the online identity guidelines:
Logonator A tool that randomly generates logo compositions with variable levels of complexity and detail.
Tribrush A paintbrush-like tool with a variable trianglular grid that lets you draw elements freely, with a mouse.
Convertor A tool that filters bitmap images into triangular compositions with adjustable complexities.
Vinput A tool that uses your webcam and converts the image into triangles in real time. With adjustable details.
The project also included setting up the opening exhibition in Raven Tech's new gallery space (an opportunity to show the identity possibilities and served as a training for designers) as well as setting up the web-based identity guidelines, which included all digital creation tools.