As a prevalent reality in my life, and something I haven’t quite been able to shake, I spend a fair amount of time contemplating the perfectionism that haunts me. I’ve pretty much come to terms with it, and I don’t necessarily see it as a weakness, per se, but I find it interesting to try to evaluate what specifically triggers it and how it plays with my other traits as a creative.
We started this mini series talking about the importance of styling your brand and the role that a visual strategy plays, followed by exploring the visual side of your brand and building an inspiration board in the second week, where we took to Pinterest in order to build our inspiration boards. Now here we are in our final week of the series.
This week, we’re going to talk about how to translate what you’ve discovered in the first two steps into an actionable strategy, the various elements of a visual strategy, and where the details may show up for your own brand.
We've already spent some time diving into what a visual strategy is, the importance of styling your brand and the role that a visual strategy plays in the first part of this little three part series, so now it's time for the next step in the visual strategy development process: exploring the visual side of your brand and building an inspiration board.
This is when it starts to get really fun, as I’m essentially giving you permission to play on Pinterest in an attempt to start collecting visual inspiration that will help you start to define your own visual strategy. Always one of my favourite parts of the process, this is when we start to see themes emerge, details take shape and your vision begin to materialize.
A visual strategy provides guidance as to how to style your brand and the framework within which to share your story. It helps you figure out what to share and how to share it. It helps define the look of your brand and translates that into a suite of imagery that can be used to showcase and enhance your brand, whether it shows up on your website or blog, in your social media content, or through other brand collateral.
Sometimes when we’ve been working in, or on our own brand for so long, we forget to continue to challenge ourselves, or to really think about our overarching brand strategy. Or perhaps some of you out there are just thinking about launching your brand for the first time ever. Either way, having a visual strategy to guide your brand is great at any stage, and sometimes in the haste of moving forward we skip over some of those nitty gritty details that make our brands magical.
Truth be told, I had no idea there was such a thing as vinho verde before I started dating Jason, who's half Portugese. But a few family lunch gatherings later, I had been introduced to the lovely wine that has a slight green tinge and just the perfect amount of subtle fizz, and it's since become one of my favourite summer sippers. Light enough that you don't feel guilty pouring glass with lunch, and bubbly enough that it still feels like you have something to celebrate. And because summer, Sundays and sangria go hand in hand, it was only natural that I would eventually start playing around with a vinho verde sangria recipe.
I’ve recently started to notice myself falling towards a tendency to disconnect from social media on the weekends. Call it a summer schedule, or maybe it’s just a need to step away from the overwhelm that is a very real part of my week’s at this point. But it’s a little more than that as well. My relationship with social media has changed, and not necessarily for the better.
This got me thinking about the bigger picture. About this love/hate relationship with social media that’s started to develop in a very real way for me recently. It’s started to feel like this necessary evil, and as it has definitely led to some frustration and anxiety for me over the past little while, I wanted to unpack that a little.
This positive aspect to dreaming is at the core of the Studio Bicyclette brand. I believe that letting your imagination run wild and dreaming big is essential to running a creative business, to finding the inspiration that propels you forward and coming up with those ideas that light you up.
But there also comes a time when you need to set aside the dreams and focus on the “doing”. Because let’s be honest, as much fun as the dreaming part is — the brainstorming sessions, the inspiration gathering, the research, the note taking, the planning — it only takes you so far before you need to get into the actual work.