Combining fun and loving care in one brand

watermarkHow does one show loving care, fun and professionalism all in one brand identity? That is what Paul and Jolene Moran, who were building a new assisted living facility with a resort-style theme, needed answered.

They built their first facility almost twenty years ago, when Jolene’s grandmother needed a place to live. Not finding anything that felt like home with the loving care they wanted for Jolene’s grandmother, Paul and Jolene decided to build their own facility. Now, they were venturing into a new building style, with added fun, and a future in franchising.

I set out to answer the above question and undertake Century Oaks, Inc. new look and image.

Because the art needs to illustrate the story, I begin at the beginning of that story, by meeting with the client and learning, absorbing who they are, where their business is, and where they want to go. And when working with a writer, the written story becomes an integral part of the design development. In this case, the writer, Judy Keneklis, wrote an outline of the main points with headlines and subheads, a solid, creative base to move forward from. The art and the copy work together to develop the image.

Color says so much visually and psychologically that as shapes and ideas were swirling in my head, I began analyzing color palettes. For added impact, I choose colors based on their meanings. For the first color palette, I put together shades of brown, gold, green and orange. Here are the meanings:

Brown: wholesome; steadfast; simplicity; friendly; dependability; health

Gold: cheerful; joyous; richness

Green: growth; renewal; balance; stability; harmony; health

Orange: energy; warmth; stimulant of emotions and appetite

color palette 1
The first palette contains four warm, earthy colors

These four colors also work obviously well with the name Century Oaks. Next, I sought a color palette that had meaning tied in with the combination of the colors. To give the image a current look, I started with the Pantone 2010 color of the year (Turquoise) and then chose the color combination most suited to the meaning of what Century Oaks is all about. This combination and its meaning are:

Turquoise, gold, bright purple and deep tan: innovative; spontaneous; practical; trustful; insightful; calming

Color palette 2
This palette is fun and friendly

Next came combining the colors with photos and shapes to continue the emotional feel. Soft yet fun swirls gave the shapes lively movement, and photos of people, close up, were used to bring the viewer into the picture. At first, these were two different ideas, but because the client loved them both, the two styles were melded to be used in conjunction with one another. See the two initial layouts below:

Century Oaks ads

Century Oaks logoFor the logo, I combined the botanical movement of the designs with an oak leaf and acorn. This logo is slightly reminiscent of a wax stamp on an envelope, making what it represents a bit of personal treasure. The green is the same green used in the first color palette above, and the brown is a darker brown to allow it to stand out and remain legible in 2-color uses.

In the ad layouts above, one design is soft and warm, full of love and caring, the other is fun and spirited. In some instances, the styles are used separately, however the ads were changed for continuity and branding, with both styles using the same fonts, the same composition of photos, the same overall layout, and the gold used in each palette is the same. In the next piece, I combined both styles to give the viewer a complete “picture”  of what Century Oaks is all about. This brochure wraps the viewer as closely into the Century Oaks experience as  a 2-dimensional piece possibly can.

Brochure, closed
Here is the brochure "closed", ready to be opened

Brochure, openThis overall image is being used throughout Century Oaks’ print pieces, will be used in their web site, and even the radio spots contain the same feel. The writing for the pieces was handled beautifully by Judy Keneklis of Keneklis Business Writing, and she truly tells the story of the care and commitment that Century Oaks has for their residents — along with their ability to keep fun in life! I’m thankful for Judy’s collaboration and for the input from Paul and Jolene. If you’d like to see the new building for yourself, head on down to Oshkosh on Saturday, June 12, from 11-4, or Sunday, June 13 from 10-2 for a tour. Bring your appetite because there will be free food, and fun for the family. And, you could win a TV!