Beer and wine labels, logos, seals and packaging have always intrigued me. There’s a story, a scene, a flavor and an audience in all of it to capture with shape, line and color. This year I’ve been fortunate to design two items on my bucket list – first, a film festival poster (Boomtown) and now a beer company logo. And not just any beer company logo, no. This is one from my hometown. (*See below for more commentary and *click images to view larger)
The Neches Brewing Company is a delicious idea and beautiful adult beverage carefully concocted for years by my friend, Tyler Blount. A beer connoisseur and tactician of taste, suds and hops, Blount has developed the recipe(s) to please his finely tuned palate. He developed the name on our home town and the mighty river running through the town (Port Neches) and surrounding area of Southeast Texas. He wanted to pay homage to the place he knows, the people, the history, and give the locals something to rally around: good craft beer! Rolling things out for an event earlier this year, I had the utmost pleasure of working up a logo for him. I can’t say I’ve ever had an easier, more peaceful, exciting, and rewarding project than this one with Tyler. Seriously. He started me off with strong ideas and preferences, but nothing strict; he was completely open to whatever direction I wanted to go and didn’t push or shove. I’d love to say I whipped this up effortlessly while sipping some suds, but I can’t. Tyler teed me up and let me swing, and he was as cool a customer as I’ve ever had.
The design is sort of a badge or emblem as it is enclosed by a pentagon shape. Silly as it may sound, I liked this particular shape because it’s home plate (baseball), and this shape serves as the foundation for the logo design; the name Neches is from the hometown and the foundation for which this brand was built. Corny, but we gotta start somewhere, right? Well, that’s where I started. The red ribbon isn’t a very dark red, almost a bittersweet orange tint to it to give a vintage feel – an element that Blount requested early on. The red ribbon allows the NECHES to be very pronounced and easily, quickly read. The waves of water blend into bubbly, foamy beer. Hops, barley, and oil derricks adorn the sides for a play on the ingredients and the local industry. The centerpiece up top is a circle with a ship’s wheel inside. Again, the colors are a blue-teal, vintage sweet red and a gold/yellow on white for a retro touch. Among my goals for this was to create a unique, regional brand that was very descriptive of the landscape and vibe, but also to make it professional enough and a retro feel to have a look of familiarity; as if you may have seen this logo on an old beer bottle in your granddad’s attic or something; like it belongs. This project is one of my absolute favorites in my catalog and I’m very proud to have played a role in rolling out Neches Brewing Company. Hope you like it and the display images here, and I urge you to canoe down the Neches River some time in the 93 degree heat and 92 percent humidity on your way to a tasty, cool craft beer from Tyler Blount. Raise your bottle, raise your glass, give a toast to Neches and shake your a$$…please drink responsibly.