Durham Brand & Company

Durham Brand & Company - student project


My name is Austin Dunbar and I'm a designer located in the Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati area. For the purpose of this project, I felt that leveraging this oppurtunity to create an idea or brand that I could tangilby execute was my primary goal.  As most of us know, finding the time or energy outside of our daily client work is sometimes hard and this became a perfect exercise to start putting thoughts to paper.  I knew I wanted to create an apperal line and from the preliminary descriptive word list exploration, Durham Brand & Company was born.

Durham Brand & Company - image 1 - student project

Durham Brand & Companys' look, tone and feel is derived from classic 'Americana' CPG labels from bourbon, cigars and medicine paired with a contemporary boldness of bravado found in modern workwear and American traditional tattoos.  This mix of bold imagery, strong typography and an assertive tone of voice expresses the brands straight foward attitude that is lively and loud.

Below is a collection of images that were used to springboard the brands visual experience:

Durham Brand & Company - image 2 - student project

Durham Brand & Company - image 3 - student project

Durham Brand & Company - image 4 - student project

When sketching various logo treatments for the brand, I found interest in the idea of having an expressive, modular identity platform similar to Vans, Carhartt and other lifestyle brands.  I first concentrated on the lettering for DB&Co and then built out different ways it would look and live.  Below are various executions that could be applied to a shirt or bag, tag label, bandana, etc.  I wanted the dialog to be heavy but have postive undertones that touch on morals and bettering oneself.

Durham Brand & Company - image 5 - student project

A raven carrying a shattered miners lamp with light pouring out symbolized the concept good vs. evil, and letting good break out and prevail.  Concentrating on bold imagery with supporting concepual text became a focus of the brand exploration: 

Durham Brand & Company - image 6 - student projectDurham Brand & Company - image 7 - student project

I also wanted to create a 'type flash sheet' similar to how tattoo artists create tattoo flash sheets to choose from.  This sheet was made for extra collateral to further pronounce DB&Co's tone of voice.

Durham Brand & Company - image 8 - student project

Any thoughts or feedback would be appreciated!  There are more executions I'm working up, but wanted to share a peak in the tent to what I've been working on!


Austin Dunbar
Senior Designer