Our identity journey
It was maybe two years ago when we realized Light-it’s brand identity needed a 180º twist, as it wasn’t representing us anymore. The first step was putting all our ideas together to bring to life a new and solid brand style. Defining it wasn’t easy at all, as people might think, there where many factors to consider. But we focused on our brand values, purpose, mission, and vision.
In our style discovery process, we talked continuously about our team, our innovation purpose, and the fact that causing an impact is one of our core values. Accordingly, we agreed that bringing characters to the table seemed like an excellent idea. Creating characters helped build and strengthen our brand identity while reinforcing community, exchange, and exploring concepts.
Long story short, we defined a style, gave it a direction, and created the illustrations for our brand identity.
How do we keep brand consistency in our visual language?
Back then, I was the only designer and illustrator at Light-it, but, as the design team grew to four people, we realized we had more than one illustrator on board, and we began to question how we could stay consistent in style but efficient in production.
The solution: A smart illustration library
As product designers, we created a solution that can be highly beneficial for any brand, at any scale, anywhere in the world. Inspired by Humaaans, an illustration library made by Pablo Stanley, we sorted all the illustrations' elements into categories and built a smart illustration library. It's a vast collection of reusable components from which you can create characters, simple compositions, storyboards, illustrations, and much more.
Why do we call it "smart"? We call this library smart because it allow us to create illustrations fast and within brand guidelines. Scenery elements can exist on their own and build together little scenes. All pieces are created as components and variants in Figma, so one does not have to be an illustrator to create beautiful shots, nor have a paid software. Creating custom brand illustrations has never been easier and faster!
We ended up basing the characters and elements on simple shapes, with mixed perspective and gentle metaphors, which helps us to bring interest, evoke imagination, and engage emotions. The library now contains more than 100 elements of scenery, so it lets us design whole scenes and change and adjust them as we please.
Now tasks aren't delayed because we don't have an illustrator who is currently free. Anyone on our team can immediately create an illustration by themselves, which leaves our marketing department over-excited.
Being innovative as a value
Light-it keeps growing, but it doesn't mean that we're losing our identity. We see massive potential in this tool for businesses that take their branding seriously. Creating brand books, design systems, and illustrative guidelines is an excellent step towards brand development. However, in case you want to approach it innovatively and save time and money, it is worth thinking about creating a unique and customized smart illustration library that will function on any level.