Back in December Droptree Productions decided they needed to update their look, and I was invited to submit some ideas based on their existing concept. It was described to me like this…
‘We know we want something illustrated, and we’d like to have something that can live big and beautiful on say, a website but can also be simplified and shrunk down to live on a business card or header somewhere else. Because our office is out in the country, and operates somewhat like a clubhouse for 30 year old dudes (along with the fact that our name is Droptree), we think that having a treehouse as a logo would be perfect.’
With that to go on I got to work.
I quickly roughed out some concepts that played up the Tree Fort/DIY/Boys-With-Toys angle.
My first concept was based on a photo I had seen of an old car that was stuck in a tree. The tree either grew up under it or it had crashed into it somehow. Regardless it had been there for several decades and kids were playing in it. I made the car a tank instead for some reason. Probably because I thought it looked cool.
This one was the favorite. The thrown-together look of the fort and things like the tire swing, bikes, and can-on-a-string conveyed the feeling we were going for. The text in the branches and roots of the tree did not. We decided to press ahead with this as a starting point. A couple more attempts at refining the Tree Fort. Using negative space for the grass came in at this point and stayed until the final version. We were also trying to incorporate the company name into the design without having it get lost in the drawing. You can see it off to the side here, from when we were still playing with some hand drawn type designs.
The idea of a flag with a simple emblem started to show up about this point. We felt the need for some kind of simple design which the eye could focus on, since the tree fort was going to be heavily detailed.
The setting sun element of the design came in at this point.
We felt that the Tree Fort was looking a little to juvenile and was getting away from our original intent. We knew we wanted to have a funky looking tree house, but we also wanted it to look like adults could actually work inside of it.
This next concept was pretty close, but it was a little too big and the slanted roof didn’t quite work.
The top deck was a little cluttered and the stair case didn’t read very well so we got rid of it and replaced it with a ladder. We all liked where the design was at this point, and it was given the go-ahead to become the final version of the Tree Fort.
You can see in the final version of the Tree Fort ended up having a log logo on the flag. Like everything else that took some development. We wanted something simple that could live separately from the Tree Fort.
At first we thought it would just be an ‘X’ made out of wood. I tried to create a ‘D’ or a ‘D’ and a ‘T’ out of a wood wheel. While the ‘D’ didn’t survive, the wood wheel as a whole was approved.
And that’s it! Getting it all ‘just right’ was a bit more of an involved process than I think anyone was expecting, but the designs are better for it. I am proud of the work and I know they are too. All I need now is to have it on a beer cozy and I’ll be a happy man!