Get excited, Reader! Tomorrow is the day that my new product, Scribbles, finally launches. 🚀
I'll be back in your inbox tomorrow with more on that, but for now I want to give you my thoughts on another recent launch: the new design system for fintech company, Wise. (Plus there's some videos you should save to your 'Watch later' list near the end of the issue!)
A new design system for Wise (is forest green the new black?)
I've been using Wise for many years to receive payments from international clients (that's an affiliate link FYI! I'd highly recommend the service if making international transfers is something you need to do too).
They launched a new design system last week with a lovely new site wise.design where you can check out all of the new features of this brand refresh, but there's three things I specifically wanted to make note of.
1. The cool display typeface inspired by international type
While for regular headings and body text they're using what feels like the internet's most common font – Inter – Wise have a custom-designed typeface called Wise Sans to use for punchy headings and branded moments.
The font has a large range of glyphs to add character and special touches to the standard sans serif. See some of them in use below (note the N, Y and first E in "Anywhere")
About these glyphs Wise say:
2. The wonderfully layered "tapestries"
I audibly gasped when I clicked in to the Tapestries section of the design system site and saw this gorgeously detailed image.
You know I'm a huge fan of bringing organic touches to the web, and this image feels so organic in the texture it adds.
I really love how these look when used with a typography mask, or as a background in a shape.
But I'm not sure I'm such a fan of it applied to 3D illustrations like we see below. Not because the texture doesn't look good applied in this way but because this style of 3D illustration doesn't quite feel like it gels with the blocky type and tonal color palette.
I'm sure as we see more of these illustrations make their way into the world they won't feel so out of place though.
3. The "I feel like I've seen this before?" color palette
Wise has ditched their previous brand color "banky blue" and gone all in on green.
The forest green combined with bright green looks extremely cool, as do the high contrast secondary colors.
But is it just me, or is forest green (especially combined with a dark purple/mauve) showing up a lot in color palettes recently?
Check out these examples from Linktree, Oyster and Zapier.
Are we firmly in a new era of "tech company color palette"? Gone are the bright primary colors on white, gray or black backgrounds and in are tonal palettes that bring more color – in both dark and light tones – to our browsers?
This will be interesting to keep an eye on for sure! Do any other forest green brand applications come to mind for you?
Huge congrats to everyone at Wise who worked on this brand refresh! It looks stunning, is super high quality and as a marketing designer I particularly loved the effort put in to crafting assets to present the brand to the world!
Read up on all the details right here
Creating the ConvertKit brand guidelines
We started working with a new design agency at ConvertKit recently and naturally we needed to bring them up-to-speed with our brand. Our visual brand has been in somewhat of a state of flux for a while now and our previous brand guidelines were woefully out of date!
Now I have to be honest: I don't love the process of visual branding. Designing logos, picking colors, documenting it all... I'd just rather spend my time applying a brand to assets!
Turns out, I'm not alone in disliking the brand guideline creation process:
After weeks of procrastinating, our Senior Brand Designer and I tackled updating them in a sprint day 💪 I vlogged the process and show you the finished result in this video.
Let me know if you enjoyed this style of video! I wanted to show a mix of the realities of the process as well as the slick end result and there's a few more design projects I plan on applying the concept to in coming months.
And tell me: do you enjoy creating brand guidelines? Reply to this issue and let me know!
From struggling artist to million-dollar launches: How a designer grew her business
The latest documentary in the I Am A Creator series was launched on Friday and once again it is packed with relatable moments, inspiration and insights into how a professional creator runs their business.
This episode features Bonnie Christine, a surface pattern designer running a multi-million-dollar business.
I highly recommend watching this one on your lunch break for some creative inspiration not just for your design work, but for your career too.
That's all for now. I'm so excited to share more with you about Scribbles tomorrow on launch day!
See you then,