Brand Studio 4: Week 6

In Class

Branding presentations for project 2.

Post your project 2 presentation and link to prototype in Slack channel.

Project 3: Book Cover Design

Design the dust jacket for a hard cover re-issue of On the Road by Jack Kerouac.

Create a book jacket design that incorporates the front and back cover, spine, and front and back inside flaps into a unified composition.

Start this project by producing hand-drawn thumbnail sketches and layouts to determine the best possible plan. Build a mock-up of the book jacket. The finished work will be wrapped around a hardcover book for presentation and it must include: publisher logo, inside flaps with text, back side must include peak interest summary, as well as barcode.

Any standard hardcover book dimension. Color.  Mock-up with all necessary items: bar code, publisher, etc.

Final project must be completed in InDesign. You will print a full-size version of your book cover, wrap it around an existing book, and photograph it at a professional level.

Process Part 1:

  1. Clearly define the brand of On the Road.

  2. Define the audience(s) for this quality re-issue of a classic book.

  3. Create mood boards for color, tone, illustration/photo style, etc.

  4. Research all previous covers.

  5. Pencil sketch at least 25 different concepts.

  6. Refine to 3 best concepts.

  7. Create those 3 concepts in the computer.

  8. Focus on typography. Find and pair appropriate typefaces. Try at least 25 different combos. Refine all the subtleties in the type: kerning, leading, heirarchy, color tones, etc.

  9. Refine at least one concept to completion: Front & back cover, flaps, spine.

Extra opportunities:

  • Design a logo and identity for the hypothetical book publisher.

  • Design the table of contents and chapter 1.

  • Design additional Jack Kerouac covers to make a book cover series.

Chipp Kidd
Paul Sahre
Jessica Hische
Award-Winning Book Covers
Book Series Design

For Next Week

  • Research: history of On the Road (which means read it, or know it very well: anecdotes, important phrases, historical significance, symbolism, hidden meanings, etc.)

  • Mood boards: general tone, other book covers, type, color — at least 3 different boards with 8+ images per board

  • Sketches: 25 book cover sketches in pencil, half size, at least front cover

  • Read Ogilvy on Advertising pages 1–44


Refine your work from project 1 and 2 so they can become portfolio pieces.

+ Journal: Print out your new design hero 1-pager and bring 10 copies to class.

Brand Studio 4: Week 5

In Class

Speak to your audience: Presentation and classwork


For Next Week

    Prepare final presentation for project 2:

        A 5-minute presentation which includes:

  1. A Keynote presentation with your process and thinking:

    1. Audience

    2. Mood boards

    3. Sketches

    4. Iteration on your ideas

    5. App logo

    6. App pages

  2. Clickable prototype with at least 10 pages.

+ Journal
PRINT 9 Copies: 1-page 8.5” x 11” page report with images
Subject: Design Heroes
Choose a design hero and explore their impact and approach on design:
Massimo Vignelli, Charles & Ray Eames, Wolfgang Weingart, Paul Rand, Paula Scher, El Lissistsky, Johnathan Barnbrook, Saul Bass, Herb Lubalin, Erik Spiekerman, Milton Glaser, David Carson.

Book recommendation: Org Design for Design Orgs

Extra credit:

1. Create a promotional page for your app

Examples: OakPartyPlayAffirmSquareup

2. Animate your logo

There are many examples at Product Hunt

Brand Studio 4: Week 4

In Class

Project One: Travel Better Poster critique.

Review your project 2 progress with partners. Ask what is working, not working. Record feedback.

For Next Week

Design your app: minimum of 10 screens with 2 completely different styles. Change the feeling completely, using colors, fonts, copywriting, imagery, button styles, etc.

+ Journal (post a link to your journal each week in Slack)

Extra credit:

1. Create a promotional page for your app

Examples: Oak, AffirmSquareup

2. Animate your logo

There are many examples at Product Hunt

Brand Studio 4: Week 3

In Class

Presentations for project 1: Travel Brand

Project 2 Brief: Craigslist Mobile

According to the Alexa rankings, Craigslist is the 99th most popular site in the world, 15th in the United States. However, their mid-90's HTML design aesthetic is becoming less relevant, and as a result, the site is beginning to lose credibility as a place to find quality listings.

Designers have long-debated ways to give Craigslist designs makeovers. However, a makeover must improve or maintain the information architecture (IA), enhance usability, and create a flow that users are not only comfortable with, but that they fall in love with.

Recently Bloomberg has arguably reverse-engineered their aesthetic to be more essential web-style, using bright blue as a link color, a clear grid, and Helvetica-looking fonts.

Your job: Design an unofficial Craigslist iPhone app which is positioned to a specific audience. (Look at that positioning link)

Richard Saul Wurman on Design Matters

  1. Define your audience

  2. Name your app

  3. Design the app icon

  4. Write the app description for the App Store

  5. Design at least 10 screens. Here are some examples:

    1. Onboarding flow

      1. Welcome screen

      2. Any informational screens

      3. Create an account

    2. Browsing

      1. Country/city overview

      2. Category view

      3. Browse: Product list

      4. Product detail view

    3. Create a posting

      1. Upload photos

      2. Write description

      3. Review posting


  • Design and prototyping can be done in Sketch, Studio, Figma, or Adobe XD. If done in Sketch, use InVision to create your prototype.

  • Only one iPhone size is necessary. You choose. Alternately, you could choose the iPhone X and deal with the notch.

The final deliverables for this project are due Tue Feb 19 in class:

  1. A 5-minute presentation which includes:

    1. A Keynote presentation with your process and thinking:

      1. Audience

      2. Mood boards

      3. Archetype

      4. Sketches

        1. App logo

        2. App pages

      5. Iteration on your ideas

    2. Clickable prototype with at least 10 pages.

For next week

  • Moodboards

  • Audience

  • Positioning

  • Name

  • Logo sketches

    • 5 different options, then refine. Try to sketch 50 variations.

  • Sketches of 10 screens. At least two different concepts.

+ Journal (post link to Slack)

Brand Studio 4: Week 2

In Class

  • Present your chosen travel brand

  • Present your problem-solving travel brand

  • Brand vs Identity vs Logo

For next class

  • Touch points for presentation:

    • Your travel brand

      • Name

      • Mission: Problem that it solves

      • Singular Idea: 1 sentence

      • Look and feel: mood board, color palette

      • Sketch poster layout – at least 5 directions

      • Sketch logo – at least 5 directions

    • 3-ad poster campaign

      • Logo

      • Copy

      • Headline

      • Supporting message

      • Call to action

      • (Image)

  • + Weekly Journal




Brand Studio 4 : Week 1

Week 1

In Class

  • What is your why

  • Why are you here

  • Design thinking exercise: redefine the travel experience

  • Reflections on branding

For Week 2

1: Present an existing travel brand

You will deliver a brief standup on a travel brand. Show different aspects of the brand, the brand promise, audience, the problem that the brand solves, the brand personality, and show examples of how the brand portrays itself in various media. 

You may choose from these examples, or choose your own: 

  • Clear

  • Hipmunk

  • World Nomads

  • AirBnb

  • Couchsurfing


  • Duolingo

  • AirAsia

  • ExOfficio

  • Uniqlo

2: 5 min presentation of your brand

  • Clearly state the problem your brand solves

  • Show how your idea solves the problem

  • Position statement (why you’re different, in less than 1 sentence)

  • Keywords (3 main keywords)

  • Name (5 options)

  • Mood boards (5 images for each keyword)

  • Reference brands (5 comparable identities)

  • Define your audience

3: Process Book

Create an online forum to track your progress each week. Can be Squarespace, Wordpress, or other. This will eventually be whittled down to be your portfolio book, but for now, it will be your weekly process journal. 

Each week, create a post about your progress in this class with at least 300 words and 3 images. Recommended, do the same for each of your classes.



Here are some hand-picked typeface recommendations from Adobe Typekit, by awesome Colorado designers.


SOS Media 

Gastromond – Super chunky, fun and elegant serif.

Lapture – A beautifully chiseled serif by JAF. The display bold italic is especially refined.

Trump – Condensed sans serif by Canada Type. Perfect for huge headlines.

Basic Sans – Great all-around sans serif for daily use, by Latinotype.

Ernestine – Highly legible slab serif with a funky personality. 

Quatro Slab – Robust, hinted slab serif with plenty of weights.

Good Apples

Eskapade – The blackletter weights are cool but not free.

Dapifer – The heavier stencil weights.

Sign Painter : House Slant – Classic

Robot Mono – Could be fun to play around with a monospace for some futuristic post-apocalyptic vibes

Azo Sans Uber – The chunky weights 

Nuvo – Humanist sans

Type Wolf

Ambroise – A high-contrast serif from French foundry Typofonderie (web only)

Maiola – A calligraphic serif from TypeTogether

Grad – A serif with some personality by Mark Simonson of Proxima Nova fame.

Cast Iron Design

Supria Sans – A friendly sans serif with a little personality from Hannes von Döhren

Acumin – A rational sans serif, well drawn, very extensive.

Aktiv Grotesk – Even more rational, by Dalton Maag.

Hobeaux Rococeaux – For funky display, by James Edmonson (OH no Type Co)

Fit – Just for fun, by David Jonathan Ross (DJR). 

Jeff Walters

Adobe Caslon – Perfect serif for typesetting a lot of copy and mixing the faces.

Museo Slab – Great slab for use on the web for headlines and good type mixing with a sans.

Futura PT – Sans serif. Useful for ads & marketing.


Grading Rubric


Each of the 5 class projects is worth 15 points.
5 points: Ideation, creative thinking
5 points: Aesthetics, compositional sophistication
5 points: Technical execution
Work is graded in you class presentation.
For late work, 1 point is removed per day.

Weekly journal is worth 10 points.
5 points: Keeping current with weekly updates
5 points: Effort, aesthetic, technical execution

Attendance is worth 15 points.
1 point for every day attended
If you need to miss a day, you must communicate ahead of time or have a verifiable extenuating circumstance.