Monday, March 11, 2013

Mixed Plate: Papa's Got a Brand New Blog (sort of)

You've probably noticed the recent tinkering-around on the blog, and then a sudden SHAZAMWOW of a new logo. You might easily think, did this happen overnight?? You would be right. I pretty much cranked this out over a 24 hour period. Giving the blog a total overhaul has always been on my to-do list, which I don't know if that will ever happen because I'm afraid of totally hosing everything and losing my posts, but a less-structural, more cosmetic "freshening up" of Wasabi Prime has always been a reasonable task that I have dutifully placed on the absolute bottom of my List of To-Do's. We watched the last episode of House of Cards on Netflix, so clearly, everything I wanted to do was complete, so it was time to get my booty shakin' on this blog rebrand. Tally-ho!

A Brady Bunch of co-branding on the Prime - design by... ME!

The saying is 100% true: We Put Ourselves Last. Especially when it's our job to do stuff like this. I'm doing graphic design and illustration work every day -- which I'm very grateful to do -- but when I'm done with other people's work, going to work for myself sounds about as appealing as a root canal with a rusty drill. I've been wanting to give this blog a refresh for quite a while, since I really hadn't done much with it since I moved it from the now-extinct Vox blogging platform to Blogger, back in 2009. Since then, a lot of things have changed -- more avenues for social media, the emergence of tablets and the use of smartphones for viewing sites, and as a result of that hardware, I think overall design aesthetic has had to simplify a little more, knowing material would have to be readable on such a wide range of devices. Oy -- work talk, I apologize. But that's what has been swimming in the back of my brain-skull over time, just trying to pick the right time to kick-start this blog refresh.
New banners, coming soon to a blog right in front of you - design/photography by Wasabimus Prime
The simplified logo was envisioned as an abstract plate -- a blank canvas full of possibilities. I put together a logotype with opposing styles of fonts that I felt were a reasonable representation of the blog -- simple, but a home-spun, home-grown, home-skillet, yo. But I didn't want there to be an empty plate, as it were, so I thought of a few general themes I could play with, making a family of co-branded logos that would represent different things like drinkables, fresh herbs/ingredients, whole grains and spices, as well as general dry goods or even premade items. 

Pantry rummage time! - Photos by Wasabi Prime
I decided to incorporate photography with the banner, and taking a cue from Google's homepage, I thought I'd mix things up now and then, swapping out the banner art on a regular basis. Seasonal items, a theme if I can make it work -- I don't even know yet, the concept continues to evolve. But you can see from this very ghetto photo shoot at my desk, chasing what little daylight was left, I was photographing every random ingredient I had in our pantry and spice rack on a giant piece of white cardboard. Pretty slick, right?

Behind the scenes at the Batcave - Photos by Wasabi Prime
And so the logos were designed, I put together a new palette of colors and incorporated it all into the social media-verse, updating Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus. I must say, I hadn't tinkered around Twitter in a while, but I'm liking the user interface updates and that banner photo. As for Google Plus -- just when I got used to it being one format, they literally just changed it, so I need to go back and revise the banner/profile setup. And oh yeah, the banner height is crazy-narrow. OK, scratch that, it's just crazy-HUGE. At this moment I have no idea what the hell Google Plus is doing, so stay tuned to this developing social media development...

Freshening up the Twitters and the Facebooks (Google Plus, too!) - hasty redesign by Yours Truly
I realize this isn't a post about anything you can shove in your pie-hole and om-nom-nom, but I can speak to the benefit of just letting creativity smack you in the face when it gets around to it. It may have taken forever and a day to give Wasabi Prime a makeover, but for whatever reason, inspiration hadn't struck me. But I knew this was the idea to go with when I powered through everything within the span of a day and felt like I was in a good place for the blog-road ahead. The blog remains the same, it's just got a shiny new outfit. I hope you like the updates and continue the journey ahead with me, wherever that may lead!


  1. Neat! thanks for behind the scenes look! I love the idea of incorporating a simple photo into the header. might have to consider doing that on mine...

    Looks great! Bravo

  2. Although the re-brand may have taken *what seemed* like forever to you, I really like how you took a holistic approach to the project, much like you would with a client. Also kudos for going the extra mile thinking about multi-platform readability!


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