Re-branding Howl at the Moon
or my Type and Design’s rebranding project, I chose to redesign Howl at the Moon’s logo. Howl at the Moon, located on International Drive down here in Orlando, is a dueling piano bar. It’s almost like a lounge but with loud pianists. It’s a pretty hip and trendy place.
Their logo … not so much. Except maybe on Halloween, then it DOES fit! That orange makes the place look way too Halloweeny, and the fact that their “mascot” is a wolf doesn’t help their case much either. Aside for the color, the wolf itself is not drawn very well either. I decided to take it upon myself to revamp it.
As always. the first step I take in designing a logo is to sketch out my ideas. I drew out several different wolves facing different directions. This one worked best, particular with the howling of the musical notes I was going with. The only issue is that people read from left-to-right … so the direction the wolf was facing would have to be switched. This would be an easy fix after I scanned it into Photoshop
Once I scanned it in and saved it as a high-resolution image, I imported it into illustrator, saved the sketch in a locked template layer, then retraced it using the pen tool. I could have had Illustrator automatically trace it, but I wanted to ensure that I got a perfect circle for the moon and fixed some problem areas with the wolf. The real fun began after the illustration was finished!
I made a contact sheet with different color combinations that I felt really worked with this logo, including the original orange.
Even with the revamped logo, the orange still gave it a very Halloween-ish appearance, the issue I was trying to avoid in the first place. So I leaned toward the vivid red, since the color was as lively and excited as the bar itself. Even though I had good rhythm going on with the red and the charcoal, it was still a lot of colors competing for one another. I needed a logo that could work on their online site, their front entrance, and on their print ads.
After struggling for hours on end researching colors and trying to figure out how to choose the “perfect” colors to go with this logo, I realized that I was overdoing it. I noticed that the company mostly uses its logo on dark surfaces (i.e. their website has a black background, the front sign illuminates on a dark night). This made me realize that making the moon and the text “white” with just a splash of red on the stylized “o” would be enough to give it that edge without making it look trashy. I created two versions of the official logo … a black version to be used on print and a white version they can use on their sign and on their website.
I was very excited to present this to my class. I feel like this rebrand was particularly successful and most of my classmates agreed as well. I think that in application, this new design would be much more stunning and effective!