CENTRAL’s community-focused identity for Barón Camarón is about eating well and having a good time
Located in Carretera a El Salvador, Guatemala, Barón Camarón is a restaurant dedicated to eating great seafood and having a good time, celebrating the two together. Collaborating with CENTRAL, the Guatemala and Mexico-based creative studio sought to visually capture this ethos – alongside their commitment to creating an inclusive, friendly space – in Barón Camarón’s identity. A space, fundamentally, for the local community.
“Carretera a El Salvador is a small section of the Inter-American Highway adjacent to Guatemala City,” Founder & Strategy Director Carol Menéndez and Art Director Luis Dubón tell us, discussing Barón Camarón’s location. “It is a mostly residential suburban area, quite far from the beach,” they explain, “but full of new shopping and dining experiences for locals,” finding themselves determined to craft an identity comfortably within its neighbourhood.
Developing a comprehensive visual language for the eatery, CENTRAL covered every aspect of Barón Camarón’s output, from naming and copywriting to animation and printed collateral. The focus is primarily on the seafood, which is conveyed through playful marine iconography and characterful illustration – all done in-house. “We decided to integrate illustration to add a sense of humour and carefreeness to the brand’s personality,” Menéndez and Dubón recall, a feature also reflected in the supporting copywriting. “While we were making it, the idea of it being a brand mascot costume came up,” they continue, “it seemed to us that it made a lot of sense for what we imagined and the client agreed,” delighted with the result.
The subsequent brevity and candour that the illustrations provide are similarly mirrored in the use of Colophon Foundry’s Sunset Gothic as the hero typeface, applied in Hairline and Light weights. “As we developed the identity,” Menéndez and Dubón explain, “we envisioned a laid-back, humorous host who wears plain white guayaberas with little embellishment,” reflecting this tone through the type’s relaxed design and application. Contrasting this mellow manner is the vivid use of colour, handing the brand a bright, spirited energy. “We thought of the traditional Guatemalan ceviche, which has tomato as one of its main elements,” Menéndez and Dubón conclude, “and we decided to add yellow for the contrast and the sense of liveliness that the combination conveys.”