Common Studios combine colour, chaos and character in doughnut shop COPS’ unapologetic identity
Sydney-based graphic design and illustration practice Common Studios have brought technicolour to Toronto’s sweet treat scene, courtesy of their punchy, distinctive identity for COPS – a drip coffee and mini doughnut store at the city’s heart. Embracing not only the pink hues of North American doughnut tradition but emboldening the colour with a set of equally vibrant counterparts, COPS’ refreshed identity looks to stand out in both physical and digital spaces.
In conversation with Common Studios’ founder, Kelsen Findlay tells us, “the lilac was added later in the process to create a sense of contrast and differentiation between the products,” discussing the effective use of colour and its importance. “Tonally, these colours also make a subtle nod towards the red and blue of police sirens (without being so overt),” he adds, “given the North American context, it was important the colour and overall feel of the brand found the right balance in tone and playfulness,” translating the sonic and chromatic vibrancy of its context into hypnotic, engaging shapes.
Alongside the use of colour and pattern is the equally paramount application of typography. Starkly and systematically applied, Common Studios’ treatment of typography provides the playful patterns with a pragmatic partner – balancing the eccentricity of the identity with necessary accessibility. Opting for Avenir Next Condensed Bold as the hero typeface and style across the entire identity, Findlay explains, “in line with our brand idea of ‘arresting the senses,’ a condensed font worked well to tighten the compositional space and create maximum impact,” finding the latter in Avenir Next’s scalability and legibility. “I wanted the design to feel big, noisy and hypnotising,” he concludes, achieving as much through the carefully considered and unapologetic triptych of colour, chaos and character.