Tapping into energy mechanisms, Bold Scandinavia’s Homevolt brand explores humanity and technology
Revolutionising the energy landscape, Homevolt has emerged as a groundbreaking consumer battery uniting advanced battery technology with state-of-the-art energy-saving software. Crafted through the collaborative efforts of Tibber and Polarium, the product welcomes a new wave of energy management, offering its users unprecedented insight into and control over your household energy usage. Following half a decade of dedicated development and the team’s commitment to democratising home energy storage, the resulting product intelligently optimises electricity consumption so that it can be stored and used more effectively later, empowering consumers to reduce energy expenses and grant greater electric freedom. As such, Homevolt embodies the core essence of battery functionality and a critical facet of energy management – inflow and outflow – a binary theme that reflects in its striking brand identity, courtesy of Copenhagen, Stockholm and Oslo-based design studio Bold Scandinavia, a partner of Scandinavian agency network The North Alliance.
Interwoven with themes of contemporary technology and the distinctive style of Scandinavia’s visual heritage, Bold Scandinavia struck a harmonious balance between innovative pragmatism and the humanistic approach they took to the identity’s creation – from its otherworldly audio to the studious typographic detailing. Speaking of the concept behind the brand, Senior Designer Carl Gürgens tells us, “the idea took us some time to figure out because of its complexity,” having tried to tell too much in the early stages of the design, in turn opting for a conceptually and practically simpler motif: morse code. “It consists of four different grid components or blink patterns,” Gürgens explains, noting however, that in use, the system became too abstract. “Rather than focusing on the content of the grid,” he continues, “we flipped the idea to be about what it’s supposed to do within,” focusing on its role as a battery, and the user’s primary concerns of charging and discharging. “In that way you have four different modules put together, visualising the space for the energy,” Gürgens notes, “a simple visual language that captures the battery in its purest form.”
Bold Scandinavia then built out their morse code concept through light and sound, rooting it in the battery’s inherent intelligence, partnering with CatK – one of the leading creative voices in a motion and music – to do so. Striving to communicate the brand’s offering to users, the pair developed a series of states for the battery’s LED lights to inhabit, demonstrating a collision of converging colours. “It’s an abstract yet familiar face,” Gürgens remarks, “just as we tried to define the persona of the battery itself,” which directly informed the brand’s collective chromatic output. “The brand is mainly black and white, and the additional colours are only used for functional reasons,” he adds, deriving directly from the LED lights on the battery,” and the different states of its operation. “The whole concept of making a new visual language,” Gürgens recalls, “which talks in the way the battery also communicates with us.”
Grounding the brand’s concept through an undisputed clarity is Bold Scandinavia’s use of type, turning to CoType’s Aeonik as its hero typeface family, specifically utilising its Fono and Pro styles. “The Aeonik Fono comes from an idea that mechanical vs technical can also be translated into opposites as of human vs tech,” Gürgens contextualises, motivated by the notion of using a monospaced typeface more expressively. “The hard machine-like face just fell in place,” he continues, adding that the semi-monospaced cut had more personality when all the assets came together. “We liked the idea that the letters felt like small bits,” Gürgens explains, “the individual shapes became more apparent, rather than just focusing on the reading – somehow extraterrestrial.”
The celebration of simple form continued into the overarching, minimalist approach to the brand’s execution, focusing on the subtle presentation of ordered information alongside powerful, engrossing visual renders of the product. “We tried to highlight that the visual aspect of the content is the king,” he clarifies, creating a space-making system that achieves as much, regardless of the content it contains. “In some sense, we tried to talk about it as an ‘expressive subtleness’ to the battery,” Gürgens concludes, building a rigour grid based upon the idea of opposites (+ / –), “this symbol then became integrated in the behaviour of the type and image,” epitomising the brand, product and offering in a few simple glyphs.
|3D & Motion|