A lot has gone into the creation of our Logos and we’d like to take this opportunity to showcase the works of art that form the face of Little Brother Brewery. The final versions which are now our official logos have come a long way and there have been countless preceding incarnations. We’d like to showcase not only this process of graphic design evolution but to also uncover our logo’s hidden details and meanings.
We feel our logo has struck a successful balance between traditional and contemporary aesthetics. We wanted to convey our respect for the history of hand crafted ales but to do so in a way which maintained our own beliefs, authenticity and youth as a company.
Firstly, it might be a good start to explain why “Little Brother Brewery”. Although there was much deliberation over the name of our brewery, the choice in the end was quite simple. In 2013 Cameron, the younger of the two Manson brothers, asked his older brother Andrew, “Do you wanna start a Brewery?” To which Andrew replied, “Yeah, why not?” Although there were many preceding years of home brewing between the two, the desire and passion of the little brother to start an official brewery, made the name a simple choice. We also thought the name was fitting for our niche craft ale market, as we see ourselves as being the “Little Brother” version of a brewery who is up against the larger “Big Brother” lager breweries.
During the process of designing our logo we found that there was one guiding rule which we couldn’t escape. This guiding rule was symmetry. We discovered that the history of brewery and beer logos, as well as beer labels, has created a powerful visual recognition though symmetry that can’t be denied. As soon as we started to explore more asymmetrical and in some ways more contemporary options, the design started to look more like a soft drink or soda pop logo than one used to brand beer. By maintaining symmetry it was the first step in the right direction in the design of our logo.
Once symmetry was maintained, which gave a visual nod to the history of breweries, we turned our attention to what would convey a sense of youth. It turns out that fonts and the different nuances in the look of text can have an extremely powerful effect. Take the Heineken logo for example. Feddie Heineken, who had a nack for marketing, decided to tilt the three “e’s” of the Heineken logo to give the brand a more approachable and friendly appearance. I was then that the “smiling e’s” were invented and they’ve been smiling friendly at patrons ever since.
Details such as the smiling e’s exist within the text of Little Brother Brewery but first let’s start with pure font. We decide we wanted two impressions from our font; youth and strength. What we chose in the end was to split the logo into three different fonts; two distinct and contrasting fonts and one more conventional font. This is somewhat unusual as so many different fonts could be seen as too busy. Nevertheless, we think it works.
It made sense that the youthful aspect be depicted in the word ‘Little’ and so we chose a playful and candid script-like font with joyous loops which is emphasised by an irreverent underline. On the other hand, for the word ‘Brother’ we chose a bold, industrial, stamp inspired font which suggests the industrial nature of the brewery business and permanence of the brand. Finally, the word ‘Brewery’ was seen as more of a descriptive word and less as part of the brand. Hence it has been given a more utilitarian font and takes on a secondary role underneath the other two words. The ‘W’ however has been slightly overlapped in the middle to accentuate the symmetry. It is intended that this word ‘Brewery’ be translated into each location’s local dialect to assist with the local brand acceptance.
Within the text are a couple of hidden details. The two t’s of the word ‘little’ represent the two founding brothers, Andrew and Cameron. Notice the cross bar of the first ‘t’ extends and drapes over the second to give the effect that the two brothers are standing side by side and one has their arm over the shoulder of the other. Secondly, if you look closely at the bottom left hand corner of the ‘R’ of ‘Brother’ you’ll notice, in the stamp effect of the font, a tiny map of Australia which is the founding Brother’s birthplace.
Colour ended up being a simple choice. It had to be gold. Not only does this colour mimic that of the primary ingredients of barley and wheat but it also represents quality. Both quality of ingredients and quality of product are at the core of Little Brother Brewery. The addition of the red ribbon, while providing an additional sense of quality and a seal of approval, also assists in stimulating a purchasing instinct within potential patrons.
It couldn’t be a beer logo without paying homage to the miraculous ingredients which go into making such a remarkable beverage. Barley, hops and yeast provide decorative detail along the bottom of our logo and pay tribute to not only the ingredients themselves but also the people who dedicate their lives to farming such amazing produce.
Last but not least, is the crowning glory of our Logo; the Maltese Cross. Within the meaning of this single insignia lies everything that Little Brother Brewery stands for and strives to live up to. The Maltese Cross was chosen as it adorns the Australian state flag of Queensland which is the home state of Andrew and Cameron. But it was not just chosen as a patriotic symbol. We have adapted the original 15th Century ideologies bestowed upon it by the Knights of Malta and given it new meaning. For us, the four arms of the Maltese Cross represent the four primary ingredients of beer which are water, malt, yeast and hops and the eight points of the cross stand for the following philosophies:
- Flavour is King!
- Locally sourced quality ingredients
- Dedication to the craft of brewing
- Continuing innovation and experimentation
- Enriching craft beer culture
- Engagement with local community
- Environmental sustainability and responsibility
- Delight in the everyday
Also included upon the Maltese Cross you’ll find a cluster of stars known as the Southern Cross. This constellation takes pride of place upon the Australian National Flag and can be seen in the sky at night Australia wide. For us, this is a symbol of national pride and unity.
Crossing in the background, behind the Maltese Cross, are the traditional tools of the brewing trade; a grain shovel and a mash paddle. Both represent the hand crafted method we use to produce our beer and our respect for the history and craft of brewing.
Finally, on the red ribbon, you’ll find not a company slogan but the location of the brewery along with the year we were proudly founded. We have chosen not to opt for a company slogan but instead proudly display the location the beer was produced. Locality and community are extremely important to Little Brother Brewery.
Hopefully, this has provided an insight into not only our logo design but also Little Brother Brewery as a whole. Our logo is not just a branding icon but treasure map to discover all the things that we hold dearest. Our intent is that when we use our logo it truly means something.
Below you’ll find a selection of logos that didn’t make the cut. As you can see it was a graphic design adventure to say the least.