When renegade Yarra Valley winemakers—Innocent Bystander—created the first release Mea Culpa Shiraz they realised they had a special wine on their hands. But for a brand and business famous for their “great wine without the bullsh*t” philosophy, Mea Culpa presented a design and positioning challenge. To opportunity was to align two seemingly incompatible brand philosophies and two creative languages, while maintaining individual distinctiveness.
Innocent Bystander stands for ‘life with wine on the side’ and Mea Culpa is what happens when wine (briefly) takes centre stage. This dual personality became the foundation for the design approach through the use of the now iconic ‘Bystander’ figure and showing his moment of weakness. We capture him at the very moment he begins to revel in his passion for wine. In order to maintain the Innocent Bystander irreverence, the label represents the rejection of sterility, technical perfection and embracing true character.
The Mea Culpa range has integrated effortlessly into the Innocent Bystander family—both on shelf and at their home at Innocent Bystander HQ in the Yarra Valley. Mea Culpa has added a creative tension to the suite of products adding further depth and character to the brand. The ongoing design approach ensures the Mea Culpa brand personality stands for something uniquely distinctive while remaining true to the Innocent Bystander rebel nature.