The assignment was to design a look for a new vodka that was in development, no brand name or strategy yet. The only information available was that it was 101 proof. The agency and distiller wanted the look to be aggressive and edgy.
With nothing else to go on, I resorted to something I learned years ago in art school – taking a look at the letters involved, V-O-D-K-A. I spotted the OD right away and thought the name OverDose Vodka would certainly be aggressive, and edgy. The client agreed.
I designed from there. I decided a “Medical/Pharmaceutical” look would enhance the concept of overdose. I achieved this by using medical/pharmaceutical graphics – such as the graduated volume lines that are printed or etched on the barrel of a syringe and other equipment. Along with the simple straight forward typography that is typically used on measurement devices. I felt this sort of antiseptic look and the clear liquid of vodka, demanded a clear bottle with the graphics printed directly on. Lastly, I felt the cork stopper gave the bottle a warmth that helped offset the antiseptic look and signaled this was indeed a beverage and not a medical/pharmaceutical product.
This project was certainly a case of the tail wagging the dog, saving the client thousands of dollars and months of time by not involving a naming consultant. Needless to say, they were quite pleased with this. But even more pleased with the result; a very strong brand concept, product name and package design. This really was a fun project and continues to be so with the development of marketing and advertising.