Daniel Freytag and Greig Anderson of Freytag Anderson
Freytag Anderson is an independent design studio based in Glasgow, UK and working everywhere. They create unique brand identities for application in print, screen and environment. They are responsible for The Fableists’ logo and brand identity. We spoke to Daniel Freytag.
The Fableists > The Fableists’ branding has been getting quite a lot of attention of late. What was the idea behind the lightning bolt ‘F’?
Daniel > We wanted to create a no-nonsense, dynamic and provocative marque that reflected the rebellious and emotive qualities of the brand. The lightning bolt ‘F’ communicates these ideas whilst being instantly recognisable and robust enough to work across a broad range of applications.
The Fableists > What is your process when pulling together ideas and components of a pitch?
Daniel > I believe our job as designers is to apply ideas. Without ideas there’s only style.
To create ideas we follow a simple process – we read the brief then put it away. Once sufficient time has elapsed we get everyone around a table and put some thoughts on paper. This short interval between reading the brief and starting the design process allows us to form ideas organically. Once they’re in the bag the rest is pretty straight forward.
The Fableists > Is your work representative of a design style?
Daniel > Depends what you define as ‘style’. We believe in the old mantra less is more – therefore our work has a distinct minimalist quality which strives to have the most impact with the least number of elements.
The Fableists > Where and from whom do you get your inspiration?
Daniel > Everyone and everything – I am constantly amazed how seemingly unconnected everyday things can come together over time to inform an idea. I think as designers (and people) we are the sum of our experiences.
The Fableists > Do you have an ideal client? Someone you’d love to design for?
Daniel > I personally love working with startups – you get to be there are the birth of a new venture – inevitably the people involved are super passionate and optimistic – it also helps if they have a decent budget.
The Fableists > Which work that you’ve done are you most proud of?
Daniel > I think the project we recently completed for Icelandic Film Production co. Truenorth was pretty cool. They’ve been working with some major Hollywood studios to produce movies such as Prometheus / Oblivion etc. It was exciting to see how their business works and to help them reinvent their brand identity and engagement tools.
The Fableists > Is there a bit of design work that you’ve seen that you wish you had done?
Daniel > All the time – competition and good work is what inspires and drives us forward – the job is never done.
The Fableists > How do you work? Do you work regular hours, every day? Or when creativity strikes?
Daniel > We operate from a studio in Glasgow’s Merchant City. There are five of us working around one big table. We build teams around project requirements and draw upon a network of developers, photographers and copywriters when required. This approach allows us to stay nimble and offer our clients the best possible value.
As a design studio we require a certain amount of structure to engage with our clients. However my wife will tell you that I don’t ‘switch off’. I generally don’t draw a distinction between work and home – you have to grab ideas whenever they come.
The Fableists > How do you think The Fableists branding will resonate with kids and their parents?
Daniel > The Fableists branding relies on great text and photography to tell the story. This, along with the work of great collaborators (i.e. illustrators etc) – and of course fantastic clothes – is a winning combination. The overall sustainable ethos of the Fableists brand will appeal to parents whilst the style, quality and bright colours of the range will make kids want to wear them again and again.
The Fableists > Do you think our small company can take on the fast fashion giants?
Daniel > I do. I think people are waking up to the fact that our current habits as consumers are unsustainable. People are starting to ask questions and you have a powerful story which must be told. The time is right to show people that there is a relevant, sustainable and affordable alternative.
The Fableists > Has there been an increase in clients interested in an identity that can be produced sustainably?
Daniel > Yes, I would say that most clients ‘desire’ a sustainable approach to their businesses. Unfortunately, I think ‘sustainability’ is still seen as a luxury and is certainly outweighed by immediate budgetary limitations. The bottom line is that very few clients pay more to be green – unless it’s their only USP. This will only change if the consumer demands it.
The Fableists >Tell us about the paper that The Fableists business cards and letterhead have been printed on.
Daniel > The Fableists stationery was produced using Dutch Greyboard and Cyclus Offset papers. Both these are 100% recycled and FSC accredited materials.
The Fableists > What is your personal dress sense?
Daniel > Somewhere between eclectic and bad.