The need for green expertise has never been higher and the tree hugging, bunny cuddling, hippie is a million miles away from the reality of the today's ecologist. In fact, the industry was with £1.42 billion in 2013. This is serious business and as building and development continues to rise, their importance will only increase further.
Clarkson & Woods is a leading ecology consultancy based in the southwest of England. A company with a substantial reputation and expertise and one that has seen huge changes over the years - sometimes against their wishes, forced by circumstance and often a consequence at being very good at what they do. Subsequently they are growing and evolving as a business requiring their brand identity to do the same.
Smudged was approached to realise these changes and take it into a new era.
Following the tragic and untimely deaths of founder, Michael Woods and his son, Jonathan, Smudge was asked to rebrand the business and establish an identity that would not only be a credit to their legacy but take the business into the following years in the hands of friend and company director, Tom Clarkson.
Then known as Michael Woods & Associates, it was necessary to see the identity through a period of transition, firstly to brand it as Michael Woods Associates and then oversee a complete name change to Clarkson & Woods. To do this we had to create a memorable icon that could work together and independently of the name. That was visual strong enough to carry the change through with the minimum of disturbance.
In addition to their commitment to safeguarding wildlife, their ultimate role as an ecology consultancy is to ensure that development can continue with the minimum of disturbance to the wildlife and eco-cultures. However, the language of a developer is a far cry from a fluffy bunny or visual interpretation of a newly forming leaf braking through the ground. They are in the building game. They construct things!
For that reason it was important that the identity presented an aspect of mutual interest, that it portrayed a language and understanding of both the natural environment and the construction industry. This was an important consideration to help avoid the stereotypical characterisation of the business and present a balance between development and nature - that the two can coexist.