Tag: branding


We have a long history with country hitmakers Big & Rich, and were thrilled to get the chance to work on another project with them. On their new album, Hillbilly Jedi, they step things up a notch or three with a diverse array of songs, including the first track, “Born Again” which features Bon Jovi in a key role, both in co-writing and performing on the song. Word on the street is that Jon Bon Jovi himself suggested calling the album “Hillbilly Jedi,” and when everyone at the label (and us!) suggested that would be a legal problem, Jon personally called George Lucas to get clearance on using the word “Jedi.”

The creative process revolved around the attitude and contradiction in the title, and the result is cowboys-in-space with shades of steampunk. With some heavy-handed photo manipulation, film-credits-inspired type treatments, and a healthy dose of caffeine, we assembled the key images from the shoot combined with images from several other sources (including NASA) and developed the brand for the album, along with the physical packaging and digital album elements, to create what we think is the only country album of its type for some time to come :)

The album is available via Warner Music, iTunes, or Amazon, among other retailers.


The following is an excerpt from a guest blog post by Collide’s Kevin Tucker, on The Music Gardener, a blog by Keith Stancil of Artist Garden Entertainment.

Every successful artist has found a way into the hearts and minds of those who support them. One of the major keys to engaging fans in a way that develops their loyalty, even devotion, over the course of the artist’s career. There are a lot of ingredients to the recipe for that kind of success, but a large portion of it boils down to branding. I know, you’ve heard people talk about branding so much in the music industry that it seems like it’s this nebulous, all-encompassing buzzword devoid of any definition. Does it even mean anything anymore? I’m here to tell you that it still means… everything.

But let’s set music aside for a moment. Think about your favorite consumer products or services. What makes you loyal to them? It’s likely a combination of factors, largely the promise of quality in what they offer, and the consistency in which they deliver on that promise, but there’s likely an intangible quality about the brand that you inherently connect to on an emotional level. Somehow what that brand stands for just “clicks” for you, and you sing their praises to all of your friends, even defending them to those who would criticize it. This kinship and loyalty didn’t develop through haphazard circumstance, and to accomplish that for any brand requires a great deal of expertise working together in a concerted, purposeful effort.

A brand is quite simply a reputation, and the experts in the industry who work under the umbrella of branding are those who play a part in the development and management of that reputation. That’s a big job… so it’s no wonder that the word is so prevalent. It encompasses many aspects of industry expertise in any industry, and for music it includes many fields including artist development, management, marketing, public relations, image development, photography, and design. The latter three areas are where the root of my personal expertise lies, but more on that later on. Branding requires a centralized effort in which everyone involved shares in the common goals. This is crucial for an artist’s initial launch, but it’s equally important throughout the process of promoting the artist and project. All of these areas combine to build stories around the brand and create an ongoing narrative that connects people to this brand/reputation. (As another example see Keith’s post about Nashville’s boutique jeans makers Imogene + Willie)

For the music industry, the longer-term effort is career-level brand-buildling; but the boots on the ground are typically working on one project at a time (typically an album or a tour), and usually each project has its own unique brand aspects which, though they relate to the long-term branding effort, are part of that project’s unique identity.

There are many artists out there who have leveraged branding well throughout their careers…

View the full article on The Music Gardener


Being connected very closely with the Nashville-produced How Come TV series project, we created the brand look for the show from the initial concept pitch & fundraising efforts, through production, as well as created the animated opening sequence, and motion graphics throughout the episode (with visual fx & color-correction work by the fine folks at PK Pictures). Here’s a small sampling of our work. For more, you can watch the pilot episode online.


Most any fan of Contemporary Christian Music is familiar with the music of Big Daddy Weave – one of the most popular bands in the genre today. Mike Weaver and the band have been making positive and compelling music since 2001, and their latest album, Love Come To Life, is no exception, and we were thrilled to get the opportunity to design its branding and packaging. With a variation on the band’s existing logo, some heavy photo compositing, and a reliance on texture and a limited color scheme, we arrived at a look and feel that accurately conveys the directness, depth, and inspiration found in their music, and the atypical black & white photography on the cover speaks to the immediacy and timelessness of their message.

Contribution: Design, Photo Compositing, Retouching
Art Director: Katherine Petillo

We like to crack the occasional toilet humor joke around the office (who doesn’t?) but for top-selling comedian Larry the Cable Guy’s CD & DVD release Morning Constitutions, we were able to, well… let it rip. From setting up a photoshoot with Larry, um… pooping in the woods (while reading a fictional compilation of Fart Jokes, which we also designed) next to a bear reading a newspaper, right down to the more subtle touches, such as the toilet paper banner which holds the title, and the vintage-inspired wallpaper inside the packaging, we took this job very seriously.

Contributions: Art Direction, Design, Illustration
Photography: Eric May
Silver Addy Award Winner

Hurry, Hurry, Hurry! Make sure not to miss this spectacular event benefitting Safe Haven Family Shelter.

We are very excited to be working with Allen Clark, Feld Entertainment, and Safe Haven Family Shelter to create the face of this event with invitations, web blasts and letter press posters! Come down and help out a worthy cause all while enjoying inspired photography and great treasures from the Circus’ past, at an exciting one-night-only event next Thursday, January 12.

More information below, along with a gallery including our poster design, and some example of Allen Clark’s amazing circus photography.

Feld Entertainment, Inc., the worldwide leader in producing and presenting live entertainment, has partnered with local photographer Allen Clark to host Museum & Menagerie: A Circus Celebration from Past to Present benefiting Safe Haven Family Shelter on January 12. Clark was granted access behind the scenes of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® circus to create an exhibit featuring animals and performers that capture the fundamental beauty and magic of these classic icons. The photographs will be included in a silent auction to take place at the event. The evening will include hors d’oeuvres, drinks, performers, items on display from the Ringling Bros. museum and live music by the band Bear Cub. (The event will also celebrate the upcoming Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Fully ChargedSM show at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena from Jan. 26 to Jan. 29.)

What: Museum & Menagerie – A Circus Celebration from Past to Present benefiting Safe Haven Family Shelter
Where: The Berger Building, 162 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., Nashville, TN 37203
When: Thursday, January 12; 6:30 to 8:30pm
Tickets: $65 in advance (purchase online at www.safehaven.org); $75 at the door


To most of America, Willie Nelson is a household name, as it is here at Collide, which is why we were SO excited to be able to create the branding and packaging for his new album, Remember Me Vol. 1. The new release from Willie Nelson and R&J Records, has plenty of familiar standards recorded by Willie with producer James Stroud from the “classic country songbook” made famous by the likes of Johnny Cash, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Porter Wagoner, and Vern Gosdin, and others – all with Willie’s signature twist!

To reflect this rich heritage in the packaging, we revisited the classic LP style (a vinyl edition of the album is on its way too), and created a digital photo-illustration for the cover to add to the timeless, classic quality. We hope you enjoy this project as much as we do. It’s now available on CD (Amazon) and digital (iTunes).

Above: Final Cover / Left: Original Photo / Right: Our Photo-Illustration

Collide has been very excited to work with the very talented Gary Voelker on a fresh new identity system for his company Experience Studios, a Washington-based production studio that will be sponsoring the film festival at the Gideon Conference this year. Check out the new logo or click here to see it in action in the promo film created by Experience Studios. Then visit the Experience Studios website or Facebook page for more information on how to enter the contest or attend the Gideon Media Arts Conference.

We created materials for The Village Chapel‘s Christmas theme “O Come Let Us Adore Him.” Putting large focus on the gorgeous illustration by Kim Thomas, these materials include bulletins, programs, and on-screen graphics, and are being used throughout the month of December for their regular services, and at the special Christmas service. Below are samples of a few of these items. Merry Christmas!