Inspired by the pins that travelers use to track their travels on a map, Hey Studio created the pin-drop concept for Thalby, a global affairs studio. Each of the three different guides is categorized through a different system of illustrations, all inspired by the original pin-drop concept. Themes of exploration run deeply throughout the branding system, inspiring discoveries, appreciations, and emotions. Not to mention, the color palette is vivid yet balanced, honing in on the classic aesthetic.
Thalby is a global affairs studio with a team that spans all over the world. Their collaborators are always local to each of the countries they cover – reporters, writers, researchers, artists and designers. The naming is a nod to two great and controversial travellers of the 20th century. Wilfred Thesiger (1910-2003) spent almost 60 years exploring the Middle East and Africa, and Harry Saint John Philby (1885-1960) roamed the Middle East and South Asia. Both were deeply committed to the regions and peoples they explored and encountered.
Continuing on that premise of exploration we needed a concept that reflected this core value of the brand. So, we created the pin-dot concept, based on how travellers used to pin their maps manually. This subtle gesture of putting the pin-dot on the ’t’ helped us to give character to the Thalby logo and symbol.
Their first endeavour was to publish evidence-based guides to Society, Culture and Politics around the world. Each country has these subjects divided in three different guides, so the need to categorise these guides but yet keep cohesion across the Thalby catalogue led us to create a system of illustrations derived from the pin-dot concept, all created from circles.
Overlapping, cropping and merging the circles gave us the opportunity to be playful along the process. Resulting in a wide library of different illustrations to be assigned for the guide covers no matter the country.
This recognisable look of the covers combining the roman inspired typography and the bold abstract illustration is what we were aiming for since the beginning of the project, to stand out and not rely on the clichés of the travel guides universe.