Positively Stocked is actually is designed to be a sister company of Positively Packaged. Photography is such an important role in creating a cohesive brand consistently, the two women thought it would be a key piece to creating two brands that can function together and also separately.
They are supplying professional photos consistently allows the customer to create a cohesive brand at an affordable price.
Ok, first things first. Who are we designing for?
Luckily, I have been talking and building relationships with many entrepreneurs doing the user research just required setting up a casual convo with some of them. I was able to reach out to them, pick their brain, and come up with a persona to help me gauge exactly what they needed help with.
Based on my "Kim" persona, I determined some important factors for this entrepreneur demographic.
- Although they knew what a professional photo looked like, they had no idea how to take them for themselves.
- They are excited to launch their new business, but they also don't want to put something out into the world they are not happy with. They want to look professional from the start.
- They needed to have new professionals consistently, but they didn't want to put the money out for a photographer consistently.
- They realize that taking great photos requires equipment and supplies they don't have like lighting and a variety of props.
The information was key in helping me prioritize features and interface design.
Reviewing the Competition
In order to understand and fully appreciate the need for professional photos, I needed to understand the competition. Surely, there were other companies in the marketplace offering similar things. I made it my goal to understand those companies, what they offer, and the gaps in the marketplace.
The concept and function of this project were simple, so the inspiration for this project flowed freely. I only needed a handful of sketches to get me started and understand how to create a unique experience for the consumer.
Even when a project is simple, you don't want to skip on the sketches because this simple process allowed me to make minor tweaks and edits as I thought out how the consumer would use this product. Thinking this through and making these adjustments now help for a smoother process when moving on to the wireframes.
If I try to skip the sketches and move on to wireframes, it usually causes me to spend too much time, and the process is never thoroughly thought out, which is why I love planning the idea out in sketches.
By the time I got to wireframing, I had a flow of ideas coming to me. I was eager to build out the different pages. This process allows me to validate the thoughts in my head.
It can be time-consuming, but to keep the momentum up, I looked into using some pre-made wireframing kits as a basis to start the process. This allowed me to have a solid base to build upon. I quickly adjusted and added elements into the wireframe that were custom to this project and this customer's needs. Using these kits saved me hours of my time, which meant we could move faster on the other stages of the projects.
All-in-all, the wireframe design stage was a great experience and an efficient process.
With the wireframes completed, I wanted to confirm that the flow of the site would make sense. Especially since we had so many different discovery points, unique features, and navigation methods, I wanted a clear view of how things would work.
Branding & Visual Standards
Logo design is so much fun to me. I believe that logo design and UX design have many commonalities because it is all about problem-solving. It is about getting across a point or story in a very concise way. Not to toot my own horn, but I have been told that I am great and expressing a person's vision in the logos alone. I tend to think of logos as icons, and I almost always create an icon they can use to tell a story in many areas of their marketing material. So with Positively Stocked, it is all about photography, but how can I show that uniquely for this company. In an exemplary logo, you may not always see all the pieces at first glance; it has layers. So you immediately see the camera here, but what you may not notice is how I wove the "S" in to create different camera pieces, and I used the negative space to incorporate in the letter "P."
Color Palette & Supporting Patterns
Knowing that this company will be creating many different types of visuals in its work for the customers, the palette needed to remain neutral for the most part. The last thing you would want is for the Positively Stocked brand to compete with the photography it was selling off to the customers.
But with a neutral palette, there are still so many choices and ways to go about it. I wanted to create a sophisticated high-end palette that felt luxurious to the client. Although the pricing was not luxury, Positively Stocked wanted it to feel like an elegant photography brand. Adding in the teal gives the brand the ability for pops of color when it is needed.
In addition to the colors, I wanted to give the brand some supporting elements to create a unique experience on the website and social. It is smart to use a watermark over your photos to people who don't have access to them as a photographer. So, I created a pattern with the logo icon to be used as a watermark for the photos to help preserve the identity of this company.
Using a classic, left sidebar navigation layout, I designed a compact, minimal site that allows you to load the website easily from anywhere.
I created an interactive prototype, which we are testing with our participants and customers to gain feedback and insight.
© Crystal Sullivan 2021