Art Direction, Brand Revamp, Responsive Website Design, UX & Photography Styling.
Role: Art Director + Designer
At the heart of The Cowshed is a wealth of stories that reinforce and bring to life the character of the brand, character that already attracts loyal customers and which could draw in new and captivated audiences the wider its message reaches.
Food has become an increasingly popular pastime, topic and product in recent years, which presents a huge opportunity, but also makes it even more important to stand out from the crowd, tell a story and engage the audience. If carefully crafted, a digital world can provide a window to a brand, as close as possible to a firsthand experience conjuring up the sights, smells and atmosphere.
We feel it is important to ‘show, not tell’ and this approach runs throughout our work.
In addition to the practical functions required we focused on building on two key elements of their online profile – Character and Community.
The personality of the brand needed to be successfully translated to online, and in addition the loyal and engaged community that exists needed to also be harnessed and built up in an online setting. These elements are layered over the necessary and more practical requirements of the site such as location details, contact pages, menus and booking details. Both Character and Community are built via content – much of this visual.
We were asked to refine the Cowshed branding to make it more flexible for usage on and offline. The result is sophisticated and elegant and therefore representative of the nature and quality of the restaurant experience.
With the construction of an exciting new Bath restaurant underway the Cowshed were making ambitious steps towards expanding upon the huge success of their original Bristol based restaurant.
In keeping with the spirit of ambition, we created an online experience that supports and celebrates Cowshed's success and growth. The website has been created to successfully support future growth by making an easy job out of adding new restaurant locations. Each individual restaurant location benefits from having its own online space, where news, events, special offers and menus can be individually tailored. This applied approach individually celebrates each restaurant by giving it its own unique personality, whilst simultaneously providing a cohesive branding experience to the user.
The visual style of the website is uncluttered and puts imagery at the heart of the user experience. The website promotes the restaurants beliefs of serving only the best and most delicious of local ingredients to its customers.
Whether accessing the website either via their desktop PC, tablet or smartphone, Cowshed customers will find it quick and easy to view the latest menus, check special offers and make an online reservation.
The concept we came up with for the website required us to do a still-life food photography shoot. And specifically of the raw ingredients before they were turned into the delicious meals that end up on the Cowshed’s customer’s plates, to tell a story of real, honest food.
We spent a day styling and photographing four different set-ups that formed the basis of our design. We mounted our camera on a jib so we could look down at the table at a 90 degrees angle and controlled the camera via the laptop using tethering in Adobe Lightroom. The images were then cleaned up and graded in Photoshop before they were added to our designs.
A week after the food shots we went back to the restaurant to take some shots to support the rest of the site and add to the existing library we worked with.
Client: The Cowshed