“Cut to the Chase”
Back in July of 2016, I wrote about a new international look for Fanta that had launched in parts of Europe. No credit was given on the work but now that their embargo has lifted, they can take said credit: it was by London, UK-based Koto. That review included some cut-paper illustrations and typography done internally at Fanta, that reflected the direction set by Koto but not fully the original design intent, which is shown in this follow-up post, along with a few more visuals and the versions for Fanta’s presence in Asian markets.
Working in collaboration with the Coca-Cola design team, we re-imagined the Fanta global visual identity. Built on the bold, vibrant and fruity taste of Fanta, we hand-constructed the new logo out of paper and then re-created it in digital form, while simultaneously building the rest of the brand around the visual approach.
With follow-ups I always enjoy reading my own reviews to see if my opinion stays consistent. I’m happy to report that I have the same feelings about the logo now as I did almost a year ago: great typography, horrible leaf. I am perhaps more lenient now knowing that the whole point was to make it out of cut paper, but I still dislike the shape, proportion, and shading of it. The logo looks great in single color (and the leaf becomes less distracting). In the past review I had also been hard on the orange slices which, now, in context with the other fruit illustrations (bottom of post) make more sense as part of a group.
The guideline specifies Omnes from Darden Studio, which is one of my all-time favorite typefaces as well as that of many consumer products, due to its friendliness, so it’s not entirely surprising to see it here. There is not much use of it in the applications shown here — there was more of it in the 2016 post — but it seems like an okay choice… maybe a little conflicting with the hard edges of everything else.
The custom typeface is pretty great and perfectly executed, capturing the feel of cut paper and neatly digitized while also being properly in OpenType with contextual alternates that make words like “ACROSS” not look like it came out of DaFont with the same “S”s.
The structural packaging is still odd and overwrought. I can confirm the bottle shape was NOT done by Koto, but can not confirm who designed it. The disconnect between what looks like a high-tech bottle with spores and twisting ridges and the more crafty vibe of the graphics is unfortunate.
The illustrations are pretty cool shape-wise and the contours follow the principles of all the cut-paper stuff but the switch to computer-y textures and gradients is odd. Would have loved to see flat-color versions of these.
Overall, the whole thing exudes the Fanta-is-funner approach and the type in the logo is still my favorite part but there is a lack of consistency — or too many ideas going on at once — across the physical and graphic assets.