How I gave life to a street market's seller product

Updated: Jun 9

Every Friday, my wife, my daughter, and I go to our local street market. It's where you can find fresh veggies, fruit, greens, and all kinds of stuff directly from the producers. The amazing thing about the street market is how lively and original it feels. You see all kinds of people (almost) doing their shopping, chatting, shouting, laughing, playing music, having BBQs, competing with each other over who can yell and sell more. It is a great experience that really gives you the vibe of simple everyday people. M. Roumeliotis, otherwise known as my "honey guy", is one of them. I always go to him for my honey not because he has the loudest voice (he is actually very humble), but because he has the best honey at the market. It wasn't only his honey and his low profile personality that kept me coming back but also that the honey itself was poured directly from a huge, crumpled, inox barrel directly into an unlabeled jar which he would seal in front of me. Oh and another important factor is that this honey is collected from bees in Arcadia, a central and eastern part of the Peloponnese peninsula which I love for its natural beauty, mountains, forests, and old villages. For me as a consumer, all these little details were inside my honey jar. It was one of those Fridays while I was shopping and chatting with Marinos, when he excitedly took out his phone to show me a logo he made himself for his brand. The truth is, it was ok for someone who had no idea about design. But it was worse than the graphic designer's work, which he showed me next. "This is what the designer made for me and I don't find it fitting for me".

Now, my dear readers, Imagine after telling me all this, M. had no idea that I am a graphic designer who specializes in logos and branding. All of this was a coincidence and, for this reason, I didn't want to sound salesy by telling him what I do. I thought that I could maybe "hit" him up the next time I go to buy his honey.

Without even asking him or thinking why, I just started sketching some ideas. Bees, honeycombs, the letter R in my head for weeks, whenever I had free time. Finally, I "distilled" (this is what I call the selection of the best ideas out of my sketchbook) and vectorized 4 main ideas after many sketches. But M. was long gone. I started thinking that he was probably forced to stop coming to the market for some reason. Or that he by now had already decided to keep one of those ugly logos, maybe he had even already had them printed… One day I finally found him on Facebook and I presented my 4 ideas in one single image. The reply was crazy! He got so excited and surprised that he started showing the image to his friends to help him decide which one to choose! But did I really design the right logo for him? My designs were good, but I felt there was something missing. A BRIEF, of course! I never had the chance to actually discuss all the little details of honey production, the methods, the tools, the target audience, etc. I never had the chance to start the process as I always do with my clients. Step by step, asking them questions, getting to know them as professionals and as personalities. Stepping into their shoes for a while to see their needs, weaknesses, and strong spots. Because this is the real essence and method for a good and targeted brand design. Logos are not rabbits coming out of "magic hats". They are results of deep research and communication. This is where M. and I actually started a great collaboration. I asked him to erase all the ideas I'd already shown him from his mind and that we will start again from zero, step by step, following my method to design the most fitting logo for him and his brand name. I made him a logo, three different honey jar labels, and a business card. So, this story is a good reminder and a lesson. Never wait for the next day, speak out your thoughts, let people know who you are and what you do before they ask you. Because maybe they'll never do it. Maybe they need your help, and they don't even know it.

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