Glasgow riverside and view over the city centre of Edinburgh

Even though it was already long overdue, I had always postponed making a website for myself. However, this summer I couldn’t procrastinate any longer since I have to apply for an internship in the upcoming months for university. 

During the research phase I realized that I’m not happy with my logo and my brand in general. Despite being only two years old I found it outdated and had the feeling that it didn’t really reflect me any more. Apart from that, using your initials as a brand name is probably not the most innovative way if you want to be successful in the creative industries. Of course, I could have gotten away with the old one as well but I accepted the extra work and decided to redo my whole brand – better than being dissatisfied with a new website in the old design.

The minute I started thinking about my new identity it was clear for me in which direction I'd swim. Almost every other guy of my age is called Michael (at least in my perception) and I’m not fond of artsy names that have no real connection to you. Instead, I took advantage of my nickname(s): Fisch, Fischi, Fischa (or any other combination). 

It never bothered me that people call me so – rather the opposite. I got into the habit of making an awful lot of fish-puns and subconsciously began using it as my personal brand a while ago. Anyway, it took me till this year to become aware of the fact that using anything else for my corporate identity than a fish would be utterly stupid. Thus, I threw my initials away and instead began working in a fishy way

Glasgow city branding, getting sunburnt and view over Buchanan street in Glasgow

The start of the design process was the creation of a mission statement. I tried to summarize what I’m doing in the tone of voice that I feel most familiar with. Afterwards I spent days making sketches for a possible logo. Countless lousy fish drawings later I remembered that I used to sign homework in primary school in very special way: I drew a little fish and added “er” afterwards. Retrospectively, you could already tell what a genius would evolve out of this little boy back then (or so).

However, this was the sparking idea and after a few sketches and adding an outline of camera I eventually had the first draft of my logo in my hands. The following days were dedicated to iteration: draw, print, observe, repeat. I annoyed my friends and my family till I was in love with the shape of my logo. The next step was adding colours – deliberately a deep, greenish ocean blue and a salmon pink – and the corporate font – a straight, strong sans serif font coincidentally called “Catamaran”.

Once the basis could swim on its own, I brought everything together in a design manual. From wording to icon style and imagery – I tried position myself as a unique brand by showing a lot of personality. I don’t invariably take myself seriously and thus involved some humour into my identity as well. The aim of this is to make people laugh (or at least smirk) and consequently stick to their mind more easily. Apart from that, I dipped the images that I use within the brand into an unusual and strong colour-filter to catch people’s eyes. In the end it was “just” a matter of incorporating the determined design guidelines into stationary, social media platforms and the website you’re currently surfing through.

Well, that’s the story behind the transition of “mf-fotograf” to “fisch_er”. I hope you enjoy it as well and I’m always happy about some feedback.

Cheers, Michael

take a look at the brand manual: 
City centre of Edinburgh _ below some further impressions of Edinburgh

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Clyde Arc at night and strolling through the botanical gardens of Glasgow