This content was originally published by The Hop Review, a digital magazine that joined the Hop Culture family in March 2020.
This piece was written by Jack Muldowney.
Alaskan Brewing, founded in 1986, is an American craft brewery that has proven it can stand the test of time. However, their packaging looked like it never quite made it out of the late 80’s. For better or worse, it was a look that the brewery owned and rode well for decades. But, as has been proven in this volatile industry, no one can remain stagnant.
So, as of spring 2019, Alaskan moved to ditch its outlined type and clunky packaging design for a more favorable, updated typographic-plus-illustration approach, thanks to the team behind Blindtiger Designin Seattle.
From Blindtiger: ”Nothing stands still in the beer industry. Consumer needs are continuously evolving and market competition is getting fiercer every minute. Brands that don’t stay on top of these changes become stale. Answering to these evolving needs and the demands of their consumers, Alaskan Brewing embarked on a major update to bring cans to market with a fresh new look.
Along with these changes, Alaskan Brewing wanted to reinvigorate their artwork. We worked closely with their team to bring the story of Alaska back to the labels. Their home is unlike that of most beer in the cooler and we worked hard to capture it through dynamic and energetic illustrations capturing the spirit of the Alaskan landscape.”
Avoiding some tempting of-the-now design choices, Blindtiger was able to create a system that is sure to outlast trends of the next handful of years. And while this refresh might not get some design nerds jumping out of their seats, it is an excellent example of how to progress an industry stalwart along in their brand’s journey–without alienating the audience that helped get them there.
Photos & graphics via Alaskan Brewing Co. & Blindtiger Design