Amber Li

The Chicago Air and Water Show - Rebrand


Spring 2024 / 6 weeks

Brand Identity and Strategy; Art Direction; Ai, Ps, Id, Ae, Glyphs


One August weekend on the Chicago shoreline. Free for all. 
Chicagoans and visitors from afar, plane geeks and the average laymen, young and old; millions attend the Chicago Air and Water Show every year. A lineup of military and civilian planes and boats perform stunts for the crowd, accompanied by food vendors along the Lake Michigan beach.

Spectacular, Streamlined, Spirited.

These core principles outline the direction of the system for this family-fun weekend out on the beach. The Air and Water Show is a feat of innovation, engineering, and practice, jammed into a weekend of local vendors and beachy fun. It’s special to have all of these things in one place and should be showcased as such. A lightheartedness of summer American holidays, such as Memorial Day or the Fourth of July, should be translated into this event, while still reflecting the vigor, strength, and speed of these amazing machines.

Collateral for this event can be extended into vendor tent graphics, beach towels,  and other summer-themed items that will use bold patterns to distinguish itself from the crowded Chicago cityscape. 
‘AirWater Regular’, custom variable type in action.
Animation possibilities for advertising on billboards, or even a loading screen. 

Generative and Kinetic Pattern Play

The new identity system is built 
upon single linear units reminiscent of flight paths, that come together form entire wavelengths in motion. The scalable diamond unit has infinite possibilities when it comes to making patterns. This has translated into a scalable variable font that can be extended into even more shapes and patterns in the future. 

Some can be done with just simple transformations and reflections of 
the logo:

Branding to last.
Color, typography, scale, tone of voice and more specifications of the system are outlined in the brief below.