Big Nerd Ranch—Brand Refresh

*Featured on Brand New’s Spotted
lead designer &
art director—

brand identity, launch activation
As their field matured, Big Nerd Ranch’s work had drifted away from their original offering of coding bootcamps. They’d developed a reputation as an engineering firm for some of tech’s most innovative players.

Through a full-scale strategy, we helped them uncover a single core purpose that applied as both a training organization and a development firm—

To match their new position, our team at Matchstic embarked on an ambitious refresh of Big Nerd Ranch’s brand, developing a bold and warm look that would feel at home on the ranch and serve the intricacy of their innovative work.

We were careful to incorporate elements from their legacy visuals, including their well-loved logo: a cowboy hat topped with a propeller. Pulling the propeller shape into the brim of the hat, we were able to signal both Big Nerd Ranch’s process of infinite reimagining and their ability to propel clients forward.

To complete the look, we paired Big Nerd’s new hat with a color palette filled with organic hues, trading ubiquitous digital black for earthy browns.

We chose some well-wrought typefaces and a photography style that focused on the end users of Big Nerd Ranch’s work, stressing human experiences over technical imagery.

Their new print pieces use wide-open layouts, embodying ranch-like open terrain and unbound possibility.

Knowing that we were creating a brand for an organization filled with tinkerers, coders, and designers, we built a foundation for future growth. It’s jam-packed with swagger, in-jokes, and potential. We can’t wait to see where our partners take it.

Credits —

Brand Identity © 2018-19

Role: Design Lead & Creative Direction
Designers: Jason Combs & Nathan Young, with logo support from Todd Durkee & Meghan Stewart
Strategists: Sarah Melnyk, Devin Bambrick
Writers: Devin Bambrick, Jason Combs
Project Manager: Maggie Philpotts
Studio: Matchstic
Client: Big Nerd Ranch
© 2024 Brit Blankenship