Old Crow Magazine
Old Crow is a web magazine celebrating the cultural landscape of Gros Morne National Park, including music, art and writing. I worked with Tom Cochrane and the rest of the Old Crow team to design a visual identity and develop the website. The website was at oldcrowmagazine.com from 2015—2020.
Designing the Logo
I start by sketching on paper, then use vector drawing to fine-tune ideas. I played with a few different concepts and got feedback from the client before zeroing in on the feather shape. We liked that it nicely conveyed the “crow” theme, while also suggesting a writing quill.
“Old Crow” takes its name from a hill in the park. The feather’s shape evokes a Gros Morne landscape: the distinctive red Tablelands, rolling hills, and a lone windswept tree, all reflected in rhythmic water.
I wanted the logo to convey the lightness of travel and exploration. Finding a whole new world in unexpected places. Bright, bold colours and rhythmic shapes give it a contemporary, cheerful look.
The typeface echoes the curves in the logo. It’s meant to strike a sophisticated tone while remaining playful and slightly off-kilter. I spent a lot of time tweaking the curves and colours, and creating variations of the logo.
From here, I began to build a larger visual identity for the magazine. We wanted Old Crow’s web presence to have these qualities:
- lightness (centering the content, not the interface, and making it easy to engage)
- exploration (using bold, contemporary type and colour)
- transparency (subtle gradients that add verve and visual unity)
- magic (something a little unexpected that draws you in, like Gros Morne’s otherworldly landscapes).
Here are two pages from the visual identity guide I created for Old Crow:
Developing the Website
Our goal was to create a stylish, modern website to tell stories of Gros Morne in an engaging way. The site showcases photos, video and writing about the park, and acts as a hub for Old Crow’s social media presence.
Old Crow Magazine uses a custom-designed WordPress theme. It’s fully responsive, designed with mobile in mind. I wanted the site to be easy to update – for example, colour gradients are automatically applied to background photos using CSS.
Having grown up near Gros Morne National Park, I really appreciate how Old Crow highlights the amazing things happening there. It was a pleasure to build a site around Tom Cochrane’s brilliant videography and photography, and I’m thrilled to have been part of this innovative project.