Tapped to refresh the well-established Cooking Channel brand, broadcast design studio Elevation faced an interesting challenge: how do you fix what’s not broken? The answer was a multi-layered approach that centered on the brand’s key unifying strengths while broadening its vision and infusing it all with new energy. Watch highlights here.

“The refresh needed to work alongside Cooking Channel’s current on-air package, but also expand on its clean, pop vibe, keeping the definition of ‘cool’ very contemporary,” explained Elevation Art Director Dianne Frisbee. “We were fortunate to have such a great partner in Cooking Channel, which provided clear direction, an awesome foundation from which to build and the autonomy for us to explore different solutions, ID concepts and color combinations.” 

The Elevation team began by expanding on Cooking Channel’s sliding aesthetic. Using a grid design, Senior Designer Leonardo Garcia Franchi was able to divide the screen based on the network’s hero logo position, creating a consistent structure that anchored in the network’s look, while providing new opportunities to move and configure the screen.

Elevation then went to work on the IDs, developing three different styles encompassing logo branding, the network’s “Stay…” campaign and its talent. Inspired by the network’s “For Food People, By Food People” launch message, Elevation wanted to continue to speak the audience’s language, so the team developed an idea using cooking terms as a way to quickly add some insight into the talent’s personalities in three foodie phrases.

“The network really got behind the idea,” added Frisbee. “Cooking Channel is a destination for all food enthusiasts—people who are ‘interested in upping their Food IQ’—and this approach shares that passion… and shows we can have fun, too!”

The pacing and rhythm of the package’s animation was motivated by familiar cooking actions, such as cutting, chopping and peeling, and its sound design incorporated those sounds. The final toolkit comprised more than 130 separate elements including backplates, bugs, closes, endpages, flexis, lower thirds, opens, snipes, stunt and special/marketing packages and transitions, all created in AfterEffects Project for each of six color palettes.

“Elevation was able to keep everything that worked about the Cooking Channel brand identity and simply infuse it with renewed energy,” said Cooking Channel Creative Director Aaron McDannell. “Everything’s changed, and yet nothing’s changed – exactly what we had hoped for in this effort.”

Elevation is a design-centric production studio with offices in Atlanta and Buenos Aires. The company’s ambitious team of creative directors, designers, animators, editors and producers bring concepts to life for the broadcast and advertising industries. Concept to post, whether commercials, show opens or network packaging, Elevation collaborates with its clients to create stunning visuals and poignant storytelling. http://thisiselevation.com/