Co-creating a Visual Identity


Tandem cross-border collaboration program

Civic Engagement, Professional Development

My Role
Leading research, development & design

Design Research, Design Strategy, Brand Design, Graphic Design, Illustration


The Challenge

Tandem, a development program for cultural collaboration, is rapidly growing, with multiple new programs and partners located in different countries. The team lacked a shared design language and a simple way to explain what they do. As a designer and researcher with a strong knowledge of their field, I led the co-creation of a human-centred vision for their visual communications.

The Result

The end result was more than corporate design. From new logos to a handbooks, the new visual identity reflected Tandem’s approach - bold, trusting, playful. It also generated new engagement with its community. It was a set of do-it-together tools that laid a solid foundation for Tandem’s future projects and the team’s day-to-day communications.



My research started with three days of immersive observation at a Tandem meeting in Berlin. I interviewed participants about their experiences and motivations for participating in the program. Back in the office with the Berlin Tandem team, we developed user stories and employed contextual inquiry to consider how the team uses design in their everyday work.



Working closely with the Berlin Tandem team, we then developed new ideas using methods like card sorting, personas, and storytelling. An illustrated book, a presentation with key insights, and perspective cards communicated this vision for Tandem’s design and storytelling.



Through group brainstorming, perspective development, pattern recognition, and key insights, we generated a strategy for communicating Tandem’s mission and values. I produced a visual project planning toolkit defining the vision and priorities.



We designed tools based on Tandem’s new visual identity, including a booklet about the Tandem process, infographics, and postcards. Our last phase was gathering additional feedback and making adjustments.


What we made

  • Visual identity, including logos, icons, illustrations

  • Design manual and written styleguide

  • A new website developed by Somtijds

  • Infographics explaining the Tandem process

  • Visualizations mapping key concepts: posters, maps + postcards

  • Prototype for handbooks outlining Tandem process and participants at Tandem events

  • Postcard campaign promoting new Tandem Europe program

  • Photo stories sharing key insights from Tandem events

  • An illustrated book collecting participants’ key stories


Images courtesy of: Tandem/Constanze Flamme (1,2), Timo Ohler (3,5,6,8,10,12,14), Tandem (11).