Te Awahou Riverside Cultural Park
Visitors from far and wide love to stop at Foxton’s Te Awahou Riverside Cultural Park (TARCP) – featuring the multi-cultural and award winning Te Awahou Nieuwe Stroom (TANS) which houses both Maori and Dutch museums and the flour-grinding windmill ‘De Molen’, an impressive art gallery, library and cafe. The park is also home to the Flax Stripper Museum and Whare Manaaki workshop that features traditional Māori arts. TARCP is a place different strands of culture and language are woven together into exceptional space. Tangata whenua, the Dutch community and Horowhenua District Council came together to showcase of what can be achieved in a multi-cultural partnership.
TANS already had a logo and basic guidelines in place that we took inspiration from, but little else to develop a brand upon. Working with the Oranjehof, Piriharakeke, Horowhenua District Council and Horowhenua Tourism brands we were tasked with creating an umbrella brand for the wider area – Te Awahou Riverside Cultural Park.
Our idea was to create something adaptable and interchangeable, to highlight all the different offerings that the area held. To achieve this, we needed a distinctive style. We were stoked to collaborate with Greg Straight, a renowned illustrator to bring our vision to life. Greg toured the Foxton and Foxton Beach areas with us to get a feel for the surrounds and he developed illustrations that Lemonface Creative then used to piece together larger illustrations and include in the marketing materials. We settled on a quirky, hand drawn, expressive, raw, but ultimately friendly style.
Our work spanned across all mediums behind the new brand and the strategic creative identity that steered our direction. We produced print, digital and physical items that included; new website, launch event marketing material, sponsorship booklets, wall illustration, promotional items social media graphics, signage (in 3 x languages), Pull up banners, print and digital advertising and multiple templates.
Several decades ago, I started my marketing career as a copywriter in a small advertising studio, in the Netherlands. I often look back on those days, as the most enjoyable times I ever had in my profession.
The designer and I would brainstorm and work in sync. We understood each other intuitively and complemented each other. We collaborated smoothly, and we would enjoy making things work.
In later years, I would work with Saatchi & Saatchi and other great branding agencies – on the client side. But I never experienced this kind of joy again, until I came to work at Te Awahou Nieuwe Stroom in Foxton.
Sarah-Jayne had done early work on the brand for ‘our beautiful place’. So it was only logical that we would start collaborating on other promotional work. What I had not expected, was her passion and enthusiasm for our visitor destination and community centre. And the ease with which we could communicate and agree on producing the work we undertook.
We would have a meeting or a phone call to discuss a job, and in the beginning they were mainly one-off items. What I experienced though, was that no job was too big or small. The effort she put into it all, was of equal value, quality and intensity. No surprise then, that Sarah Jayne eventually got the job of upgrading our Te Awahou Nieuwe Stroom brand.
We asked her to produce a booklet in an extended visual house style – more playful, colourful and friendly than anything we had done before. But still of a high artistic quality, that aligns with our award-winning building design and exhibitions.
I briefed Sarah-Jayne. She brought in bright new ideas. And with ease and intuitively, we collaborated smoothly to produce a booklet about Te Awahou Nieuwe Stroom that surpassed everybody’s expectations. Our upgraded brand is now rock solid, and expresses perfectly what we stand for.
It was as if I finally had returned to those outstanding times all those decades ago, of working with a designer who knows their trade inside out.
Sarah-Jayne is excellent at what she does. She’s a brilliant creative. Makes it look so easy. And she is a joy to work with. I’m looking forward to more projects to collaborate on in the future.
Arjan van der Boon