SPIRA Sales Corporation was created as partners of TOTO Philippines at the onset of year 2007 to address the growing demand for high-performing bathroom and sanitary wares, fittings and accessories in the Philippines. SPIRA distributes TOTO products through a vast network of retailers that are strong industry players, like Wilcon Builders Depot, Inc. The distributorship network is strategically located mainly in Metro Manila and the rest of Luzon area. Apart from high quality products, SPIRA also boasts of a talented team which is equipped and trained to excel in customer service. Products and manpower are the two main strengths and investments of the company that ensure customer satisfaction. In time for the grand opening of the new TOTO Philippines Showroom at the 1st and 2nd floor of Ridgewood Square, C5 Road, Taguig, Metro Manila, SPIRA is all set to rebrand itself in this new endeavor.
The original logo of SPIRA is an example of a direct representation of what the sales company is all about. I interviewed current employees and asked them if they knew what the graphic in the logo really was, and all of them were unanimous in identifying the image as a toilet piece ("inidoro" to be exact). I thought that the old image would have to be changed, even if its shape was quite indecipherable. This is a case, that the product may not necessarily provide a wholesome image of the company. I was asked by the management to look at their website at www.totophilippines.com to look at their products, find inspiration and get a feel of the image they wanted to convey as a company.
TOTO Ltd. is the world's largest toilet manufacturer and produces the most innovative and highly technological sanitary wares around. I didn't realize until I reviewed their catalogue how much creativity, research and technology can go in producing their products. Their mission is to enhance humanity's relationship with water and with this; they strive in producing products and designs that provide seamless user experience. The image of TOTO is simply elegant (and works similarly to SONY's logo) and classic. I wanted SPIRA's logo to look harmoniously side by side with this TOTO image, and although I wanted to go for a similar typographical approach, the management was insistent with the integration of a graphical component.
I provided their management with 3 initial proposals based on key elements I drew from SPIRA's and TOTO's portfolio:
- PEARL within a SHELL / WATER DROPLET concept – The first thing I saw in SPIRA's website was this beautiful picture of a water droplet bouncing off from a rippled surface. I thought I should create a graphic based on this, but infusing it with the pearl-like qualities of TOTO's products, hence making it also look like an open shell.
- SPIRAL / WHIRLPOOL concept – The word "Spira" actually forms the root of spiral, thus a graphic based on the name might be good. Also, the "whirlpool" image evokes a dynamic personality of water.
- NAUTILUS SHELL concept – The products are heavily inspired from natural sources, so I looked for a natural symbol that infuses both the shell and the spiral elements.
Obviously, I was drawing references from nature, and used elements commonly associated with water and pearl/shells. Among the three, what do you think the management chose to develop?
SPIRA chose the spiral/whirlpool concept and they immediately liked the image being dynamic even without me providing an explanation of the graphic (I wanted to see whether they can relate to the logos). The comment they gave was how I treated the 2 swirls in the graphic… it seemed "deconstructed" or "dissolved". They were right. Although, I thought the effect was cool, it wasn't what they wanted to be. If there was a way I can make the swirls look more solid, while avoiding making it look like other swirl based logos.
I experimented using various treatments, from making the lines thicker, using stripes, etc. but I settled with the use of digital brush in creating the swirls. They look more solid than the previous, but more importantly, they looked organic and alive. Here it is, and the description I provided them.
"The logo of SPIRA Sales Corporation consists of 2 swirls forming a subtle upward-facing "S" in the negative space between them. The symbol represents the dynamism and harmony between the two main strengths and investments of the company: high-quality products and competent manpower. Also, the swirls represent the twin ideals of leadership and excellence, merging together with success as their goal. The color blue represents humanity's relationship with water (referencing TOTO's philosophy); while the color green represent's humanity's relationship with the earth and its brethren (a pledge to environmental and social responsibility)…"
It is wonderful how the SPIRA team feels proud to have this new logo. It is equally amazing how the new logo seems to bring out individual interpretations of the logo. Some members of the team described it as their "yin-yang", "whirlpool" or "spinning water." Cool imagery… signs that they are inspired and drawn to it – and I'm just very glad it is no longer their "inidoro." By the way, the showroom as well as this logo will be launched this early March.