Joy Li

Graphic Design
February, 2017

Joy is a visual communications student from Sydney, Australia. Her work ranges from data visualisation to branding start ups, her work is well made and beautifully designed. For my personal identity and self branding project, I asked Joy some questions regarding her own process into self-branding and the thoughts that went in to it.

What made you go against the idea of using a logo on your business cards and instead use a font style with phrases?

Aside from the fact that I feel like I’m no good at designing logos, I think that not using a logo was instinctively a subconscious doing. I haven’t dissected it too much but I’m glad you asked since retrospection and self-evaluation is always beneficial.

I guess one of the reasons I didn’t feel the need to have this ‘identifying logo’ was the pre-existing connotations attached to my name. Being imbued with such universal meanings and qualities, I have in a sense become detached from it. Rather I took this insight as a point of reference and guiding principle into how I wanted to be perceived by others and most importantly myself.

Why these specific phrases is perhaps overtly philosophical, but I am a product of influence of other artists/authors that have come before. Both literally through my name and metaphorically in how I’m continually influenced by the social and historical contexts in which my design practice exists. I also hope that by not having a logo, there isn’t a need to be bound by a certain aesthetic. As a continually evolving designer, I wanted my brand to be built on a concept rather than a style.

When it came to fonts – are these ones you’ve used in the past or are these totally new and exciting?

The display font I used was Harbour designed by Gareth Hague. Personally, it was a new and interesting font as I haven’t used it in any designs previously. But time wise, it was designed in 1998 (almost as old as me) so it wasn’t anything recent. I decided to adopt it after reading about its influences and how the typeface ‘mixes ideas and shapes from modern and medieval lettering to make type that is new’. It clearly shared similar values in making new from ideals of the past. The other fonts I have used before and were paired mainly due to their reliability, functionality and compatibility with the display font.

Your colours are darker tones, but some of your other work you use bright colours / stereotypically feminine – what does this say about you?

I think I have a tendency to design with a feminine touch and I’m not quite sure why other than the fact that I’m a female designer and perhaps it’s just based on a persistent aesthetic style. Also perhaps that most things I have worked on I didn’t find it appropriate to have darker hues.

As you pointed out the tones in my branding are more moody compared to my other works and this perceived moodiness may be exasperated by the black background. But rightly so I think you’ve observed a more personal side of me that I do not actively show. Oddly enough, for someone whose name is suppose to be the epithet of ‘happiness,’ I certainly cannot live up to it as I’m innately pessimistic. Something that’s sort of strange to own up to, and I cannot say for sure, but the colours probably inherit some of these properties being not quite true in nature. Or I’m wrong and the colours might just be that I enjoy colour and coming up with pleasing combinations.

“Oddly enough, for someone whose name is suppose to be the epithet of ‘happiness,’ I certainly cannot live up to it as I’m innately pessimistic.”

Do you feel your self-branding represents your style right now and that it could be subject to change in the future, or do you see what you’ve made to last forever?

I think it’s a good reflection of my current design practice. I’m almost certain that it will change because the world changes and I will too.


Find joy’s work on Behance ︎︎︎



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Environmentally focused & illustration obsessed.