Dad Agency turns to fun, flowy aesthetics to illustrate techy concepts for Web3 brand Squid

“We went into the project not knowing much about the web3 space”: Dad Agency on how “ignorance” helped push its work for Squid in new directions.

12 December 2022


If, like us, you haven’t heard the term ‘Web3 cross-chain swap protocol’ before, don’t worry. After learning all about it on the recent Web3 brand Squid, Dad Agency gives us a rundown. “In a nutshell, Squid is a cross chain swap protocol meaning that people can easily swap assets [such as tokens] between different [block]chains [like Bitcoin or Ethereum], which was previously difficult and time-consuming.” This idea of a fluid, easy exchange is central to the design work the Amsterdam-Rotterdam agency has just unveiled for Squid. “Squid is like a river, with things flowing freely along it,” says the agency.

With a brand name like Squid, the wordmark is suitably inky, with the river analogy represented through “organic and flowy” touches, Dad Agency describes. The same typographic style is mirrored in a custom monogram, and in a series of abstract flowing shapes that Dad Agency describes as “weaving” throughout the brand. To push the concept of exchange further, Dad Agency has introduced a series of illustrations showing mechanical processes interacting, with additional imagery and animation by Dave Renton.


Dad Agency: Squid (Copyright © Squid / Dad Agency, 2022)

“People are really loyal to specific blockchains (for example Bitcoin or Ethereum),” Dad Agency states. And each of these chains comes with its own culture and references. These illustrations also serve to show how “Squid sits between blockchains and allows these different ‘cultures’ to communicate”. On the Squid website – which is built by Joseph Pleass – the illustrations are broken down into smaller processes to depict certain concepts, like the “One-click flows” Squid allows. The site has other features too; a spray brush drawing tool allows you to play around with some of the tendril forms that appear across the brand.

As you might have already spotted, Squid doesn’t look like many other brands in the Web3 space. “We found a lot of the aesthetics in this space to be very dark mode, space-theme and techy which we wanted to avoid,” Dad Agency says. “It’s obviously a really young sector with lots of startups and experimental projects – our job was to encapsulate this spirit but also make Squid stand out.” For example, Squid opts to represent the community-centred aspect of Web3 at multiple touch points through mascots and emojis, with the agency even creating “an emoji set for the Squid discord and fun merch that they can hand out at events”.

GalleryDad Agency: Squid (Copyright © Squid / Dad Agency, 2022)

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Dad Agency: Squid (Copyright © Squid / Dad Agency, 2022)

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About the Author

Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.

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