During the first semester of our last year of Web Design Bachelor at ICAN Design (Paris), students were split into teams of about four people in order to create, from concept to launch, a digital communication agency “specialized in..” ; meaning our agency had to innovate into a specific domain and apply fundamental digital concepts to an unrelated field. We started the project by focusing on a concept corresponding to the aforementioned criteria, then built its visual identity and finally, developed a complete and functional web application (design, editorial content, front and back-end development).
The idea behind Merlin was building a bridge between kids and the digital field: between childhood, where imagination reigns supremely and everything seems possible; and new technologies, such as augmented reality, able to give life to their most peculiar dreams.
Merlin is a 360° communication agency specialized in cultural projects targeting children from 6 to 10 years old. Our idea ? Mastering everything internally to focus on our clients. We choose to have every skill sets represented in our agency in order to be more flexible and reactive when facing new challenges and changes.
Our agency works for cultural institutions as well as entertainment enterprises offering products and services targeting young children. This sector includes, but isn’t limited to, illustrated books, museum expositions, monuments visits… We bring communication strategies and solutions brought to life by new technologies, illustration and storytelling. Our goal is to support the commercial campaign in order to put our clients’ products and events under the spotlight.
Our agency’s name was chosen based on the character from King Arthur’s tale. The name evokes magic, epopees and legends ; the character embodies benevolence and power. We wanted to modernize the character and yet still keep him goofy, fun and endearing. We therefore drew him with a surprised expression and exaggerated notable elements such as his mustache and beard.
Merlin is a multifaceted agency : we can advise you on any matter you could doubt about. We’re also a creative agency, involved in your projects’ developments as a whole in order to make them successful. We are, finally, a technical agency, which can design and build any asset your projects need to bring them to life.
The delicate style of our illustrations enabled us to add multiple elements without packing the website with too much visual pollution. Colorful trees, unworldly shapes and pastel colours are mixed together to correlate with children’s imaginative realm. The light and “imperfect” illustration style calls to mind kids’ drawings, as though they drew themselves.
We wanted to create a story, a whole other world in which Merlin would come help the visitor on different matters. For our brand’s image, we had to create the perfect mix between imagination and technology ; we had to show off skills such as communication (both visual and expressive), design and development. The website is a one-page architecture, with popup to detail our activities, work, blog posts… Another part is named “Le live” where different posts of interest on various social networks are gathered in real time.
No content-management systems were included in the structure of the code, as the website was considered more as a tool to showcase a concept than a final product per se. It therefore had to be efficient — we favorised design over uselessly complicated programs that would slow down the website, therefore tainting the user experience in the process, and limit us creatively.