Ask anybody that’s lived here a while and they’ll tell you that Birmingham is a music town through and through.

Problem is, for years now, we haven’t had a major multi-day event to reflect that passion.

That’s why we were jazzed when we were invited to help the folks at Red Mountain Entertainment with a brand new weekend festival—the Sloss Music & Arts Festival.

Our assignment: Make it look good. And given the unique location of a 130-year-old iron furnace, we had a rich palette to draw from.

“We knew the history and importance of Sloss Furnaces to Birmingham, and we wanted to emphasize that in a big way,” said Jay Wilson, Partner at Red Mountain Entertainment. “We have been doing concerts at Sloss for over 30 years, and it has always been an amazing experience for the bands and the public.”

To conjure up the perfect brand for this new festival, our Associate Creative Director Matt Harris and our Junior Art Director Charlotte Wyatt joined forces and started from the beginning.

The inspiration? Well, they didn’t have to go very far.

“It was cool because doing this kind of branding gives us a lot of thematic focus that a lot of music festivals don’t have,” said Harris. “Normally it’s just a big open field or something. But this one, the location adds as much atmosphere as the bands do, so we got this great landscape and concept that we got to play with.”

“Red Mountain wanted to bring the old furnaces to life,” said Wyatt. “They wanted to pay homage to the old iconic facility.”

And bring it to life we did.

After combing through historical photos of Sloss Furnaces when it was active, Harris and Wyatt were inspired by the atmosphere, especially interior photography and elements like gauges in the walls.

As a result, the Sloss Fest branding is unlike any that has graced the venue for some time.

“Typically when people are branding Sloss, they don’t include imagery of a functioning furnace,” said Harris. “It’s always just what’s there, how it works right now. With a lot of the work we did, specifically with the big stage scrims that everyone will be seeing, we did these historic workers that would have been operating the furnace.”