Brian Keenan can describe a lot of projects he’s willing to take on as co-founder of Openfield Creative
, but traditional advertising isn’t one of them. With the various skill sets in the air at Openfield, it’s probably not because the team couldn’t
tackle that type of project, but with a growing demand for mobile-friendly websites, he and his team focus on web and mobile design with an eye to brand identity.
Like so many Cincinnati creative firms, Openfield was founded by DAAP grads; Keenans fellow co-founders are Josh Barnes and Brandon Blangger. The firm typically steps in once an overarching brand strategy has been defined and helps to roll out brand concepts across websites, mobile apps and more. That may mean crafting large graphics, video or digital design for landing pages or app interfaces, those so-called touchpoints consumers use to interact with a given company or brand.
The Openfield team also creates logos and other brand-based design elements and design standards that define, for example, how photography is used with a particular brand, or specify unique design elements that set a company apart for a cohesive, branded look on company materials.
“We’re not an ad agency,” Keenan says. “We’re a design partner who gets in with our clients at a high level, understand the nuances.”
The company also offers staff-to-client interaction with anyone from their firm working on a project, rather than farming out interfacing to an account manager or other key staffer.
Keenan says the company name draws on a core value: Anyone (and everyone) is a creative, no matter what their background. Whether it be working with a new client or casting an eye toward the future, each member of the staff is expected to be ready to brainstorm.
“Immediately in front of us, we see a lot more mobile work as clients understand that their audiences are adopting global usage at an incredible rate,” Keenan says, noting that Openfield is creating more mobile apps than ever before.
But he’s more proud of his company’s ability to learn and change than its current skill set. “For all we know, we may not design websites in the future, but we’re confident that there’ll always be a digital experience component. We’ll always have a place using design and smart technology to put together what our clients need.”
By Robin Donovan