Responses by Kellie Chapple, general manager, Bulletproof
Background: Alex Clark Spirits approached Bulletproof with the opportunity to create a truly distinctive brand in the otherwise saturated world of craft and rye whiskeys. With a plethora of parity already in the market, Bulletproof was up for the challenge of creating a new rye whiskey that would not only stand out against the rest, but also seek to disrupt the category with a new point of view, born from an authentic American story.
Reasoning: Through our extensive research and immersion process, we identified Alexander Hamilton’s passionate spirit of defiance and rebellion as the inspirational platform for our new whiskey brand. The design for the whiskey Fort Hamilton brings the era to life, with the detailed storytelling on the label echoed by the intricate handcrafted illustrations. The scene captures Hamilton’s revolt against the British—a celebration of unconquerable spirit and a tribute to the war.
Challenges: Achieving the right level of finish in all aspects of print—from the copper foiling to the illustrative details to the uniquely colored paper substrate.
Favorite details: The intricate detail of the meticulously crafted cannon and battle scene is brought to life with copper foiling against a blue-green background, borrowing from rye whiskey category codes, while also reminiscent of the American Revolution era. The brand mark and typography were also inspired by military insignia and signage of the time and flanked by filigree, with the challenger mindset and Hamilton’s untiring spirit reinforced by a rallying call for “Liberty or Death.”
Visual influences: After scouring historical documents related to the man, we found Hamilton’s original uncompromising militia, the Hearts of Oak, who orchestrated a daring raid in lower Manhattan in 1772. The craft and detailing of the traditional wood cut illustrations depicts the Hearts of Oak revolt.
Specific demands: Our client’s knowledge of the whiskey category, as well as the on- and-off understanding of how effective brands in this space perform, provided us with the insights to create a truly distinctive rye whiskey.