Husmee studio designs a bespoke and experimental identity for research project Snifform

The identity is both functional and playful, featuring a publication, an array of posters, animations, and a custom typeface named Sniffont.

After design school, Alain Villastrigo found himself "lucky enough" to have gained experience in Oscar Mariné's OMB studio based in Madrid. With the skills and know-how under his belt, it was at this very moment that he decided to launch his own studio named Husmee, located in the Spanish city of San Sebastián.

This was in 2007, and ever since, Alain – under the guise of his studio – has worked across corporate identities, editorial design and visual language. "The studio was borne from the need to 'do'," he tells Creative Boom, "from the desire to experiment, to create, to work with form, typography and structure, through ideas and concepts."

Applying this mindset to every brief, Alain started to build a solid reputation in the design world, and the projects started to come pouring in. To such lengths that the studio's portfolio is jam-packed with branding work and identities for a range of different clients, all of which navigate around the studio ethos of finding functional solutions, all the while incorporating an experimental design aesthetic.

To achieve this, the studio spends plenty of time in the research phase to facilitate the best outcome possible. Then comes the composition and structure – the building of a "system" – used to organise the project and guide the concept. And lastly, the studio "will see how [the] protagonists work" and start incorporating colour, typography, shapes and photography.

Whatever the brief, Husmee's main goal is to enhance a brand's communication with people, to think creatively, and systemise ideas and concepts. This can be seen in its most recent work for Snifform, a research project that looks at the architectural structures of our cities. Tasked to execute an identity based on the terms "build" or "de-build", the studio went deep into the visual codes and experiences of the urban environment.

"It all starts with observing and searching," Alain says. The result is a printed publication, a series of posters and animations, plus a custom typeface named Sniffont. Additionally, the studio devised its own Snifform Grid, which is based on the building El Kursaal, designed by architect Rafael Moneo and based in San Sebastián.

"By making use of the elementary forms, the visuals come to life through organising and de-organising the elements within the grid," explains Alain. "Different formal variants and an experimental typeface have been created as a starting point, but its visual language is practically infinite. The interesting thing is that, since we work within the same compositional system, everything we do will always be Snifform; it will always have its identity."

Incorporating a mix of a static and moving image, the Snifform identity is both functional and undeniably creative. Built on curiosity and a desire to push things as far as possible, Husmee proves to us all that aesthetics don't need to be sacrificed while making good design. In the future, we can expect many more projects of a similar ilk – this includes a bunch of personal projects, new commissions with clients, plus a project looking at the senses.


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