Emigrating with his parents to the US from Panama, Victor Dabah started a shoe company from the basement of his parents’ house. He then set up his first office in the Empire State building.

One of the first companies to trade with the newly opening China in the early 70’s, it is a story of adventure, innovation and New York scale success.

To do justice to this story we spent two weeks conducting interviews and getting to know the people that make up this company. Although most won’t have heard of Vida, they are the team behind some of America’s largest shoe brands, handling, design, R&D, logistics, manufacturing, international legal and tax issues to final sale and everything in-between.

Vida themselves do not want to be well known, they want the shoe brands they represent to be the focus of attention.

When creating the identity, we realised that illustration was the way to make the delineation between Vida and its brands, all of which use photography. Illustration enables a level of abstraction; so the viewer isn’t distracted by specific fashions and styles of footwear. It allowed us to focus on the core values of the brand, revealing a very human story of a creative and welcoming family company and balancing this with their size, financial power and business acumen.