Case Study

Domtar: Make Your Mark on Cougar®


During the summer of 2015, Squires & Company was asked by Domtar to create a new promotion targeted at the design and printing community that they would showcase in May at the 2016 How Design Live Conference. To encourage creative exploration, Domtar kept the parameters of the project simple–find a unique way of showcasing the versatility and appeal of Domtar’s Cougar family of fine papers to a diverse audience in a piece that was a showstopper. Squires & Company was given a month to explore various concepts and provide Domtar with a strategy to surround and promote the final piece. So, in early August 2015, we ventured to Fort Mill, South Carolina to present our ideas and directions to Domtar.


Domtar became drawn to one of the concepts which explored the idea that businesses are all different and have different needs. Cougar, with its lineup of offset and digital papers in a variety of weights, is a perfect solution for any business looking to create a cohesive and integrated system of materials. The direction chosen explored how four different business personas, The Artisan, The Restaurateur, The Humanitarian and The Legacy could find all of the options they needed within Cougar’s family of papers. To hook in the design audience, Squires & Company would craft unique identities for each of the four personas and a system of materials appropriate to their needs. Each company was given a backstory, and treated just like we were designing a system of corporate identity materials for an actual client. The promotional piece would walk the audience through the various personas providing context about the company, design tips and advice on how to use Cougar most effectively, and a suite of materials that the user could interact with and see the final printed results.

Craft & Trade, the artisan persona, features a retail start up that centered around hand-crafted items and ephemera. The identity we designed portrayed a warm and humanistic look by featuring beautiful product photography and a palette of rich colors. The components of the system, from the hang tag to the stepped accordion brochure, are tactile, warm and personal.

Tend, the restaurateur persona, highlights a farm-to-table restaurant experience that focuses on serving fresh dishes with a modern twist. The system we designed utilized different printing techniques, from letterpress coasters to digitally printed business cards and menu.

Bask Foundation, the humanitarian persona, portrays a non-profit humanitarian organization funding pediatric aid around the globe. The design of materials needed to set a serious tone, but be eye catching and impactful. Using a bright pink neon spot color, the design was left simple and quiet, but the colorful effect of the printed components speak volumes.

Dalton Press, the legacy persona, highlights a family legacy taking over a printing business and modernizing it. An oversized direct mail brochure is the centerpiece of the set and establishes the history of the company while discussing the technological innovations the company has established to modernize the business. The design is a balance of old and new, juxtaposing vintage imagery with modern design flourishes.


The piece debuted at the 2016 How Design Live Conference in Atlanta, Georgia and was given a great rollout at Domtar’s booth on the exposition floor. Squires was on-hand to witness masses of designers invade the convention center and flock to the booth to get their hands on the latest promotion. Domtar and Squires & Company have set a precedent for delivering promotional pieces that not only showcase Cougar as a premier fine paper, but leave a memorable and lasting impression on the audience and this piece is no exception. Supplies are limited, so get yours before they’re all gone.

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