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Written by Faye White, Creative Director & Marketing Manager, Wayward Brewing Co.

Our can design for El Capitan Hazy IIPA is in the running for Best Can Design in GABS Can Design Awards 2020. Vote for it here, or read on for the story behind the beer.

When the brew team told me we were planning a Hazy IIPA in our limited release calendar, I knew three things - it would be hoppy, it would be juicy as hell, and it would be a beast! A Double IPA like this, with a monster hop line-up and hefty ABV, needed artwork that would do it justice. Most Wayward can designs are inspired by the look and feel of vintage travel posters, with a modern twist. We think of locations, scenes or landmarks from around the world to suit the beer inside. Although we have a few local freelancers that we like to engage for some of our creative projects, we're proud to say that we are able to do the vast majority of our design and marketing work in-house, and this can design was no exception. Originally named Kermandie Queen, after the largest tree in Tasmania, the artwork seemed great in theory, but just wasn't cutting it in practice. With the haze craze showing no signs of slowing down, and the brew team working really hard to make it their best Hazy style to date, we knew the beer was going to be a popular style and the can artwork had to live up to the beer inside of it. We were about seven hours away from the printing deadline when we admitted defeat - this artwork wasn't working. We needed to start from scratch.

Brainstorming new names with some of the team, we searched for large landmarks around the world. Yosemite National Park giant, El Capitan, came to light. It was perfect! The artwork became clear straight away, with thoughts immediately going to "The Dawn Wall" documentary, where two free climbers attempt to scale the 3000ft Dawn Wall of El Capitan. When the light hits El Capitan just right, you start to see amazing dusky purple hues on the mountain face. That was our flagship colour for the label, now we just needed to get stuck in and create it. All in all, it took about four hours from concept to print. We like to joke about how we like last minute decision making at Wayward, but sometimes working under pressure pays off! We're chuffed that our El Capitan Hazy is in the running for the GABs Can Design Award. It's always great to see awesome feedback about our can designs on our socials, so many breweries work just as hard on what goes around the can as we do on what goes in it. Good on GABS for creating an award that celebrates that!

If you love our El Capitan can design, please chuck us a vote here. Cheers mates!

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