Clif Bar’s ‘Luna Bar’

Luna Bar illustration and packaging

The Client

Based in Emeryville, California, Clif Bar & Company is well-known for producing organic foods and drinks. The company’s flagship product, the Clif Bar, was created by Gary Erickson and Lisa Thomas in 1992. CEO Kevin Cleary says Clif Bar holds 33 percent of the market share in the health and lifestyle bar category, which is expected to grow to $6.2 billion by 2018.

The Challenge

In 1999 Clif Bar approached Visigy Design, where I was working as a Designer, looking for branding for a women’s energy bar—the first on the market. Clif Bar wanted a brand identity that presented women as both graceful and strong.

The Solution

We helped them formulate a concept and choose the ‘Luna’ name, leveraging the classic connection between women and the moon. (We also had to dissuade them from using the name ‘Bella Donna,’ or ‘beautiful woman’—they genuinely didn’t know belladonna is a poisonous plant.) Working with Art Director Suzy Leung, I created a vibrantly-colored illustration showing dancing women silhouetted against mountains and sky. This logo first appeared in 2000 on the packaging for Luna Bar’s three original flavors. I also worked on the packaging for the bars and their 12-pack boxes.

Luna Bars are currently one of the top selling nutrition bars in the United States. The strength of the original design kept this branding largely unchanged until 2016—16 years!