h3. Retro future treatment
The Cranfield logo is a typographic treatment, that seeks to occupy a different space than the previously reviewed Brunel logo. Primarily a Science, Management and Technology institution with an interesting Military and Aeronautical history, Cranfield offers postgraduate qualifications and as such appeals to a slightly different audience from the usual fresh faced udergraduate.
The graphic ideas in the brand guidelines develop this theme with an overtly technical feel, created through angular layouts, modular blocks, patterns, a minimal palette and a very distinctive typeface. The overall feel is of a retro-futurism from the viewpoint of the 1970s – a style I happen to like very much.
A rooted wordmark
Ironically, the Cranfield wordmark contains no reference to this. The only obvious connection to the futuristic feel is in the grey, which is used extensively. Instead it is a delicate lowercase serif split with a ligature that has an extended stem that anchors the uppercase of ‘university’.
It’s a very controlled feel, no doubt aiming for a confident, relaxed and a perhaps a little aloof tone of voice. Difficut to talk about the wordmark without reference to the guidelines where a font called Defused is used. It looks very similar to ITC Bauhaus and nice to see such a bold contrast with the wordmark.
Part of a system
On the face of it a uninspired logo, but when taken as part of the wider system it creates a distinctive look. However, I don’t know whether to be impressed or scared by the idea ‘Brand guardians’ in the corporate brand guidelines!