I think the shape itself is a pretty appealing, with now jarring sharp angles or edges. It’s a prototypical unthreatening shape. Vaguely dynamic in a clincal way. The typography contained within is a nice contrast. Very specifically, Helvetica Neue LT Pro is the typeface – adding to the medical feel.
The most interesting information gleaned from the guidelines is the system of specific graphic devices designed to use the logo in an illustrative capacity.
Called the ‘river lockup’ the plectrum is combined with a representation of the River Thames made up of multiple coloured circles. Apparently reprsenting a journey of transformation, there are detailed explanations and variations for many different combinations.
I think the idea of a system of graphic devices to support the brand is an innovative one. In addition to the River device, there is the stream and the orbs, which combine with the logo to give designers tasked with creating interesting brand compliant work a solid set of tools. How they put these elements together is the challenge.
The combination of the differing word order systems of English and Welsh is used to create a word-mark with top – bottom symmetry. Both languages are rendered in a typeface that seems to be a combination inscriptional/sans-serif, that also manages to suggest calligraphy. The subtle curves on the strokes and the different sizes of the letters create a craft-like effect that seems to be a nod to the celtic roots of Wales, similar in feel to that used on the Wales Millenium Centre The simple placement of rectangles above each other, in effect combines two logos, and they are brought together by the muted red.
Vaguely reminiscent of a bio hazard sign, this logo is described in the identity toolkit as a link symbol, it is explained thus –
bq. The Link is made up of three connected Cs, which stand for Canterbury Christ Church. It also signifies the three core activities of the University: teaching, research, and administration.
Again, the detailed toolkit tells us that the Typeface is Humanist 777 by Adiran Frutiger.
The combination of these two things make this logo fairly typical of a new university style. The slightly generic symbol and sans-serif combination makes for a mildly antiseptic logo, though it needs to said the long name makes it a challenge to be compact. Trading personality in this way makes it difficult to imagine any real affection for the logo, instead pursuing a low risk strategy.
A logo that seems to hark back to the late seventies, with a bold, even garish colour scheme, a grid like representation of a globe, overlaid with panels rather incongruously throwing in more traditional elements of book and bugles.
The globe and panes combine with the font to create a nostalgic feel, free of the softer swirls, swooshes and treatments of modern logos. I guess not intentional, but the bugles seem to suggest some kind of global postal service.
Overall, it seems unabashed by it’s awkwardness and the choice of Avant Garde Gothic, enhances the retro feel. A bold choice, that certainly makes it stand out. Even if I can’t help thinking it could have a bit part in this video, whilst being accompanied by this tune
The large curves that taper on the serifs make for a nice contrast throughout the letters, providing the gravitas that established universities are often looking for. The flourish on the ‘of’ doesn’t seem incongruous and the overall effect is plain and direct.
A green/blue on top a blue background doesn’t provide much contrast the graphic element of this logo, which is 3 mountains represented in a bold style reminiscent of the 70s in it’s simplicity. Why they are cropped at the left and right I’m not sure. Perhaps the use of the mountains is seeking to create a sense of place, implying a rugged, rural setting? The treatment seems more appropriate for a range of hiking gear. Having said that, I think the bold style could perhaps have worked had the typography matched the graphic treatment and been more adventurous.
Instead, a stolid uppercase serif is used, lacking any flourishes or quirks it tends to add the to the impression of a logo caught between two stools. Lacking the hutzpah of a young institution or the gravitas of an older one.
Judging by the tops of the lower case n, m and g looks to be using FF Dax with the modification of the lower case e straightened. A fresh face without too much modulation in the strokes – interest instead coming from the way the aforementioned m’s, n’s and g have arcs that finish abruptly at the junction of a vertical stroke.
The castle is simply drawn with some nice details to show light coming from the right. At the bottom is I presume, a representation of the River Trent. The combination of the two window slits in the tower and the river suggest (to me at least), a slightly whimsical face.
A simple vertical line delineates the text and graphic portions of the logo, with either side anchored around it. A neat little separator for a logo that is a confident use of ‘heritage’ imagery with a contemporary typeface.
Strangely disparate logo. The illustrative part seems to function independently of the typography.
On first glance the illustration is suggestive of the famous double helix of DNA , but this is refuted here. Instead it is more mundanely signifying the coming together and intertwining of the UNiversity’s aims and outlooks. As such it’s less specific and also less interesting.
The typography looks like a combination of Kabel and Gill Sans. The ends of the diagonals on the K and V are finished square, like Kabel, whilst the letter U has no spur in common with Gill Sans. It is very widely spaced, giving an almost art deco air. It reminded me of a less successful version of the Leeds University logo.
The simplicity of the typography perhaps needs a correspondingly strong pictorial element, which the ribbons don’t quite provide.
If you look closely (and I hope you enjoyed the reference), you can see representations of the human figure in various states of motion, which combine to make up a rose. You can see this more clearly in the previous version of the logo, which perhaps suggests that the new version is aiming to emphasise yorkshire rose’s prominence rather than the more generic people. Oddly enough, I found that once I’ve seen the people in the logo, I now have a little trouble seeing it as a rose.
Set in all lower case and displayed around the rose, the text is condensed Helvetica Neue Condensed leading to a vaguely utilitarian feel. Not sure about the alignment the text – I feel that a strong vertical alignment might have provided a better contrast with the looser flower style.
The graphic element of the logo is the combination of two letter U’s interlocking on a background of 3 colours. The U’s are from a srif font, with one smaller than the other. The white one bleeds to the edge of the blue box, making the serifs look almost triangular. The light blue U in the foreground is more intact, but has an odd green patch appended on the top. If there’s some significance to the shapes created by the interlocking and negative space I’m afraid it’s lost on me. It seems overly fussy, and a distracting rendering of two letters.
In contrast, the choice of Optima for university font with it’s large x-height and delicate curves makes for a very open and fresh feel. The combination of colour and font weight make for a nice balance; the ‘Ulster’ is bold without becoming overpowering.