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MovingBrands 2011 HP Progress Marque Logo Now Being Used

Great news, reported by Verge, that HP are now going to be using the HP Progress Marque logo design, that MovingBrands came up with back in 2011.

I clearly remember when MovingBrands initially announced their collaboration with HP on a much larger branding project.

Many were a little disappointed that HP didn't decide to use the new logo design, and it was left as an unused, and unapproved, logo design concept.

Clearly it wasn't completely forgotten, and maybe some one at HP saw the Progress Marque's potential somewhere down the line.



Hewlett Packard have now announced that they will be using the MovingBrands logo, dubbed the 'Progress Marque' designed back in 2011, for a newly released premium range of laptop, called Spectre 13.

I think the Progress Marque certainly ties in nicely with the Spectre name, they sort of feel they do fit together.

Obviously a James Bond connection comes to mind with 'Spectre', and for me Spectre does create feelings of: hardness, angled, sharp, clarity etc etc etc.

A bit cheesy maybe, the Spectre name… OK, quite a lot I think.



Three Brand Logos?

Now there three different brand logos used: Hewlett Packard Enterprise, HP and now the HP Laptops "Progress Mark".


I realise that HPE now covers corporate hardware and services, whilst HP deals with the computer and printer business, but still… now having three HP logos.

It sure is good, from a design perspective, to finally see that Progress Mark being used.


Armonico Consort AC Academy Website

Really REALLY excited to be working with Arminico Consort: rebranding their London youth music and choir school: AC Academy

AC Academy believes that every child in this country should be entitled to a first-class music education.

AC Academy runs a diverse range of music and arts education projects across the UK, working both inside and out of schools to reach 15,000 children per year.

AC Academy believes that through the work AC Academy do we offer children HOPE, HAPPINESS and EXCELLENCE, developing excellent singing and musical skills. Through our charitable status we appeal for funding to allow as much of what we do for children across the UK as free or as heavily subsidised as possible.

The AC Academy choirs that we run, create and continually develop are not auditioned. Music not only develops confidence and builds self-esteem; it has also been proven to aid concentration and behaviour.

Arminico Consort approached me a few weeks ago to see if I would consider doing this logo and brand identity redesign Pro bono with a super kind offer of partial payment.

To be perfectly honest, if you're going to do Pro bono, then you might as well do it properly, and completely for free. Doesn't feel at all right taking money from a Charity, even if offered.

The upside was that when I mentioned I'd not be happy taking any money, they countered with an offer of a half page advert for their next major concert with Russell Watson at the Symphony Hall, Birmingham: AC Academy Sing Symphony Hall  So that was a great outcome for both of us!

Here are a few photographs from last years event at the Royal Albert Hall:

AC Academy sing at the Royal Albert Hall

AC Academy sing at the Royal Albert Hall

AC Academy sing at the Royal Albert Hall

So here I am, frantically working on some logo designs ready to be screen-printed on 1000's of children's t-shirts for the AC Academy Sing Symphony Hall (which you can see how it looks from last years Royal Albert Hall performance, also with Russell Watson).

This relationship [with the Royal Albert Hall] culminated in a gala concert featuring 1300 children at the venue on 10 March, 2013. Russell Watson appeared alongside AC Academy singers from across the UK in the spectacular 'Around the World in 18 Tunes'. Watch highlights of this epic venture above, or on Youtube.

AC Academy Logo Design Concept

One of the early logo design concepts

Here's a little early taster of one of the very early logo design concepts for AC Academy. Due to cost, the white t-shirts are printed in greyscale, so the logo has to work well in full-colour, black/white, and greyscale, and be suitably bold and clean enough to be seen, and recognised, at some distance (as you can see from the photographs above).

The major challenge is attempting to visualise the idea of children and young adults singing as a group, whilst conveying the high quality and prestigious nature of the teaching and experience that the AC Academy provides children all over England.

To make things a little harder, there is no mention of what AC Academy is/does in the brand name, and tag-line, so in this case, the visual HAD to convey some connection to groups of children singing, whilst trying to avoid the usual cliches, stereotypes, and clip-art style illustration. Oh, and to also try and connect with the three word tag-line: hope, happiness, and excellence.

I think I have touched on hope and happiness through the colours, the jaunty angle of the heads, the open singing mouth, as well as each head being slightly bigger, smaller and different. The relatively clean and smart font choice helps to add the excellence aspect. Abstract meets stylish.

For the Font Watchers, I used Zona Pro ExtraBold for ac academy and Serifa Roman for the tag-line: hope, happiness and excellence.

AC-Academy Logo design Early Stage Concept

AC-Academy Logo design Early Stage Concept

dungeons and dragons ampersand_flat

It's kind of hard to actually look at anything other than this beautifully crafted Dungeons & Dragons Ampersand for the new logo redesign. Since when does an ampersand literally outshine, and out class, the rest of the logo?

There is almost a painful injustice to the somewhat insignificant sizing of the ampersand when you really absorb the new Dungeons & Dragons logo design, as a whole, in.

When you see this mighty ampersand enlarged to magnificent proportions, it's clear it is a masterpiece of type craftsmanship that deserves to hog the limelight. Yet, when placed in situ, between Dungeons and Dragons wording, you can't help but feel the ampersand deserves to break free of it's shackles.


New dungeons and dragons ampersand with chrome effect

New dungeons and dragons ampersand with chrome effect

New dungeons and dragons logo design

The actual Dungeons and Dragons wording is very tastefully done as well, but I just can't help but feel the ampersand is simply far too beautiful to be an 'and'. Who wouldn't die to have this ampersand as the dominant part of a logo design?

Wondering then if this ampersand will indeed be used solo? I'm thinking it would be a perfect fit for things like a new website favicon, a social media profile photo for Twitter etc? That would be a great used of such an awesome ampersand design, and would make me feel far happier.

As reported by BrandNew: Glitschka Studios designed the ampersand; the in-house design team at parent company, Hasbro, designed the rest of the wordmark and added the chrome effect.

Some of the ampersand variations that Glitschka Studios played with:

New dungeons and dragons  logo design ideas

I just had to follow up on post published by the Fast Company: For Twitter's 5th Birthday, New Grown-Up Logos where author Rick Barrack has decided that the Twitter logo needs a redesign.

I initially came across this post via my Google+ stream, and loved Patrick's comment, "Yup, Twitter definitely needs a new "Grown Up" logo because the current one is just not iconic enough."

In the usual case of concepts, open-letters and even major brand rebrands, such as The Gap, we are used to seeing designers come up with alternative ideas and suggestions.

I personally couldn't resist the opportunity to jump on the rebranding attempt with The Gap Logo Revisited, and I genuinely felt that it was "fair game" to put out my own interpretation of the rebrand. In this case The Gap HAD asked for designers to openly submit new designs so this was for the most part a free-for-all frenzy. I am just glad that they opted to revert back to their classic logo, but I did enjoy the opportunity to voice my own thoughts and ideas.

Sometimes these open-letters or "I can do better even though I wasn't asked" are only sparked by an individuals desire to be heard, and to have their internalizations externalised. The results can actually be fascinating, to view and read, even if it's mostly a pipe dream.

I have seen recent cases of these open-letters that have really piqued my interest, and have been impressed with the designers' take on the subject matter at hand. Other times, however, they don't offer anything worthwhile, don't improve upon the original and even make the designer look rather stupid.

Enter The Fast Company

This is where the Fast Company and Rick Barrack make a rather puzzling entrance. If you haven't scoped out the original article then do so now as you need to be aware of the reasons put forward.

Honestly? I am super baffled by this.

On one hand I can see the benefit of kicking up some controversy with the end goal of getting some epic page views, links and coverage which would of course include this post.

Nothing like kicking up a shit-storm for some good page views.

That I can understand.

What I can't understand, or quite make out, is if this is an actual joke by the Fast Company and Rick Barrack, or a genuine attempt to put forward a serious redesign proposition for the Twitter logo.

I have read, and reread this article just to make sure I have not missed anything that would suggest it's not to be taken seriously. For the life of me I can't find a thing. It really does look like a genuine proposition.

If it's a joke then the joke will be mostly on Rick as The Fast Company will already have about 20 posts in front of this by the end of the day, and will soon be a distant post in their archives. They will get a bit of a slating in the short terms as can be seen in the post comments but it will die out soon enough.

The same can't be said for Rick. This sort of thing clearly gets attention for which I am pretty sure the Fast Company were counting on, but not so sure it's the attention that Rick was expecting or counting on. I had to double check what you did for a living before my heart sunk even further.

This is the stuff that April Fools is made of.

One part of me actually considered, and wanted to believe for Rick's sake, that this post was scheduled for an April Fools but was mismanaged and a Scheduled Post was set-up with July 15th as the date.

So could this be an admin error?

If so you would think it would have been spotted by now, and discreetly pulled. So I think it's therefore safe to assume it was not a mismanaged Scheduled Post.

I don't think this was a joke as there really is not indication to suggest it is. The post is written with reasonably serious intent, and you are left with the idea that Rick truly would, and is, staking is a portion of his reputation on his idea of what the Twitter logo should now look like.

And here it is.

The Twitter Logo Redesigned

I don't agree with this assumption that the Twitter logo needs to grow up. I love the Twitter logo especially since they tweaked it a short while back. It's utterly iconic and works perfectly in pretty much every scenario and location possible from the: favicon, website header and applications icons etc.

I'll be blunt.

Rick's take on what the new Twitter logo should look like scares the crap out of me. It's just wrong.

Here's another.

Gradients? A speech bubble? An i morphed into the w? Please tell me this IS a joke? I would rather end up with egg on MY face if someone can point out I have totally missed the point of his post.

And to remind you of the current "official" logo just incase you're eyes are now bleeding.

I love this passage, "So it's way past the time for you to grow up as a brand. In other words, how about presenting a more appropriate image that reflects your current status? The following are just a few suggestions of how we think you should toast your fifth year as a media heavy."

So these two examples of Twitter's new logo present "a more appropriate image that reflects your current status?" If Twitter rebranded with any of these designs I would laugh till I died, and then I am pretty sure The Devil would take pity on me.

So there we have it.

If anyone chooses to practice this type of conceptualising, especially when it wasn't needed or asked for, then I think it is fair enough to say you should be able to take the flak if people, like myself, don't agree. I myself received flak for my thoughts on what The Gap logo could look like but I still stand behind the logic, and the design itself. It was based on nothing but my own views on The Gap and how I see them as a brand.

So I have now given a bit more life to Rick's post, sent a few more visitors towards the Fast Company and done my bit for their daily article page views. I hope that at some point Rick can take time to address some of the comments on his post, and show us how strongly he sits behind the Twitter logo redesigns.

I could carry on with this assassination but to be honest I just feel for the guy. This is not something you put your name to, a mainstream website, unless you enjoy playing dodgeball with career suicide.