Our New Logo: Breaking out of a tablet mindset

This semester sees the launch of our exciting new visual identity for the Ball State Digital Publishing Studio. Our student design team has spent the last months re-thinking the identity of the studio. When the studio first opened in 2012, we used the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite to create stunning tablet applications. From our small beginnings, we have evolved with our clients as well as our audience. We no longer simply create tablet apps. We work with clients to create content for a specific audience regardless of platform. This highlights our studio’s commitment to the overall user experience of our products.

olddpslogo

Our old logo, which we used from approximately 2012 to this semester, Spring 2016.

We felt our old logo did not appropriately convey the current work of the studio. The original logo was platform-focused and showcased an iPad. When we began the redesign process we knew the logo needed to show an experience rather than a specific platform, especially since we now design user experiences for our clients across platforms (for example, we created a website, mobile and tablet apps and logos for one of our educational clients).

Our first iterations of new logos were based off a fingerprint design. Our apps live on touchscreens and our focus is on creating engaging content – we wanted to show that our apps are highly touchable and that they invite interaction. 

FingerprintRedesign

Fingerprints were intended to convey the interactive nature of our client work.

This concept was based on the user-interaction with the content; however, the team wanted to refine the logo beyond its basic concept. This new design was still too literal, and relied too much on the hardware of a touchscreen device and not enough on the concept of engaging content and unified user experience.

ConcentricCircles

Concentric circles were intended to replace the fingerprints as a symbol for touch.

To simplify the finger print design, the team created a three-ringed circle. The center ring is cardinal red, representing Ball State University. The two remaining rings are two darker shades. By slightly adjusting the color of each ring, the logo conveys depth, change and hopefully interaction.  While this was a step in a positive direction, the logo reminded the team of a shooting target, rather than a design studio driven by an intense focus on user experience.

From here the team toyed with dividing the circle. After many iterations we finally arrived at a refined, finished design. By slightly breaking each ring into different sections, the logo now elicits the experience of touch. The maze-like image represents our thought process when designing content for our specific audience and also demonstrates experience of our audience discovering the fantastic content we provide them.

We experimented with breaking the rings and matching typefaces to the design.

We experimented with breaking the rings and matching typefaces to the design.

As the logo took shape, our designers also spent a lot of time finding a typeface to complement the design. The typeface needed to be bold but not overpowering, and it needed to still have a modern, tech development feel. After testing many different sans-serif typefaces, we finally decided on one that best married the type and icon of our new visual identity:

Our final design.

Our final design.

Unlike our old, platform-centric iPad logo, we hope our new logo demonstrates our forward-thinking commitment to engaging, multi-faceted content for years to come.

  • Hannah D.