27 June 2010

[logo] The Portland Timbers Logo System - The Full Monty Debuts

The system has debuted.

On Friday, 25 June 2010, the Portland Timbers organization rolled out the complete logo and identity system. The whole system consists of four parts in toto, called the primary, secondary, and tertiary crests, along with the wordmark and a baseball-logo-like ligature. Credit the Timbers for the following, in order:

1. The Primary Crest. Looks almost identical to the logo debuted earlier, but with simpler lines, less fiddly stuff, and relieved of all the yellow high-lights, looks a lot less cartoony, a lot more down-to-earth. Very much an improvement over the original.

2. The Secondary Crest. Remove the words crossing the symbol and allow the circle to trim the chevrons. Of the whole system, this looks the most like the old crest

3. The Tertiary Crest. Remove all but the axe, and you get something which reminds me of the 70s era AT&T logo:

4. The Ligature. The ligature mark ... a ligature being a word that describes what happens when you tie two letterforms together ... combines a stylized letter "P" with the axe in a way which not only shows off the signature axe but also suggests the letters "PT", and whose overall effect reminds me of baseball and hockey team logos:

And rounding this off is the Wordmark,  which, simply put, is the "PORTLAND TIMBERS" lifted from the primary crest and used on its own.

Whatever anyone might think of the new logo, I must admit, it's kind of grown on me. If I can be so bold as to say that, as far as logo and identity systems go, it's a pretty solid group of symbols, all of which hand off to each other with a nicely-done visual logic.

I know that a great many Timbers supporters are unhappy with the primary crest, and I'm not about to tell anyone else how to feel about it. However, in my view, it updates the whole thing very aptly while - and I imagine that I might not get a great deal of agreement here - pays proper homage to the image's and the franchise's past.

The new marks have a visual logic, a clean and modern sense of style, a sensitivity to what amounts to local tradition, and a clear link with the past (deftly done by making the axe the centerpiece of the circular design).

According to the Timbers press release, some of this was influenced by fan input. I'm guessing, based on what I've seen on that message board, the secondary crest was very much influenced by Timbers Army input. The primary crest is improved - there seems to be a lack of yellow highlights and some of the more "fiddly-bits" seem to be gone, and playing that down does the mark a great deal of good. Tighter and cleaner is the way to go.

I don't know about other Timbers fans, or if they think this is that much of an improvement, but it's a system of marks I can certainly get behind.

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Powered by ScribeFire.

No comments: