Monday, August 8, 2016

Rio Olympics 2016 logo and font

The Rio logo depicts an able bodied Olympic athlete in association with Special Olympic athletes. The Yellow figure has two arms and two legs while the blue figure and green figure each have one leg.

I lied again. Please forgive me.

The logo was worked out with 3D modeling. The inspiration is from the curved shapes of the mountains surrounding the city. The original idea was conceived as 3-D while most of its use would be graphic representation. Once the shape was worked out as a flat shape the creator returned to 3D modeling to see how the logo would look in 3D then other possibilities for applications were discovered. 

This is what the article says. It's Brazilian, it doesn't have to make sense.  

The idea of infinity took hold, a good one Frederico Gelli thought, a strong one because he says the symbol is found in caves a million years ago (!) and it has good meaning in all cultures.

That must have been Homo ergaster contemplating infinity.

Sketch graphics are provided with the article presumably showing the design evolution. Upon inspection they show variations on a swirling infinity-like design ranging from peaks and valleys with pools to rings made of stylized human forms. 

Font vs. typeface. 

A typeface is a family of fonts. Within a typeface will be fonts of various types and weights such as bold, semi-bold, italic, light, and condensed, each variation its own font. 

This is how artists talk:
We had a strong logo symbol, so we decided to make the logotype really clean without personality to create a stage for the symbol. 
The logo was the protagonist and the type set it up to be the star. But the feedback from the Olympic design committee was for our logotype to have the same DNA as the logo. So we hired an expert typographer to join our team and we drew 150 different logotypes on paper to see if we could find one that had the same DNA of the symbol — the curves, the nature, the drawing of the logotypes.
This is Fabio Maag, a British typeface designer,
Our prompt was that the font had to be an exact replica of the letters in the logo.
(?) Apparently the letters R, I, O are imagined in the logo.

The company, Dalton Maag, assigned a 6-member team to use R, I, O, along with the figures 2, 0, 1, 6, as a guide.  N is offered by wave-like curves. From those letters and figures the rest of the alphabet and characters were developed, nearly 500 in total.

Logotype vs font.

According to Maag, the letter combination is set in logotypes while fonts must work well next to any other and match. In the logotype some characters are fluid like R and 2 while 1 is straight and o is on a seep angle. Finding the balance that works harmoniously is the biggest challenge.

They have the R, I, and O, and want the other letters to look like them but cannot use them because they do not connect with all others.

The team used the words "passion" and "transformation" (in Portuguese) to see how their letters connect.
Then, on the 24th concept, the hero concept, we used the word ‘transformation,’ [Transformação] because it is a triple ligature of ‘s,’ ‘f’ and ‘o,’ which plays off the ‘1’ and ‘6’ of the Rio 2016.”
24 tries. This reaffirms what they say about everything except skydiving. Here he uses ligature to mean the way letters connect to each other. Egyptology uses the term ligature to mean symbols crammed together the way we do in English with, say, the word health-care evolving over time to a new word healthcare, the way Germans do so well. When I check, though, I'm given two letters crammed together, not joined words.

More words and more pictures on the challenges facing typeface designers, and the challenge of explaining all that, at


Adamsunderground said...

Someone snuck in some crotchless panties into the graphic design and nobody noticed.

Lem said...

My mind didn't go to Rio when I saw that logo the first time. It went to soccer first and then to Rio.

AprilApple said...

It looks like a water-bottle holder or a rigid jock strap.

Lem said...

A Disney horse's saddle maybe. Something out of Toy Story.

Lem said...

A hollowed out Firefox logo.

Adamsunderground said...

It represents man's inhumanity to mandingo

Lem said...

Tom Brady's wedding ring.

Chip Ahoy said...

How rude. This is serious! *flounces*

AprilApple said...

Looks like something functional attached to my bicycle.

Lem said...

Oh I get it. It's three peoples stretched out arms.

Like a we are the world type deal.

Lem said...

I had to read some of it to get it.

Too cerebral for me.

ndspinelli said...

Rice Bowls.

edutcher said...

Still trying to figure it out, but it does look like something in second semester biology.

Lem said...

It becomes more obvious when you these shots...



edutcher said...

Nah, doesn't look a bit like a cable car.

Mumpsimus said...

The logo is pretty pointless as a logo. It doesn't suggest or allude to athletics, or the Olympics, or Rio, or Brazil, or anything else pertinent.

Nice font, though.

rhhardin said...

PV8ADI in Brazil is operating as ZW8I, an oddball call sign, for the olympics, causing a ham pile-up on 40m trying to work the same guy they could talk to any night easily.

It had to be him because he uses the signature 50wpm sending of the default signal report 5nn (meaning 599). Everybody's 599.

He isn't set up to deal with pile-ups, though. You have to wait for the pile-up to peter out before you can hear him again. Pros tell you to respond "up 1" so that you're not calling on the same frequency that he's transmitting on.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

The logo looks like the yellow guy is trying to flick and flip some gross sticky gunk off of his hands. Like a comic book scenario of the monsters who have risen from the sludge. ICK ICK ICK...... Spinning and flicking. Get this crap off of me!!!!!

The Sludge!!!!!

Leland said...

It looks like a butt plug. Once you see it, you won't unsee it.