Friction Factory Logo

14 Responses

  1. Graham Smith Graham Smith

    Been all over the place with this one. Looked at so many variations and you know what, reverting back to one of the first mock-up's I did. After seeing the different ideas, my instinct is that this style say's it all.

    Need to stress this is for an indoor climbing center, not outside in the raw elements on real rocks. The design of the logo takes this into account thru the general style. It will appear a little more 'clean' than if it were exterior climbing.

    As I mentioned earlier, this logo needs to be seen/viewed/imagined in context of a climber looking for somewhere to climb and not a garage selling wrenches.

    It's not too realistic, it's not too obvious, it has a person climbing/pulling themselves up, it has the side profile of a hand feeding a rope, it has the subtle reference to strength/grip/wrench through the slight angular shape of the torso.

    The type is new and I feel much more intune with the whole thing. I have pivoted the hips suggesting free air motion and swinging which gives that feeling of the 'freedom of climbing'.

    The top half can be split and used as small independent icon for the website as well as being split into numerous highlight colours.

    It's not totally there, but this is the idea I am suggestion to the client we focus on perfecting.

    over 3 years ago

  2. Adam Campbell Adam Campbell

    Graham, I really dig this one. I think the climber looks good, and will be even greater in context. I like what you said about being able to split it up too.

    I think the only thing for me is the type - maybe heading back to something a little more squared off. I like how that played with the wrench icon. But either way, this looks great.

    over 3 years ago

  3. Mike Puglielli Mike Puglielli

    Hey Graham,

    I have been following your progress on this logo for some time now and unfortunately the logo confuses me a bit. If it wasn't for initially reading about what the company does; I would think it's a competitor for GM's Goodwrench. I dont think its a bad logo, but I don't get the idea of indoor climbing due in large part that I continue to see a wrench, perhaps this is just my own damn fault.

    I think it would be helpful to sit on this logo and pursue some other ideas and come back to this and see how strongly you feel about it then. What are some of the things that make indoor climbing intense or emotional? What are other iconic ideas or imagery of climbing? The logo does not feel confident in itself, and maybe you don't either considering the many revisions around this idea. Admittedly, this is a tough logo project.

    Last thing to mention, the font could be throwing me off. It does seem a bit disjointed and much like what Adam said, maybe some more squared type could really seal this deal. Keep at it, looking forward to see what you finish with during this process.

    over 3 years ago

  4. Graham Smith Graham Smith

    Mike : I am actually very confident with this, it was one of the first concepts I did but allowed myself to get too distracted by comments. Which has all been useful in the end, as have explored many options, too many to list on Dribbble.

    As I mentioned previously, this logo has been taken out of context and viewed in a way that it will not be viewed. One needs to view this through the eyes of a climber, who has climbing on their mind. I know of many brands where the visual image is not actually immediately relevant, in fact leading you somewhere else, until you realise the connection and meaning.

    If I had a tag line on it saying 'Indoor Climbing', pretty sure one would get the connection.

    Any disjointedness will 'hopefully' be ironed out in the final round of perfecting tweaks. :0

    Still looking at type and overall positioning and angle of the climber so that's still a consideration. :)

    over 3 years ago

  5. oVan oVan

    I don't see the hand+rope without your info, but that's ok. Definitely dig the climber in this version - really good, an improvement over your last iteration. Not too sure about the font, it's nice but perhaps there are better matches indeed.

    over 3 years ago

  6. Mike Puglielli Mike Puglielli

    @Graham Totally hear ya in context. That was something I was certainly thinking that it would be more effective in the appropriate atmosphere and probably pulls together more on their website, etc; which makes logo presentation difficult. I agree with oVan in that it is certainly the most effective iteration and the orange gives way to the human element (as per your intention I'm sure).

    I also agree with your comment about there being a connection between the logo and its representation and not being instantly or immediately relevant and I advocate that sophistication in logos.

    Ok, good pitch. :) Looking forward to the context and final polish phases.


    over 3 years ago

  7. Luke Ritchie Luke Ritchie

    @Graham I understand this mite look good in context..but the true strength of a logo is to be recognized out of context.I tend to agree with @Mike on this one. I still think the overall message is being mis-interpreted because the "vibe" of the logo is communicated through the human climbing figure..which i still think is too angled/obscure..and far too similar to a wrench/spanner.maybe just the legs need to look different..
    Maybe try emulate some kind of climbing grip quality?

    anyway..just my thoughts.

    over 3 years ago

  8. Anthony Lane Anthony Lane

    The intended audience is for seasoned climbers is it not? That's who needs to "get it."

    I can't help but feel the type is lacking. This seems like a perfect opportunity for a really aggressive, sporty looking hand drawn font, something more angular that has a little more weight to it. A solid, firm base for the climber hold onto.


    over 3 years ago

  9. Graham Smith Graham Smith

    Luke/Anthony : The handwritten font is just not workable. The brief has meant looking at many other climbing logos, and many are just obvious climber dudes in a nasty Publisher clip art way.

    I have looked at handwritten fonts, grunge fonts, aged and distressed fonts and they all just seem to make it look 'cheap' and 'tacky'. The client wants to break out of the expected and present a cleaner identity, but that still has the relevant associations, without playing into the obvious or expected.

    I do hear you, I really do... but without sharing the entire brief and obviously all the details I am privvy too, it's hard to really explain the 'whole context' thing.

    The climber style I have personalised, made realisitc, angled and not angled, iconic and natural in feel, but each one, in context of the brief, did not fit.

    I think when you read a more detailed logo process explanation it will make more sense.

    I do believe this logo works on its on, even without context. That much I feel very strongly about. It comes down again to a design being too obvious or too expected, so throwing in a minor curveball so that when you do 'get it' you get it. And for the majority, this design is got. :)

    But this is what I find valuable on Dribbble, all comments give one pause for thought and to re evaluate. Importantly, the client has pushed for this direction after seeing all the variations.

    Please also bear in mind this is not a 'completed' design, it's the intended style of design, so with the final tweaks I hope to address some of the issues being mentioned.

    over 3 years ago

  10. Graham Smith Graham Smith

    The whole 'spanner/wrench' thing I feel is being focused on too much. Take a previous comment about the similarities of this with the Moveable Type logo. This is definitely a wrench, yet it works in context of the name and the meaning. There is an element of randomness about it, I mean, what has a wrench got to do with a blogging platform, but you make the visual and name connection work.

    So people see a wrench first with the above, that is quite fine. It's an intended link from the outset of the design, its impossible to ensure everyone conjours up the same first image, so you do your best to work a logo so that 'majority' see it or 'will see it'. Im in that camp rather than the 'scream in your face obvious' and I like a logo to have a little quirkiness about it.

    Need to stress this is for an indoor climbing center, not outside in the raw elements on real rocks. The design of the logo takes this into account thru the general style.
    Anything too perfect defeats the object of this brief.

    over 3 years ago

  11. Anthony Lane Anthony Lane

    Graham, I never said anything about a "handwritten or grungy" font. I meant, hand crafted, as in custom, not a scribbley hand drawn script.

    over 3 years ago

  12. Graham Smith Graham Smith

    Anthony : Ok, I understand. Thing is, crafting a new font is not something I am particular experienced with. It's such a fine art in itself, creating a number of matching glyph's.

    I have done it for short worded brands, but I don't feel confident enough to start creating custom lettering on a larger scale, not to mention the enourmous time sink it is to do it properly.

    My hat goes off to proper font and type designers, it's a wicked skill.


    over 3 years ago

  13. Mike Puglielli Mike Puglielli

    Dude, Cheers on that Graham. So true. Great font design is a spec and talent in of itself.

    over 3 years ago

  14. 99% there now. Need to sit on this now for a few days, come back and make those last detail tweaks, checking kerning, proportions etc.

    *Since posting this, I have updated the font style, both words now the same weight. Looksie

    So what do we have
    New squarer font, with a little bit more character. But still has some nice curves to match the person.

    Some colour options
    Also made the person less angular/wrench like, so more focus on curves than angles, more so on the inside of the arms. The curves of the font, in most parts, match the curves on the person.

    Made a few tweaks to the person to make it looking slightly more dynamic, more like it's free floating in mid-air, which is a nice association to have with climbing, the space under the wording creates this impression of being up high, hauling oneself up to the top.

    Changed the angle of the person so that the left arm runs up along the 'i', making it feel more part of the wording. I have also pivoted the legs so that there is a wider gap between torso to the right, to emphasis this reaching/grasping motion. The feeling is more of a jump (dyno'd) rather than a regular hauling upwards. Has a lot more motion.

    over 3 years ago

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