Established in 1913 -- originally as United States Football Association and later as United States Soccer Football Association -- the United States Soccer Federation (U.S. Soccer for short) is the governing body of soccer in all its forms in the United States. Headquartered in Chicago, IL, it manages the men's and women's national soccer teams that represent the U.S. at the World Cup and other tournaments as well as the Olympics and Paralympics. U.S. Soccer oversees youth development leagues, operates the National Training Center at StubHub Center in Carson, CA, sanctions referees, and pretty much helps fuel the increasing love of soccer in the U.S.. Yesterday, the organization introduced a new logo designed by Nike and a new proprietary type family by Type Supply.
The process of the rebrand began in earnest about two years ago with U.S. Soccer providing input and insight to the design team at Nike. The collaborative effort went through hundreds of different iterations before arriving on a look that is modern, aggressive, youthful and timeless. The unveiling of the updated crest aligns the visual identity of the Federation with its position as a leader in sport. It represents limitless possibilities for what soccer is today and will become in America.
This design embodies the spirit of U.S. Soccer, but it also transcends our teams and the game. It's uniquely and unmistakably American.
[…] Notably, the new identity no longer features stars or a ball. In soccer tradition, stars are placed above the logo to represent World Cup victories. The WNT crest will prominently feature the three stars earned in 1991, 1999 and most recently, the historic 2015 victory.
[…]The new crest also does not include the soccer ball that has been featured in the past two iterations.
The old logo, designed in 1995, was mostly bad but nothing offensive in execution. It was regularly criticized for the stripes being blue instead of red as in the American flag but I find the stars more annoying than that detail as they look like metal stars you buy at antique stores. The main problem with the logo was that every element had its own aesthetic and the only thing that kept it together was literally being inside a crest shape.
The new logo is much simpler and efficient, dropping the stars and the soccer ball while doubling down on the U.S.A.-ness of it. The stripes have been corrected to be red and white and include all 13 from the flag while the "USA" lettering fits snuggly in the straightforward crest shape. There are no unnecessary curves to the crest, it has a good proportion, and it looks confident. The lettering is bold, striking, and mostly well executed... as much as I don't like half rounded corners on letters, the top corner of the right stem of the "U" should have been rounded to mirror that of the "A", as everything else is symmetric. Nonetheless, it's a strong evolution and, probably more important than the logo representing soccer, it represents the U.S. and the merchandise has the potential to sell well beyond soccer fans. Heck, it's better than the official Brand USA logo.
To introduce the new logo, U.S. Soccer sent out 10,000 packages with a VR device and scarf with the goal of lighting social media on fire. I don't follow soccer on social media so I can't tell if it worked but from looking at the Instagram accounts of men's and women's national teams it wasn't too hot. ESPN has collected some of them and The New York Times has a good story on the unveiling approach that cost in the "seven figures".
In addition, U.S. Soccer unveils its official font, 90Minutes, a unique custom look designed by renowned typeface designer Tal Leming to complement the lettermarks used in the crest and allow for the integration of text with the crest.
The identity comes with a new type family by Tal Leming of Type Supply — he goes into every detail here — and the best thing about it it's that it's not a geometric sans! Goool! U.S. Soccer, as Tal explains, had been using his type family, United, to good effect so switching to something else was almost as big a deal as changing the logo. The new type family was based on a first headline font designed by Nike, which was on the awful side, with very wonky construction and poorly resolved structure. I'm not a huge fan of the aesthetic of the new type family. The half rounded corners still bug me but it's undeniably a well thought-out and very well developed type system. The numerals are pretty cool and will be one of the most visible elements as they will appear on jerseys. The font lacks the FORCE attitude of United but it has a more sophisticated feel that is fitting for the increased reputation of the national teams.
Overall, logo looks good, type looks good, website looks good. Nothing earth-shattering but given how easily things can go South in large redesigns this held up well in what I'm sure was a grueling approval and consensus process.
Hovertext: Alternate method: Convert humans to hydrogen, float to space, reassemble.
Established in 2014, Fort Point Beer is a craft brewery in San Francisco, CA. Brewing four core beers, Fort Point also offers seasonals and one-offs that were, until now, only available in bars and restaurants. To broaden their reach and bring their beers to the public, the brewer has launched a line of 12 oz cans and a new identity designed by local firm Manual.
The brewery is situated in a historic Presidio building that was formerly used as an Army motor pool. Their iconic location--close to both the Golden Gate Bridge and the Fort Point National Historic Site--provided inspiration for Manual to create the modular, illustrative brand identity that went beyond just a logo, and leveraged recognizable architectural elements of the bridge and the historic site-- arches and trestles--as its backbone.
On its own, the logo is literally only a small part of the puzzle, serving as the anchor upon which all the rest of the elements are built on. As such, it handles its weight just fine through a chunky serif that contrasts nicely against the thin lines in the arch graphic that surrounds it. As one of the few typographic elements in the packaging, the logo stands out quite well and complements the line-art approach.
[We] developed the grid-based graphic system into a flexible, modular and scalable set of designs that incorporate playful illustrations of San Francisco culture and charm. Sutro Tower, the Dutch Windmill in Golden Gate Park, and a camper van for the Westfalia beer variety, champion the spirit of San Francisco. Elements of the city and Bay Area create a unique and authentic sense of place, while helping establish Fort Point Beer Co. as the new wave of San Francisco-based brewing.
The distinct color palettes and bold lines of the designs were carefully considered and intentional. We selected color combinations that would be a deliberate departure from more typical beer packaging, with the intention of cutting through clutter on a shelf or aisle. The result is a set of designs that look elegant, refined and still playful. A visual system that's matching in quality with the beer it contains.
Dense with illustrations, the cans are absolutely stunning. The muted color palette printed on the metal substrate creates a lovely-looking set of beers. I like how the bottom half of the illustrations is consistent while the top half changes to include different designs, creating a literal landscape of San Francisco.
Everything else about the packaging system is, effectively, on point. The cartons, the cases, the tap handles… just perfect. The work certainly feels like it belongs in, and is playing within, the genre of hip craft breweries with minimal and sharp-looking graphics but it's so well executed and expanded across applications that it stands out as best in class.
Hovertext: PS: Make America Great Again
Hovertext: With apologies to anyone of good taste.
The Deadspin staff picked their favorite Vines from 2015, and you won’t be surprised to learn that many of them include maniacal dogs. Please enjoy.
It’s strange to edit a feminist website when almost nothing offends you, because the feminist website is traditionally imagined to run on offense.
Deadspin is pleased to announce our 2015 Bear of the Year. After a great deal of consideration and deliberation, we arrived at a clear choice: Extra-Cool Polar Bear Who Discovered Many Ways To Enjoy His Items.