True Caliber FilmWorks

tinch's picture

Hey guys,

I'm new to the board and this is my first post. I've read through quite a lot of these critiques and value your suggestions. I am starting my own film/commercial company and have had the name True Caliber for several years. I am just now hunkering down and trying to devise a logo. Here is my newest design, number 43,902:

True Cal Red

No but seriously I have done logos for other companies, but can't seem to crack my own. Your feedback is greatly welcome.

-Erik Tinch

drewheffron's picture

Hey Roger, welcome to typophile!

This is a very interesting mark you having going. Good idea with the 't' 'c' lig. Should the red circle be a bit smaller? Or perhaps the glyph needs to be wider? It seems to me that there is too much red space on either side.
As for true caliber, maybe try another typeface? I'd like to see what everyone else thinks about that.

As for the positioning of everything, the mark may work better beside true caliber, rather than being centered on top.

I like how the red circle is a bullet hole, or maybe the back of a bullet. Perhaps you could develop on that more, by adding a ring around the edge or something?

Just some thoughts

Drew

squeeze's picture

I love the type. I don't like the current relationship between the mark and logotype (i.e. size, positioning, etc.). If you are, in fact, trying to portray some kind of bullet hole as Drew suggested, then maybe you can simply position a red circle behind the "t" and have some skattered red circles resembling bullet spray

tinch's picture

Thanks for all your feedback thus far. I'm actually trying to shy away from the whole gun connotation. I am using the word caliber for it's meaning of quality, thus "true quality". I have tried different scenarios with guns or gun imagery, but it's not the type of image I want to portray with the company. I want something along the lines of like the Psyop logo (www.psyop.tv) or Res (www.res.com) Somethign that represents cutting-edge, but also can be a timeless mark if the company survives that long.

Erik

tinch's picture

Here's another design I futzed with:

True Caliber logo 2004

squeeze's picture

I can't stress how much stronger your first concept is compared to these.

Since this is a production company, some subtle animation would be appropriate. The logotype (from your first posting) lends well to animating appearing/disappearing pieces of type. One method might be to start with a solid block and tear out chunks to reveal the letterforms, then randomly have pieces/chunks of the block reappear, then disappear again, and so on (i.e. the counter of the "e's", the bowl of the "b", the chisel of the "t" arm, etc.)

Dan Weaver's picture

The first attempt looks alot like many corporate logos, I kind of like the second attempt you could show the black letter T first and then bring in the True Caliber. I think the type for True Caliber should be worked on (yawn) also don't be mostest about your business bump up Filmworks (its what you do)

tinch's picture

Scott:

I agree with you on the type. Here I've kept the text but worked up a variant of the logo. In my opinion the most important element to me is the logo mark itself. Once that's engrained in people's heads that's all I would have to show. Plus I like the challenge of distilling a company's character into a single icon. It's bold and instant.
True Cal logo 3

Daniel:

Yeah I want to have some pizzazz but at the same time have a sense of stability and timelessness. I'm a big fan of Rand's and a lot of my work involves making things simple. Have any suggestions for fonts for the main text?

kakaze's picture

Oh...that calligraphic logogramme works much better in the square, I think, than the circle. Plus it adds a nice juxtaposition to the "high tech" text used for the "true calibre" name.

I really like the last one with the logogramme centred between true and calibre.

tinch's picture

Here's two other versions with the logo treated differently:

True Cal logo 4

squeeze's picture

Roger:

That is very interesting

kakaze's picture

The more freeform one works better than the newest one, I think, Roger.

You've got this main font that's very modern and sharp, and the flowy logogramme is a great contrast to it. Plus, having it oversized like it is in the square creates some interesting shapes. I truthfully don't think it works as well in the circle.

tinch's picture

Chris:

Are you sure the one you like doesn't have too much of the so called "swoosh" factor? Thats my only problem with it. It almost looks too trendy. My newest revision has a edge to it, but especially an attitude.

kakaze's picture

I don't know about the "swoosh" factor

tinch's picture

Here's another spec with several variations. On this one I thought outside the box, figuratively and literally speaking :-)

Yet another True Caliber spec

golfomat's picture

Hi Roger!

I like one of your suggestions above very much. The one with the red circle with calligraphy in it that stands between true and caliber (like Chris Anemone).

I'm with Scott who mentionened to show some subtle animation. And I think this one would at first follow this criteria. For me the T in the Circle also resembles the smoke that comes out of gun. But I'm sure that can be visualized even more obvious while keeping the "T".

Servus

Dominik

golfomat's picture

Hi Roger again.

Didn't recognize you want to stay away from the gun thing. I've read your your post above after posting mine.

Servus

Dominik

Dan Weaver's picture

Roger I'm also liking the version with the red circle it has a nice contrast to the hard angular typeface on either side of it.

squeeze's picture

I kind of like the direction of your last posting, particularly concepts 3 and 4. Try using the caligraphic "T" as the "T" in true, by positing "rue" in reverse from the center. You may need to introduce some new element to balance it

setmajer's picture

Hi Roger,

I'm new here as well, so please forgive me if my insights aren't so insightful. I'm learning too (albeit slowly ;-).

I'm agreeing with Daniel, Dominik and Scott: the red circle version is the strongest. I wouldn't sweat the swoosh thing. There are some swooshy shapes, but none is individually a dominant element, and the feel isn't that arcy, swooshy curve. It's more of a vortex feel, drawing the eye into the center of the logo. The square version of same is my second-favorite, though I like it more each time I look. Perhaps try using a similar but less-compressed face for the 'true caliber' to develop more horizontal motion, like the lig is a point on a timeline.

The newer versions--the solid black type-only--don't do so much for me. The gothic 'TC' ligature reads as a 'T' to my eye, and there's too much whitespace between it and the 'aliber'; looks like a hole. Where the red circle/square draws the eye into the ligature itself, the later versions draw the eye into a hole. The first is better in that respect, but there the lig feels too heavy. Maybe slim/reduce the back side of the 'T'? Or use a contrasting color for the interior stroke?

Also, you might try splitting up the 'ib' ligature. Part of the strength of that face is the verticality, and connecting the dot on the 'i' and the serif of the 'b' interrupts a particularly strong vertical and, to my eye, disturbs the rhythm of the face.

Last, I think you're going to get 'gun' inferences from almost anything with your name. 'Caliber' is just very closely associated with firearms.

shreyas's picture

What if you were to extend the red circle out a little, make it just a hair more elliptical? The waist looks a little pinched to me; that might help make it feel more generous.

On the i, I tend to agree with Chris - it occurred to me that you have a great opportunity there to use a right-triangle shape for the dot and reinforce your type's feel in what's right now not the most interesting glyph. The t is excellent; all of "true" has a great diagonal force that "caliber" doesn't, maybe because you have two strongly vertical glyphs interrupting the diagonal movement.

beejay's picture

fwiw, s'more comments...

I like how the blackletter T can also be read
as a C.

My favorite so far is the version with the red circle in the center...Dec. 2, 2:45 post.

I don't like the angled cutout on the t in true.


bj

tinch's picture

You guys are going to hate me, but I've fallen in love with my newest version, which I call the "Swing C":

swingc2

Now I agree with you guys about the red circle version and although aesthetically it does flow a little better it just didn't represent the company truthfully. To me it looks like a logo for some homogenized software company. Sometimes it's not about whther looks good, but whether it feels good. This could work for my film company if I wanted to be a little more freewheeling with the stories I want to tell, but I definately want to make hard-hitting and challenging movies. Think of flicks like Traffic, Fight Club, Seven or the commercial work by Chris Cunningham and Spike Jonze. Irreverant, experimental, but always, always unpredictable.

So have I got you guys sold? How could I improve on this one? I did take into account your input on the 'i' so I stuck a dot right back in there. As far as the negative space in the middle of the ligature I like the fact it draws your eye to the middle and from there you discover the rest of the logo. I definately didn't want to stuff up the logo anymore then it had to be.

tinch

beejay's picture

Roger, here are some quick comments ...


* The notch on the t seems like an aberration
because it's not repeated anywhere else.

* The two (r)s suffer from no overhang I think.

* the first r/u combination and the final e/r
combination

squeeze's picture

I like the change to "FILMS", it works better with the desired communication you have described on your latest posting.

I have an opposite perspective of your concept comparisons. I believe your last concept is more pleasing aesthetically than the red circle concept, but it is more difficult to read. I want to use the caligraphic "T" as a capital letter for the word "Ccaliber/Tcaliber". The space between the "T" and "c" helps a little, but I'm still struggling with its readability.

After reading your intended message I think the smoking gun concept would be very appropriate

tinch's picture

BJ,

I made some changes based on your remarks.
swingc3
However I'm not too sure what do with the "e-t ligature" connection. I'm liking how it is a little more streamlined now and hopefully read your input correctly. Thanks!

Roger

tinch's picture

Scott,

I totally agree with the difficulty in designing one's own logo. It took me over 6 months to come up with my other logo, vdefilms.com, and that was the first design I had mocked up! Anyhow I appreciate your feedback and like the gun imagery you added to the logo. I do however want to stay away from anything that shows guns specifically. I'm looking for a mark that can stand on it's own and hopefully one day become synonymous with great films. Also my newest revision reflects the highly stylized and serious tone most of my films portray. As well as melding the new (the true aliber type representing digital filmmaking) with the old (the Old English styled TC that represents a strong foundation in classic storytelling).

tinch

squeeze's picture

Sounds great

tinch's picture

Scott,

I like what you did with taking out the 'c' and pulling the 'aliber' in closer. It gets rid of the negative hole as well as make the logo flow better. I did originally try lining true up a little higher to make it look stepped, but it just looked too severe and disjoined. I like the horizontal composition with this swirling symbol in the midlle that breaks free from it.

tinch

setmajer's picture

I'm liking Scott's solution to the 'aliber' as well, and I agree with him regarding the notch on the first 't'.

I'll also second the concerns about the e-t join. I'm not sold on the 't/c'-'a' join--though that's better than the other. Maybe try reworking the t-c lig to avoid joins with either word? Or maybe just flatten both curves a touch so they don't join at all?

I also agree with you regarding the horizontal composition. Maybe you could dodge the joins and strengthen the horizontal in one swoop by reducing the x-height a touch?

Regardless, I still find the 'lib' spacing a teensy bit awkward in Scott's version. I definitely like the independent dot on the 'i', tho. Maybe BJ is onto something with a triangle for the dot of the 'i'? Also, rather than reversing the serif on the 'l' I might try ditching it entirely--or maybe that's an opportunity to reuse the notch from the 't'?

Finally, I think the 'er' join is a bit awkward with the tail (or whatever the correct term is) on the 'e' sticking up like that. Maybe eliminate it?

All niggles and dodgy advice aside, it really is coming together nicely.

jcroft's picture

This is my first post here at Typophile, but I've beeen reading for some time. So, first time, long time...all that.

Anyway...Roger...I LOVE this concept. I don't think I'm quite ready to make any great suggestions, but if you don't mind me asking, what typefaces did you start with on this? I really like the style of both the blackletter and the main text and would love to know what fonts you used.

Thanks in advance,

Jeff

tinch's picture

Based on your recent feedback here is the newest incarnation:

tc2004

I tried solving the 'ligature-text' connection by using the tails as positive reinforcements for the negative slices in the 'e counter' and 'a-l connection'. Not too sure if I pulled it off fantastically, but it is looking a lot nicer. I also messed with a different treatment on films. I need to do something with this to integrate it more into the logo rather then having it be this bastard child that sits on the sidelines. Keep the critiques coming guys, I truly appreciate it!

tinch

jcroft's picture

Latest version is defenitly my favorite...I like the e-t and c-a ligs much better now and i also like the new size of the dot on the i. Still not sure about "films". It looks nice where it's at, but as you said, you probably need it to be more prominent. Hmmm...

beejay's picture

The type is Senator from Emigre, yeah?

I was reminded of Scriptek ... it has an 'r'
that is kinda what I was getting at.

I like where this is going, but the blackletter
swooshes, could they be truncated before they
hit the other letters?

and the 'aliber' seems like it needs to be nudged left.

and if you look at only the white space
in aliber, you can see that there are a few
areas that can either be tracked or tightened.

compare the a-l to the i-b.

These are all way nitpicky things...

Scriptek Test Drive.


great stuff so far,

bj

beejay's picture

oops, internal server + refresh = double post

hrant's picture

Doesn't it say "true Taliban" to anybody besides me?

hhp

tinch's picture

tc2005

HHP, You know what I was thinking about that too! For readability sake I am threw the 'c' back in, but also condensed some things to lessen the negative space in the ligature which was one of the main reasons we took the 'c' out in the first place. I was even able to incorprate the tail back into the 'c' which was a pleasant surprise. I re-did the ligature a bit and used the same arc for the top swoop that was used for the bottom swoop one to give it more sense of consistency and flow. Sorry if it seems if I keep going back and forth with stuff, but everytime I either step forward or backward it gets better so please bear with me. I am also trying the word cinema instead. Another stamp of 'seriousness' that I would like the company to have. Suggestions? Death threats? let me know.

BJ, Jeff, Yes that is Senator Ultra font from the Emigre family slightly nipped and tucked. The ligature is an almagation of Old English T & C. Cinema is in Linotype Extd Light.

tinch

Dan Weaver's picture

Roger the problem I have is you're trying to make two things into one thing. Listen to bj about the type, and where did the spur come from on the l when everything else is a slab serif. You have a type logo and a mark. Two different things. Think of CBS they have the eye (mark) and CBS type (logo). Work on the elements separately then figure ways to combine them. Problems are easier solved if reduced to smaller chunks of information. HHP you crack me up

tinch's picture

I actually agree with you since I had the weekend to think about what direction my design was going. First and foremost it was getting too 'gothic-like' and dark. Here is the logo that everyone seems to like. What fonts can you suggest that would complement it well? I'm open to everybody's thoughts!

logo

kakaze's picture

I still say what you had before is the best.

The third rendering shown on Tuesday, December 02, 2003 - 2:45 pm.

rcapeto's picture

Here is the logo that everyone seems to like. What fonts can
you suggest that would complement it well?


It

Miss Tiffany's picture

Roger, I hate to be a partypooper, but I think that you have too much spice in your recipe. Did you switch to CINEMA from FILMS for a reason other than just to test the waters? It is probably too small for certain uses. The way you've created almost a ligature from the way you've joined the words and letters, while interesting, is perhaps too tricky. It could be read, by the casual glance as "true T caliber" or "true C caliber" it is almost redundant. In some ways, I think your original post is still the strongest. You used color and shape and placement to separate. You had a "mark" that could be used separately when necessary. The "nipping and tucking" you did to the emigre face is very nice, you should focus on that, and find a way to create a separate mark.

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