PixelACHE festival logo

juha's picture

Hello, everybody. I came across this forum recently and since then I have been reading previous critiques and enjoyed them very much.

Two years ago I designed a logo for a media art festival pixelACHE. I am currently writing my thesis to end my studies. Describing how I created the visual identity for this festival is part of my thesis.


PixelACHE -festival aims to find and expose creativity in the gray zone between art, science and design. Term pixelache means the state of mind when one over consumes screen based media.

For more information and some history about the festival and logo evolution see:

The logo consist of two parts. The purpose of word pixel is to mirror strong do-it-yourself attitude and working with computers. The ache part of the logo is ment to mirror the the emotional overload part of the festival.

I'd love to hear your critiques, thank you in advance for your comments.


cgonzalez's picture


i liked how you worked the pixel type, but i do thin k that the contrast between pixel and ACHE is too much, it doesn't seem to fit right to me, i think that the extreme contrast is on the size of ACHE if we compare it with Pixel.


BTW. The e of Pixel has a white point below the eye that i think you should remove it.

Miguel Hernandez's picture

-The logo consist of two parts.

They are NOT inmersively connected between them, it look like two words near to another, but not as one.

-The purpose of word pixel is to mirror strong do-it-yourself attitude and working with computers.

only the do it yourself attitude is implicit, because of the disorder in the drawing of teh pixel letters, there are a mediocre poor effort of balance. The pixel counterform is my reason to use the Mediocre word, sorry about that but is poor argument in your proposal.

-The ache part of the logo is ment to mirror the emotional overload part of the festival.

ACHE is a bold, almost black, grotesk type. Can youi elaborate your meaning of emotional overload?

keep on,


juha's picture

I think my description about the do-it-yourself attitude and the emotional overload were a bit miss leading in the first place because they are more or less invented after the design was finished. Perhaps another example of do-it-yourself attitude and even unprofessionality.

Here is how everything went. In year 2002 the input about the festival for me was: audiovisual experiments and creative misuse of technology, DIY lo-fi/hi-fi performances and installations, the art of programming. My intuitive response was this logo:


The idea was computer made vs. hand made + my vision of ache/

kirsten's picture


I like that you avoided the cliche of using a word made up of pixels. However, I don't feel the logotype really captures the concept of art, science and technology. The hand drawn font although artistic, it also looks dated, like a 60's rock poster.


And the sans you selected is heavy, but to me, it doesn't convey "emotional overload" nor science/technology.

You are trying to communicate a lot of ideas and complex ideas too. (Computers, Festival, Do-It-Yourself, Art meets Academic meets Commercial, Emotional Overload, All Are Welcome, Encourage Creativity, Fullness/Pain-Ache/Ahky, Control, Standardization, Process vs. Result) Technology can work to your advantage here since a logo designed for the web can metamorphize into many things to help convey ALL of your concepts. But when it comes to print you will need to simplify and focus on one or two primary concepts. There are a lot of interesting visuals from the festival look to them for more inspiration.

dan's picture

Kirsten, do you know Jimmi's song "Cross Town Traffic" it will be a theme song when the Elephants come to Manhattan, boy do I dread it.

kirsten's picture

Great song. Traffic will be a nightmare. Trying to avoid NYC that week.

juha's picture

Thank you Kirsten for your comments. I

dan's picture

Juha, the visuals are interesting but confusing to anyone but those directly in the know. I think you need a theme line or tag line to pull it together.

rush's picture

The visuals are good imho, as they symbolize media. The logo doesn't remind me of digital media, so i like that there is other graphical elements that do so.

kirsten's picture

By simplifying the message I didn't mean that the logo should stand alone in a void, but rather pick the main theme/message you are trying to communicate and focus on conveying that message. For example Art vs Technology, or Art in the Digital Media Age, or the Visual Overload one can get from viewing too much Digital Media, or Technology vs. Chaos. I think you are trying to get the logo to say too much and the end result is that the message is unclear.

I like that you are using a hand-drawn font to represent art. Although it sounds like you want to communicate Digital Art specifically. The rectangle counters you have subtley allude to digital art but the first impression is 60's rock (very un-digital). You may also want to re-think your font choice for Ache. Or at least how it's postioned. The obvious cliche solution to illustrate overload is to put Ache on top of Pixel. I am not recommending you do this, except as an exersize to play more with the words, letterforms, kerning, placement etc. Playing with these forms will spark more ideas and solutions.

Your other visuals are interesting. I get a technological feel from them but it is more organic than chaotic. Your 1's and 0's seem like they are flowing down a river. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing, it just doesn't represent chaos. Or are these screen shots from video and the swirling symbols become more chaotic as the video progresses?

Keep working on it I'm looking forward to your next post.

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