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A new identity for Planet X

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  • Producer
    Planet X, Bureaudonald, Unwind
  • Concept visuele identiteit Planet X
    Dennis Kleyn & Donald Roos
  • Ontwerp & art direction
    Donald Roos, Bureaudonald
  • Ident
    Roel Meijering
  • Website realisatie
    Unwind Creative Technology

Planet X is growing. And we have been doing that for over ten years. We are growing in Visual Effects, both in The Netherlands and in Belgium, but also develop new departments like Planet X Tech and Planet X Title Design. To keep growing, it's also good to keep an eye on yourself. 

Our existing corporate identity has been adjusted on-the-go over the past years, but more and more often we were the limits: there was no clear line; the old logo offered no opportunity for new branches. When the logo was used in small sizes - for example, as an icon or avatar on social media — it cluttered. The logo slowly began to feel outdated.

Even more importantly, the old logo no longer represents what Planet X stands for.

 

Core message
Planet X stands for specialists. Filmmakers do not come to us for a cheap package deal, but for our creativity. We are progressive when it comes to innovation and new technology, at the same time we are keen on our broad knowledge of filmmaking and history. It is important that this is reflected in our visual identity.

For the development of the new logo and corporate identity, we worked together with typographer and art director Donald Roos (Donald is also responsible for the Title Design department).

 

Development
Donald about the design process: “When developing a new identity for an existing company that has an excellent track record, you do not want to throw everything straight away. But it's also good to start with a clean sheet of paper. In the end, the pencil and paper are my primary design tools. It all starts with a sketch, free your mind; you can add elements of the existing identity later. That way of working is also similar to the way Planet X works.”

 

First sketches

Digital sketches

Name
Planet X is not an easy name. Previously, the name was Planet X FX. That gave a lot of struggle. People often used it wrong: Planet FX, Planet VFX, or just Planet. To solve that problem, we chose to use only ‘Planet X’. Using only ‘Planet X’ also gives the possibility to add branches: Planet X Visual Effects, Planet X Belgium, Planet X Tech, Planet X Title Design.

Also, the name Planet X itself does not have a direct link to film or television. (The name finds its origin in the graduation project of Dennis Kleyn). That means that we had to put that aspect into the logo too.

Finally, it was good to give the logo a look as it had been there for years already. A bit of retro — that fits with our solid knowledge — but it also prevents people from thinking that we are a “new kid.”

 

Donald is checking the logo on details

Final logo
In the final logo, we use a geometric font that fits the tradition of the Futura typeface (the typeface used by NASA for the plaque that remained on the moon).

The round curves of the letters create a kind of planets. The word Planet X connects two "light rims" of two planets. At the same time, these light rims also refer to CinemaScope. And that's another reference to film and television.

Under the logo, there is room for an addition such as Visual Effects, Belgium, Tech, Title Design or a branch of which we are not yet aware that it will come in the future.

For smaller use or Social Media, we developed a special version, with only the letters plx.

 

A new ident
Of course, to a new logo also belongs a new ident. We inspired the new ident on the ‘big bang.’ Planets come to you, after which two planets form the logo. At the same time, the top and bottom create a 2:35 framework; accentuating the cinemascope aspect in the logo.

 

(Cinema)Scope
We also use the 'scope' effect in many other appearances. For example, our With Compliments card has exactly the 2:35 ratio. But also on our site, all images have a 2:35 ratio. We use the width of the browser and lines that emphasize the width. The underlining of the links on the site is also a line that emerges from the center. At the level of detail, we use the EM dash in text and typography instead of regular dashes — the EM dash is a longer dash.

In all our printing material, typography is centered as a reference to billing blocks. Zoom out again, and you'll see that the logo and addition of a department are also centered and always in the middle.

Dennis Kleyn and Donald Roos during a design meeting

The old and the new logo