In the beginning there was the logo.
Well, not really. Logos and product names normally are, literally, an afterthought. But to us, not so much.
Since we tend to think strategically, “with the end in mind”, we see the company name, the product name, the product logo, and the product itself as an integrated entity. And to such extent that, in our case, the development of the Traqpod was somehow “illuminated” by those first three key IP assets, which were developed early and almost simultaneously (all of them deserving of a future “The Why” post).
Today I will focus on the logo origin and development.
What does the logo represent? The short version is: it’s a “hypocycloid” (yes, it’s a real thing and you can google some nice GIF animations if you don’t believe us). But why is our logo based on that? Well, that begs the long version. Here it goes. Read on at your peril:
Making a logo is hard for even the best design agency (ours), specially when their client (us) doesn’t really know what they want (us again). So after a number of boring, clichéd and understandably failed logo attempts, we client were politely told by agency it would be of great help to them if we at least could provide some inspiration in the form of, say, some technical feature of the product itself, or maybe by a logo we liked, or, ideally, both. Or, less ideally, just by whatever. In our case, luckily, it was both. No desperate “whatever” was finally needed.
First, a side note: Why is the TESLA logo such a brilliant, world-class logo? Because not only it clearly shows the “T” in “Tesla”. It also depicts a key part of the internals of an electric motor (a section of the so-called “laminations” the wire windings wrap around). The beauty of this coincidence, of this seamless fusion between technical roots and graphic identity, just makes me cry. Really.
Well, our case is similar: our initial prototype motor was already a hub motor, but not a direct-drive one. It had what is called a “planetary gear” inside (again, do some googling for GIF animations and you’ll quickly get the idea). The trajectory described by any given point of the “planet” gears as they roll around the “sun” gear is called a hypocycloid. Depending on the relative ratio between the two radiuses involved (“sun” and “planet”), it may so happen that the resulting outline reminds you of a trefoil. And yes, it may also remind you of something else. Some other logo: Acrobat’s. No, you don’t have to google for that logo. It’s engraved in our minds already. It’s that good.
So now you see what untangled our creative mess, and what started the *comparatively* simple final stretch of our logo creation, described in the animation above. Carles and Jordi at our design studio decided to break the symmetry of the original cold, math-based trefoil to give it a more organic look, then slimmed it down to make it lighter, maybe toying with the lightness of a butterfly, then finally chose colors that meant life and nature and sports and motion. Done.
That last part may seem like a lot of work, and it really is (don’t try this it at home), but we call it “simple final stretch” because, really, once you’ve solved a logo’s roots and storytelling, as Tesla did with their “T” and the laminations, and as we did with the hypocycloid, the rest is, or hope will be, history.