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Northeastern University Under Armour Rebrand

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Earlier this year, Northeastern University signed a multi-year apparel deal with Under Armour to begin this fall. With this process, the University and UA have vowed to look into the school's sports branding top to bottom.


I have a bit of a soft spot for Northeastern. I like the school, I like the hockey team, and I like Matthews Arena. However, the possibility of a rebrand is like a dream come true. I absolutely hate Northeastern's branding. To me it screams 1930s High School. In particular team's signature husky logo reminds me of the oft-panned Detroit Tigers logo of the 1920s. Northeastern did try a rebrand in the 1990s that was pretty terrible and a rebrand in the 2000s that was better, before reverting to the classic look in 2007.


So, I decided to take my stab at a rebrand. Most important to me was providing a look that retained the same basic elements, but more modern and fitting of a school whose athletic success has mostly occurred within the last half decade.

 

The N: With the N, I wanted to take the generic two colored, static logo and make it bold and dynamic. Initially I was going to move away from the split color number, but everything looked too Nebraska for my taste, so the split-color letter returned.

 

The Husky: As I said earlier, I despise the current husky logo, and I wanted to make a more modern take on the dog. Not much really to say other than it retains the iconic red eye and goes for a more simplified look.

 

(Click to Enlarge (You might have to click again to be able to see it well enough))

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BONUS CONTENT:

I've always been a bit of a history nerd and I've always liked taking old logos I've designed and give them a refresh as I continue to develop and improve. In the past I've developed retrospectives of my work, including my MSU Brigade Designs and Personal Logo Development.

 

I actually designed a concept for Northeastern back in 2014 when I was still towards the beginning of my logo designing foray (I had one or two back in 2011, but I rarely did logo designs before 2014), and really liked it and was proud of it. Now, not so much. But I do think it is an excellent example of how far I have developed in the past few years. The image below features the current logo, my 2014 concept, the concept above, and my 2016 Michigan Tech Huskies logo, which I included as avoiding making the logos look too simiar was an important part of this design process.

 

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I mostly show this as an example because I see a lot of people on the site who say things like "Go easy on me because I'm not a good artist," and that frustrates me. I myself believed that and looked up at the phenomenal designers on this website wondering how they could possibly draw like that, and assumed I wouldn't be able to. And clearly I wasn't able to for a long time. I'm not saying I'm some phenomenal artist or designer (I wouldn't say I'm close to the top tier of guys on this site), but I've absolutely improved to make some work I'm proud of that I never thought I'd be able to years ago. If you really love logo and uniform design and you really want to be involved, take the time and effort, even if you objectively aren't good right now.

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Amazing! Will you be doing hockey uniforms? 

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I think the Primary N needs to be cleaned up. It doesn't first read as an N for me, more of an H, and the wave throws things off too. I think both the black outline and the N itself can be lightened up in weight (only a little), and the wave made a straight line. I understand the desire for more movement in a logo that felt very static before, but it throws off the balance and flow of the logo in my opinion. My only other nitpick would be that something looks off about the jaw of the demon dog.

What I love:

-The slanting of the N, and the increase in stroke width. (I think there's a happy medium and you're close to it)

-The new demon dog. Looks fierce as hell, and would look great on uniforms.

 

And you're wrong that you're not in the 'top tier' of designers on here. There's a good 50-60 designers on here who are incredibly talented, and you're sure as hell one of them. Don't sell yourself short.

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On 5/17/2018 at 10:47 PM, ATolly66 said:

Amazing! Will you be doing hockey uniforms? 

 

Probably/Possibly. I actually designed these logos a few weeks back, and just posted them recently. I've run into a major time crunch for the next two months or so, and won't have much time to work on concepts. I definitely would like to have some hockey uniforms designed, and already have the idea down. If they do come, they won't be for a little while.

 

On 5/17/2018 at 11:31 PM, Jake3.roo said:

I think the Primary N needs to be cleaned up. It doesn't first read as an N for me, more of an H, and the wave throws things off too. I think both the black outline and the N itself can be lightened up in weight (only a little), and the wave made a straight line. I understand the desire for more movement in a logo that felt very static before, but it throws off the balance and flow of the logo in my opinion. My only other nitpick would be that something looks off about the jaw of the demon dog.

What I love:

-The slanting of the N, and the increase in stroke width. (I think there's a happy medium and you're close to it)

-The new demon dog. Looks fierce as hell, and would look great on uniforms.

 

And you're wrong that you're not in the 'top tier' of designers on here. There's a good 50-60 designers on here who are incredibly talented, and you're sure as hell one of them. Don't sell yourself short.

 

I actually did make a version of the N logo that was a little bit thinner for wordmark and nameplate purposes but lost it in an inkscape crash. Once I have the time and energy to make another undertaking at the complete font package, I'll definitely take a look at the changes to the N to make it a bit more legible.

 

In regard to the designer thing, I actually agree with you that top 50-60 is a pretty accurate group for me to be a part of, haha. When I said top tier, I was more referring to like top 10-15 guys who just have this mind blowing talent and seem to stop everything on the boards when they post. Not so much a dig at myself as it was more an acknowledgement of the incredible work others do around here. Thank you for the kind words though, they're definitely appreciated.

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