If you haven’t noticed already, LiNK’s image recently got a makeover, so we thought we would share some thoughts behind the design.
As you know, LiNK exists for the people of North Korea and everything we do points back to our belief in their eventual freedom. This vision and belief has only become stronger and more focused in recent years, as our programs continue to grow and we see the true impact of our work in the lives of North Koreans every day. The new image reflects our belief in the people of North Korea, as well as our continued commitment to seeing Liberty in North Korea.
Why share the thinking behind the design? LiNK is more than an organization — we are a belief in what others shrug off as impossible, a movement of people devoted to the freedom of the North Korean people. This means LiNK does not need supporters to just “like” us and think we’re a “cool” organization, we need our followers to believe in and join our movement. This is about you. We believe that when people unite for a common goal and fight for a shared belief, anything can be accomplished. Therefore, we want you to know the meaning behind the visuals representing this movement, because when it comes down to it, YOU are the movement. Below are just a couple aspects of our new image we thought were important to share.
We don’t really think of this as a logo, but a straightforward statement of our vision.
North Korea has been represented as a “red box,” referring to its “communist” history and the closed-off nature (and you might even say sharp edges) of the country. Although we cannot know the exact path through which the North Korean people will gain their freedom, it is clear that pressure from the people on the inside will be crucial for producing a transformation of the country. Simply put, liberty in North Korea will come from within the red box.
Remember when your parents said, “It’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it”? Well, it’s true! And that is why we chose Futura as our typeface.
Warning: this section gets really nerdy.
Futura was designed by Paul Renner in 1927. The straight forward and geometric design of the typefaces is rooted in an art/design movement and school during this time known as “Bauhaus,” which among other ideologies, was an effort to bring “art” back to the masses, making it functional and in service of people. Futura can be seen anywhere from your local donut shop sign to the instructions on your medicine bottle. It gets the job done without distraction or glitter. It is within the same ranks as Helvetica as the people’s typeface. Generally the rule of thumb for choosing a brand typeface is to use something new and unique that no one else has used, making you stand out from the crowd. But if you don’t already know, we are not too keen on following “the rules”, so we disagree and do our own thing. Futura is bold, efficient, and in the service of the people, as are we.
Futura is also closely aligned with Bauhaus in its fixation on looking to the future, rather than reviving past ideas. Much of what we refer to as Modern Art has roots from the Bauhaus school. The genius in the design of Futura is that it has kept its meaning intact, and stood the test of time. While type design has ebbed and flowed from trend to trend, Futura is a constant, and when used properly still represents the idea of boldly looking to the future. For this reason, Futura seemed a perfect choice for the first typeface on the moon. (Well, at least that we know of.) Every mission that has successfully reached the moon has left a plaque behind, each set in Futura. Pretty cool. Therefore, our belief in the future and in accomplishing something that once seemed impossible, is another reason we chose to work with Futura.
So there you have it. Thanks for reading. Glad to have you along for the mission.
TONY SASSO | Creative Director
NICK LEONARD | Designer
ERIC KANG | Design Intern