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[Precious Plastic] Help us make the new Logo

This topic contains 105 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  Chris V 3 years ago.

TomasHalberstad tomashalberstad

[Precious Plastic] Help us make the new Logo

22/10/2015 at 10:30

For this step, then, we want to see how you envision the Precious Plastic logo looking. We want you to take inspiration from what we’ve summarized in this post. Also we’ve got some points of inspiration of our own that we want you to keep in mind:

connectedness – network – recycle – empowerment – inclusiveness – cycle – upcycle – people – cross cultural cooperation – hope – positivity – freshness of ideas and ideals – contemporary look&feel – open-source – DIY – plastic as a resource – waste as an empowering tool – valuable – new priorities from the people – tackling problems we’ve created first person – new direction – precious – new priorities

Get going and show us those logos! Preferably with a short explanation on your thinking.

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22/10/2015 at 20:56

I just found out you were looking for help about the logo. I will work on something tonight. Really excited about helping, I really like this project

23/10/2015 at 13:48

A lot of things communicate recyclable, in particular the recycling icon, but if that is the main point, then that becomes the product. That is an expectation of a product we all know, that doesn’t quite work.
Its an idea at first, one where especially a logo, helps introduce the product. However, what kind of product is it? Is the idea behind it novel and admirable, even tangible at that, or something more?

You wouldn’t introduce a disabled comic as someone doing disabled comedy.
Likewise I think being recycled is something that should be alluded to, not put first and foremost.

Its a tough sell, and we all know how we want the story to play out. If something is funny, it is funny, the success-story is how it comes from a place of struggle, and uphill battle.

We may be thinking our way there, and getting a bit too far ahead. In the real world however, the first connotations that come to mind with the recycling symbol, even as someone who is really into and aware of it, is things that smell of recycling, and waste, primarily.
I appreciate it tremendously, but ideally its not what I want to like the most about a product. First and foremost i want the design, utilitarian and aesthetic nature to play along and inspire me, beyond wanting to use it.

The open hardware symbol is something to be considered, as more of a fresh take on things, representing some of the goto and sharing attitude of my generation, its the technical side, for a project that has one foot in each. Having both, as a sign of commitment and intent, makes sense, but not always in plain view. Also the type of plastic, if applicable, should be included in the recycling symbol.

If you want to make a lasting product, it has to be a good one, something you want to own or use. Pair that with a visual design that focuses on the visuals, with inventive meaning, ideally one that is good, and all arrows are pointing upwards.
We may all want there to be more recycling and to make our ecosystem more sustainable, but its a lot easier to get things done if that is a side benefit to getting things done.

Recommending a product, because its a good product, made well, is easier. Picking that battle is the point in time where its sustainability gives it an edge and a meaning.
Much like I don’t make logos for things I don’t support, the artistic side of it could be good, but it is meaningless without starting there. Yes you can think of it as a symbiosis, ok, lets start there and make sure its not only benign, but that we don’t skip anything.

I think the first point to make with design is to know your material. Lets steal that idea. Not everything can easily be produced on and with plastic.
The most interesting way to do it is by heating something made of metal and stamping it on there. It keeps the tools and results reproducible.

Start on a 21×17 grid and drill away the negative space, getting a bit of rounding in return if you CNC-it with a “bigger than straight edges resolution” sized drill-bit.
Or you can cast it by arranging some squares to make a mould and go back and forth till you have a die-cast. Or you can draw or put squares, on the product.

It is quite low-fi, but in a sense that it matches the production-process. No elaborate design-manual needed, and very easy to get ‘right’, even if that doesn’t mean 100%.

I think with a very organic and by nature thereof, complex design, becomes too much of one thing. A stylish design however offsets products aren’t 100% polished, like they are now, and scales well should you get there.

We are somewhere now, and might get to a potential future later, needing to be be recognisable all the way, not out of place at any time, now or however far we can get.
Something very organic I think would befit a product that is 100% polished, but then being a niche item for people who are already into that sort of mindset. Lets change mindsets.

You could meet in the middle by adding or taking away depending on how to see things, but even so arrive at more than the sum of parts.

I like presenting visuals for visuals, not conditioning people into what they should see. It either works or it doesn’t, and then we can talk about it if there is something to see.
Its a first impression, that’s what you have to work with, beyond that, there is nothing. There might be more things to see, or any number of other things, but those then become unfortunate.
A first impression is a good one if it makes a lasting impact, and is instantly recognisable and unique.

Looking at logos and how they progress, they tend to lose the font part, as the companies behind them get bigger, in cases where they have one visual and one largely unrelated to the project or visuals textual element.
Doing more with less here, and having some sort of foresight and grips on where we want to go is good.

Some designers even have no logo, or no mark on their products. IMO that is a bit removed from the workmanship of it, as it sometimes also is. However I like the idea, but there is no room to go through 100+ designs of every product, inherently a wasteful process,
to establish a visual identity that is uniform to the rest of the ‘line’. Instead I think its good to in the cases where it makes sense, to hide the logo underneath, and in other cases not slap it on there to try and cover over anything that should have been corrected elsewhere.

Using something as a plaster-band for selling or hyping products works maybe once, and to some not even then. It runs the risk of damaging an identity.
If what you want out of it is that same timeless and forever recognisable design-language that ‘design-product’-designers strive for.

Producing plastics that are for the most part solid objects has a sweet-spot of being simple and sleek if the shape is good. Add as little as possible, or actually, only/as much of -what benefits what is there already, and that is a desirable product.

Writing the logo in a font on a physical object is a bit cheesy, and also it might not fit physically, many tangible plastic objects are very small, or have a small area for where to fit a logo.
Mentally it, with the name it has, is the opposite of what the guidelines wish for, its an indo-european name, a good name at that, but lets see beyond ourselves to meet the people we want to reach, on equal terms.

Dave Hakkens visual identity to me seems like one of ‘do-it-yourself’, as he does, hakkening the planet. So on a website or otherwise, I think pairing logo with his handwriting, as used elsewhere, is a good idea.

24/10/2015 at 18:58

Colours open possibilities, this blend did particularly well in peer review.

25/10/2015 at 12:39

Excited to see what you come up with!

26/10/2015 at 16:05

O boy, that is a lot of text for a visual guy like me! Neither way, good job! Like your thinking behind it, very thorough. A lot of different logo ideas pop my mind of the things you are saying, many different elements that could be interesting to build upon. Let’s try to make the visuals as broad as your thoughts, creating a big variety. I’ll try to make some myself based on your words as well 🙂

27/10/2015 at 08:10

Hi, Hey !

Nice to e-meet every member of this incredible community.
Just as you, I’m here to help create a better world. My name is Mattia and I am an interaction designer trained in London (LCC), now working across Europe. I develop digital experiences and identities for people and businesses I believe are doing good, no time for corporate hypocrisy (I worked for microsoft but that was a mistake). Here are some of my previous work for you guys:

Julia Exposito

After meeting Dave in July we started to work on the logo and quickly decided to open the process up to the community to get a more holistic, open source approach. We planned a creative journey with a number of different steps to involve all of you, however after a couple of weeks we realized that the specific interaction from the community (you) went beyond what we planned. We then had to readapt our original plan to fit your feed back.

I will now create a number of posts where I introduce different logo concepts, concepts deriving from your initial input.
Any feed backs, comments, tips, ideas, feeling or doubts will help create the new Precious Plastic logo.

27/10/2015 at 08:17


Based on your input we developed a number of logo inspired by the recycling motif. As @bikaro, @vratislav-pecka, @gujonon, @sanp, @imsomagic said the recycling aesthetic carries specific meaning people can quickly refer to. In my opinion when using the recycling logo we also need to be extremely careful not to fall within dangerous cliches and visual banality. The following logo are attempting to abstract the original recycling logo to give Precious Plastic a contemporary and memorable look. As proposed by @gujonon I also tried to create a logo that resembles the shredder’s blades to encapsulate power and strength.

*Please don’t provide any feed back on colors, we will take care of that in a second moment.

27/10/2015 at 14:38

Since they are all basic geometrical shapes with little variation, I imagine they are all used, which means as an indistinguishable take on existing design, it can’t be trademarked onto itself, or again. What’s worse is it has no distinctive identity or feature tying it to Precious Plastic.

(series of J’s)
(bank in need of superfluous identity)
(change this to endoscope and you are unpleasantly close to infringing on http://logopond.com/logos/e7b02176e95fd149b54d4a79adbca4bc.png an actual company in unrelated business)
(A lion with mane)

Spending some time looking this up, anyone will establish an appreciation for how many Möbius, kaleidoscopic, spirograph or just basic fractal type logo-designs there are.

What I think of it is best described as the text accompanying this: http://image.shutterstock.com/z/stock-vector-set-collection-of-trendy-multicolored-overlapping-transparent-circle-shaped-logo-design-elements-248152543.jpg

Stock Vector Illustration:
set collection of trendy multicolored overlapping transparent circle shaped logo design elements

There are no more saw-blades here than anywhere else.

I’m all for recycling, but we might as well turn the b around and use this http://drpete.co/images/bp-logo.png

Given there are no basic shapes left up for grabs, the nature of which means its a mundane goal to have, even for now ones, utilizing a low entropy design is going to be one of too many, and also one in need of constant repetition to have the desired effect.

A basic shaped use smartly, is distinctly taken.

What remains is combining something that actually provokes a thought-process, rather than being something for those that already know, in ways that have multiple qualities.

The idea here is to actually inspire a connotation to recycling, without confusing optical sorting machines, as the official symbol used out of context would.

Contemporary paired with memorable is how you remember what the 80s or 90s looked like.

‘Lasting’ is a quality I want to give plastic.

I don’t know how it fared without the usual ‘energetic logo’ recycle-initiative moniker, but here it is, in green.

28/10/2015 at 02:01


I’m a marketing guy, not a graphic designer but I would like to help you.
I really like your thoughts and appreciate your work for this logo. You’re making this topic alive and seeing your excitement is really cool. Keep going!
I want to share what I think about your suggestions, I hope it’ll be helpful.

Best Regards

28/10/2015 at 02:12


In my opinion the logo must Scream that it is “Precious Plastic” not any other PP brand. When people see it they should think that this is about Plastic. I see more focusing on cycles but there are also figures which can show this is about plastic.
By the way I wish I came in July, we would have meet. 🙂

Best Regards

28/10/2015 at 08:01

@johnp thanks for your input, noted!
keep checking for the next round of logos, they will be focused on the letter P to make the PP identity more specific and unique.
*Shame we couldn’t meet, I’m sure there will be another occasion.

28/10/2015 at 08:14

Hey @kingu, honestly thanks for your feed back.
This kind of critical feed back is the reasons why we’ve opened up the process to the community- we want to get the best possible logo for Precious Plastic.
Your feed back is very useful for us and at times spot on.

Thanks for your logo suggestions too, we’ll keep them as a valuable starting point for the next round of logo concepts. However I belive green is a color to avoid, too often paired with greenwash propaganda it carries a number of contextual allusion we’d rather avoid.

Would love to hear your thoughts on the next round of logo concept proposal, keep tuned!

28/10/2015 at 08:36

02. Logotype P

For this second round of logo concept we decided to focus on the letter P.
Abstracting the logo to the letter P could create a very distinctive mark of Precious Pastic. If we manage to also keep it simple it could be incredibly versatile and memorable when used in different context (web, print, machines, merchandise etc.).
In the following examples I wanted to give the letter P a young, fresh, curious, dynamic, lively, vivacious and spirited feel.
In previous feed back @dave pointed out that the current styling of the P might look a bit immature- but I kind of like the idea of PP being slightly immature, irrational, able to make mistake and start again, improve, learn and eventually become mature. I am not sure we are already mature, and the logo could represent just that!
The letter could possibly represent the proactive, grassroot nature of this community.

@johnp something you can see fitting with your idea of PP?
@rollo, some of the logos are inspired from the comment you made in the previous thread, what do you think?

*Once again, don’t focus your feed back on the colours as they are simply speculative.

28/10/2015 at 15:51

but I kind of like the idea of PP being slightly immature, irrational, able to make mistake and start again, improve, learn and eventually become mature.

That’s actually nice way of phrasing it @mattia-io.

I am not sure we are already mature, and the logo could represent just that!

i’m convinced, like it!

28/10/2015 at 16:10

This is developing real well! My favorite is the last one, perhaps hide an arrow-shape somewhere in there pointing up?

28/10/2015 at 16:21

We’ve been using this “unofficial” logo for a while. PP stands for well, Precious Plastic. However this is also the icon for Polypropyleen. Which I figured was be a nice link! However it turns out the is just confusing. But what do you think in general about using the recycle icon? Use or avoid? I have mixed feelings with it.

28/10/2015 at 18:14

It will however trick optical sorting machines, which limits the marketability and defeats the purpose somewhat. I like the DIY aesthetic a lot more than the stock icon. There is a ground-upwards dynamic to it.

Which is why I proposed you write the font-part of the logo in your handwriting. It communicates a lot of personality and charisma, and separates PP from the likes of government-initiative programs.

I think that home-made icon would be nice along a set of others, explaining the difference and quality of each type of plastic group.

There is some education to that, but importantly it raises awareness to how plastic isn’t just a commodity that is just ‘there’.

28/10/2015 at 18:37

Precious Plastic most discerning quality, before you know anything else, is it rolls of the tongue, and it singles itself out with that double P.

You are actually missing out on a good point to make without any double P visuals. It’s much easier to remember the name if you have that to go by, and also it helps make the connection between the two.

To answer you and make the distinction, the winning move is to not have a logo like any other, which means any variant of just double P is already out.

Adding to that, which other points other than the alliteration could be made? To me, in order of importance: Something precious, recycling, people, collaboration.

Boil it down, that is the who, what, why and how of precious plastic.

Remaining simple and aesthetically pleasing, that is how I see it.

28/10/2015 at 18:54

It is not distinctive, other than ‘popular Android-app’. You can do https://play.google.com/store/search?q=p&c=apps&rating=1 with any letter. Everything remaining the same.

Same story on https://f-droid.org/repository/browse/?fdstyle=grid albeit a little less polished.

Which begs the question, are we trying to make it look like plastic?

I also like that last letter best. Try writing it out in full in similar letters.

28/10/2015 at 23:14

Well in kingu’s theory world’s biggest steel producers have Android App logos. I don’t think there is a classification like:
App logo type, textile industry logo type, sportive logo type…There are definetly some aesthetic values(typography, calligraphy…) and ethics but no class.
Anyway I think making it look more plastic with some effect would be good. I vote for 2nd design, the last one is just not complete…last one needs an arrow for expressing the recycling.

29/10/2015 at 07:26

Thanks @kingu for your always prompt feed back.
Will try to spell out PRECUIOUS based on that specific aesthetic approach- it might take some days though. However in my opinion the letters do not resemble any of the andoid icons you’ve linked to.
But I see what you mean, they fall within the same corporate/ start up iconography and visual identity- however we might want to include some of the practices these businesses implement as they are the result of an historical design curve proven to be right to certain extent based on user response and customer interaction. What motivates us might be different but our goal is fundamentally the same- appeal to the greatest possible number of people to expand PP as much as possible. This is why I propose to implement, or at least consider, some of the design strategies implemented by those multimillion businesses and the incredibly professional and smart design studios behind their campaigns.

Answering your question, we do not want to necessarily recall/ make it look like plastic, would be good to hint at it but is not a must. The modular nature of the above letter is a conceptual reference to the different members of the community, its connectedness, the cycle we are trying to create, the diversity of the plastic that we use and most importantly is a reference to the actual process behind the machines that put together meaningless, disconnected bits of discarted plastics create something greater.

Will work on more option.

29/10/2015 at 13:39

Contrary to stating otherwise, my point, as shared above, is that general one-letter design is bland. Not less so if also big steel was doing it. However you will find some of them combine the difficult art of working latin letters into visual elements.

A lot of thought and effort went into that, and as such, it is a lasting impression that isnt just seen and discarded.

Doing both idea and look, maybe even if both are not special, puts you in good company, or tough competition depending on how you see it.

To me distinctive is closely tied to unique, being better is decidedly not within realms of mediocrity.

29/10/2015 at 13:54

I understand that mindset, but maybe buying into the consumption of it is part of the problem we are trying to solve?

Becoming a multi-million dollar company, or even one that has a say in things, doesn’t by necessity start with imitating their visual profile.

The amount of start-ups that look a certain way is most of them, especially prevalent are those that use visual and textual identity to shroud what they are doing, or what they fail to do.

Most of them, especially the biggest ones, are quite poor when it comes to the matter at stake here.
Shoulder to shoulder with that, Precious Plastic pales in comparison, because it is the polar opposite.

A multi million dollar company generally doesn’t need me to make small efforts, it also at no point challenges any ideas, or for the most part even bring new ones.

I remember when recycling wasn’t trendy or popular, however if we are one of many selling themselves on this idea, it might get filtered out if by all other means it is indistinguishable from mere building of brand mindshare, based on what visual profile ‘looks the best’.

From the ground up, honesty. Start with the idea, and stick to it. Hopefully that will prove more successful than most.

29/10/2015 at 14:01

I dont know what picture 1 is, nor if im supposed to.
The crab has some mascot feel to it, it is not one of the intentional elements.

The pixelfaults you introduced haunt my mind.

With a straight down topside view its close to impossible recognising it, even in real. Boiling that down is not a good starting-point. I like it, but it doesn’t do anything. Sure it is novel, fun and exiting, but replace something very valuable, it does not.

Would work as a spinning animation loading-bar.

02/11/2015 at 09:32

Liked the logos @mattia-io proposed. -The circular infinite symbols. But agree that they where still to generic. Tried to make it more personal making them out of shredder plastic flakes. Not sure how I feel about it. To much confetti look?

02/11/2015 at 09:39

Nice photoshopped @kingu! We’re still exploring all options though.
Perhaps use your skills to create some other logos as well?

02/11/2015 at 13:21

By going in the direction of removing yourself from the starting-point of infringement, you have taken something that works, and added something that doesn’t.

Still too much https://d13yacurqjgara.cloudfront.net/users/47145/screenshots/791617/104.jpg of a good thing, without the element that made it something more, a lion. To me it looks actively repulsive and less recognisable. It says finger-painted collage in a way that woodworking doesn’t sell itself on wood-chips, even though that is in large part what you can observe about it.

Multicolours, while easy to accomplish, in raw form, is probably the least desirable part of plastics-recycling.

I have yet to see recycling solve things as a function of being only that.
If I were to venture a guess, I’d say its either a street art mock on an existing logo taken out of context, or the 1994 t-shirt of a UN peace convention. Be that as it may, something to provoke thought or inspire, it doesn’t change anything on the level that matters.

04/11/2015 at 10:53

03. Plastic Bag Flag

Hello Awesome Community,
For this new concept I decided to focus on one of Precious Plastic most fundamental assets, the infamous Plastic Bag. I assume a lot of the plastic that will be used in PP process will be or have been a plastic shopping bag. I thought we could use the plastic bag as PP mascot, turning its peception inside out from being an enemy of our environmental drives to be a collaborator granting it a new set of values. Inspired by a famous Bansky graffiti and the famous “La Liberté Guidant Le Peuple” (Eugène Delacroix), I have drawn a couple of possible concepts for PP logo with a plastic bag used as a flag.

@johnp, is this “screaming that it is “Precious Plastic”?

Looking forward to know your opinions on this!
@rollo @danielalvarado @bikaro @vratislav-pecka @gujonon @sanp @imsomagic

04/11/2015 at 10:55

and here is a more illustrative one

04/11/2015 at 15:57

I like the idea @mattia-io Well done

Now I ask, How do you feel it would be better to represent PP, with a happy looking like plastic bag or sad one? I ask this because we want people to using the plastics bags, therefore the bag itself could be happy o sad because it will be no longer be useful

I believe that the bag should be happy (assuming it has consciousness :D) because it would be better for the greater good to stop polluting the planet

I like the second one better then the first and would change the background

Great job 😀 Have a great day

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