You probably already noticed the little square at the top left corner on this site. Yes, it is indeed a new logo for Visualgui. Why a logo now and what does it mean?
Since the launched of this site in 2004, I have always struggled with designing a logo for it. I had designed countless versions and none had met my satisfaction. It got to the point where I just pick a typeface and let it go. In the past few weeks during winter break, I started to play around with it again. I wanted to define what Visualgui is.
When I first decided on my domain name, I loved the site called SK Visual. The site surprisingly still exists; however, its earlier version was much nicer. I just loved the word visual. Then I saw some domain names that were on sell, including one called chunkygui.com. I thought it was kind of funny so I put the two together and ended up with Visualgui. Although Visualgui intended as a visual/design guy, the GUI part has a double entendre of Graphical User Interface. I just ran with it without a clear definition. At first, the site was meant to be my design portfolio. It changed completely when I started to blog. Only two years ago, I decided to separate my personal blog from my professional portfolio. Only this year I have my own name for my domain.
For Visualgui, I wanted to keep it as my blog for as long as I can. Does it really need a logo? Probably not. Who cares? No one, but myself. So it is more or less for me. Because of the name, I wanted to be as legible as possible because Visualgui is really vague. Using a sans serif typeface would solve that issue, but then it is not that unique. So I wanted to experiment with a bit with using squares in a grid. In the previous version, I played around with nine squares (similar to a Rubik’s Cube) and added Futura in each square to spell out Visualgui. It looked kind of cool, but without the letters, they were just nine squares. Then I remember Fit by David Jonathan Ross, which I had helped him a bit on Vietnamese diacritics. With Fit, I could fit each letter into each square. At a large size, each letter looks great. The small size, however, is not so legible. The letters started to look like shapes, but they are not the same. I like the ambiguousness of it just like the name of the site.
There are many opportunities I can do with this logo. I wish I could do the whole branding exercise for it just like what I have done in grad school, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. I also want to spend some more time with it too see if I am going to change it again in the near future. For now, it works for me.