Gabe Ferreira devises a coffee and code-inspired identity for coffee roasting software Palette
Palette are a tech company whose products and technology enable both coffee professionals and enthusiasts to roast their beans and then analyse their output. Looking for a fitting visual identity, the team turned to multidisciplinary artist and designer Gabe Ferreira. As a result, the San Francisco resident has blended a coffee-inspired palette with a playful symbol that resembles a coffee mug – made by horizontally extending the initial of the brand’s name. In a creative nod to the developers behind Palette’s magic, as well as the code used for their products, Ferreira ensured that the logo could be rendered in code with a simple section (div) of HTML and a few lines of CSS.
Aiming to separate Palette from other tech companies, “who prefer to use geometric sans serif fonts,” Ferreira opted for Akkurat as the leading typeface. “Given that Palette essentially creates software for coffee roasters,” he tells us, explaining his thinking, “the mechanical and precise nature of Akkurat matched that feeling perfectly in my opinion.” The designer notes that Akkurat’s modified features, most notably a ligature in the wordmark, arrived as a result of problem-solving. “The ‘Pa’ ligature was the best way I could find to deal with the awkward white space that would have resulted from a standard ‘Pa’ combination,” he reveals. Ferreira had considered an all-lowercase ‘palette’ as the wordmark, however, he decided against it, as “all-lowercase logotypes have become ubiquitous” in the tech space. “Having an uppercase ‘P’ also facilitates the horizontal lockup between the symbol and the text,” he points out.
Whilst coffee may not initially conjure a vibrant rainbow of colour, Ferreira looked to the many hues of a bean’s life as a source of inspiration. The warm, organic, yet bright palette is derived from the coffee’s production process, from harvest to roast. “In fact,” Ferreira adds, “the name ‘Palette’ was chosen for the same reason.”
As a kind gesture that transforms the 2D into 3D, a set of mugs – in the shape of Palette’s logo and finished in the brand’s colours – were produced and distributed to the Palette team as a thank you gift.