Platform’s stoic identity for Future Co. reflects the sportswear brand’s forward-thinking ethos
Auckland-based sportswear brand Future Co. does what it says on the tin, looking to the set standard for high-performance engineered garments while committing to 100% sustainability. Needing an identity to mirror their progressive and innovative approach, they called upon design studio and fellow Aucklanders Platform to deliver the goods; resulting in a slick and sophisticated visual identity system.
Developed under the brand’s tri-pillar ethos of ‘Performance, Innovation and Environment,’ the identity is led by bespoke symbols illustrating each element. Recalling the strong-minded personality of Future Co.’s founder Oz, designer Aitken Hawkins tells us, “Oz was constantly pushing for sustainable materials over conventional ones,” explaining the logical decision to externally exhibit their core values. “The symbols are the visual representation of this,” Hawkins remarks, “they emerge when we're wanting to put focus into something, or highlight an aspect of the pillars and speak louder through association,” he adds, grounding the identity with a stoic yet characterful device.
Bolstering this bold stoicism is the muted use of colour, with Platform utilising a range of dark, neutral colours throughout. “Colour is an emotive agent for any brand,” Hawkins tells us, “using colour went against what Future Co. stands for,” he adds, opting to avoid any colourful expression and instead take a technological approach to its application. “The colour palette is a neutral selection,” he continues, “again based on a percentile usage.”
Reflecting on the influences that led to Future Co.’s custom wordmark, Hawkins tells us “we began this project like most things, casting our net wide and diving deep into any and every non-relevant piece of information,” landing on a focus driven by historical industrial and manufacturing marks. “They have a composed utilitarian image to them,” he explains, “information not intended for consumers but rather for technicians.” This pragmatic and informational approach led to a powerful wordmark that feels at home both in the future they look to shape and a sci-fi world of spaceship truckers.
With this in mind, the identity’s secondary typefaces are practical, used in an effort to efficiently communicate information rather than express emotion – opting for Pangram Pangram’s Supply Mono and Klim Type Foundry’s Untitled Sans as the brand’s supporting act. Combining the industrial architecture of Supply Mono with Untitled Sans’ subtlety, Hawkins describes how the type’s composition and graphic relationship further pursue the identity’s systematic attitude. “The hierarchy of headers work on a rigid system of quarters,” he concludes, “giving the identity a look and feel of precision,” again referencing the notion of relatable, retro-nostalgic and, fundamentally, cool factory-made goods.