We’re geeks and proud of it. Not to suggest that our work day isn’t productive, but we do spend an inordinate amount of time discussing video games, ogling new technology, and completing complicated algebraic manipulation on our pocket calculators (2 truths and a lie).
So it’s easy to see why we were thrilled to work on a logo re-design for Pixel Space, a self-proclaimed Geek Haven located right in the center of the Boulder startup scene. Pixel Space exists as an alternative to local area hotels, offering tech recruits a personalized rental space to call their own as they get to know Boulder and the startup companies headquartered there. We’ve been in touch with Matt Sisson, the co-founder at Pixel Space for a while now, and have had the privilege of seeing his new space as he revamps it into the geekiest (and therefore, best) private rental space we’ve ever seen. Since we’ve had personal experience with the space and an inside look at his evolving vision, he asked us to take a second look at the logo and see if we could make it fit a bit better.
First, we should mention, we’re standing on the shoulders of giants here. Pixel Space’s first logo, was brilliantly designed by Gerren Lamson, who never saw the space and put something together while the founder’s idea was still in its infancy. We couldn’t have made the progress we did without his original work. Hashtag - Shout Out.
For this project, as with all of our branding projects, we followed a 4-step process, Discovery, Concept, Creative, and Review.
The way we see it, the discovery phase is the most important part of our process. Digging into the values and purpose of our client’s businesses and organizations is the only way we’re able to deliver creative work that effectively communicates our client’s messages. In this case we focused on a couple of key messages we picked up from the founders of Pixel Space:
Pixel Space has been built as two things:
- A home away from home, a private place to relax and feel comfortable (geek or not).
- A community hub - at the center of the startup scene in Boulder; connecting recruits to the resources they might need like coffee shops, working spaces, pubs, transportation and career connections.
Our concept ended up being pretty simple. We focused in on the idea of the Pixel itself - that smallest of spaces that we fill up with big ideas; the building blocks of the past three decades and the foundation of the future.
Technically, pixels are tiny intersections where data is turned into a visual reality. A similar thing could be said about Pixel Space - it’s a small space where ideas, people, and dreams intersect and become reality. We decided to focus in on that idea - the intersection, and what better way to do that, then to highlight the most prominent (in our opinion) feature of the word pixel: the “X”. In this case, X marks the space - Pixel Space, the center of all things “startup” in Boulder.
One of the critiques we had about the previous design was that Pixel Space seemed like an intimate, personal brand, and the previous logo felt larger, more intimidating than it should - a bit corporate. We attempted to simplify the logo to something more simple, approachable, and flexible for use at any of the future Pixel Space sites, no matter what the interior or exterior design might look like. Staying true to our pixel concept, we chose our fonts for its “square” features.
Our “X” icon emphasized the center pixel as a representation of where Pixel Space sits in the Boulder ecosystem. Our original concepts had a softened icon and font to keep things feeling approachable and “home-y”.
At one of the loveliest lunch meetings we’ve had at The Kitchen [Next Door] in Boulder, we presented our initial concepts to Matt. He provided us with feedback (Sharper! UPPERCASE FONTS! Ramming Speed!) and we honed in some of our original ideas to the final option below:
We’re extremely excited for Matt and Tommy’s idea to take off - if you’re in the Boulder / Denver area, make sure to stop by Pixel Space’s Open House event on Friday. If you’re a techie looking for a job, or a company looking to recruit in Boulder, get in contact with Pixel Space through their site.