Monopo London’s abstract identity for sports brand Yonex mirrors the feeling of using its Arcsaber badminton racquet
Creating a symbolic system that took direct influence from the racquet, the London-based studio also created a mysterious and intriguing campaign.
- Olivia Hingley
- 7 March 2022
If there is one thing that the studio Monopo London understands, it’s that “creating an identity that intersects functionality and craft is always a challenge”. But, for the Japanese sports brand Yonex, the studio rose to the challenge, executing a visual identity and campaign for the release of its new Arcsaber 11 racquet with style.
Taking direct inspiration from the racquet itself, the studio developed various abstract graphic shapes, to convey “the shuttle-hold technology and the distinctive feel of hitting a shuttle with an Arcsaber racquet”. Approaching the brief innovatively, Monopo used the lines of the racquet as a grid, where each intersection becomes a circular anchor point; “the string bed became a canvas upon which we built the identity and launch campaign”. Keeping a consistent red, black and grey tricolour theme and sharp edge to typography, the various design elements materialised into a sharp, sophisticated and futuristic identity.
Looking to widely disseminate the new Arcsaber racquet, but still give it a sense of mystery, Monopo also devised a layered publicity approach. Weaving and distorting its staple graphic shapes – effectively applied in a series of animated motion graphic trailers – the team formed “a graphic system from which the different messages could be told; from mysterious symbolism to drive intrigue, to educational content”.
Through this graphic system, the studio looked to “garner the right kind of attention” and so developed a whole range of products, from posters, apparel, accessories and social media stickers. Monopo also selected a number of pro-athletes who posted teasers on its social media channels to create a sense of curiosity and excitement within the badminton community and Yonex’s cult-following. And, alongside all of these powerful visual elements, the team also devised an impactful new tagline for the product – “Locked. Ready. Launch.”
Monopo London: ARCSABER 11 Poster (Copyright © Monopo London, 2022)
About the Author
Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.