Where’s Wall-E? Pentagram aims for Pixar-level 3D in Reddit rebrand

While others are flattening their logos, Pentagram focuses on 3D character development. It also reworks a proprietary typeface to resemble speech bubble marks.

30 November 2023


Unlike some other all-singing, all-dancing mascots, Reddit’s, an alien called Snoo, has been more of a background presence in the grand scheme of the brand’s identity. The company is more known for its emphatic community members and brand language (‘subreddit’ could go five rounds with ‘tweet’ for its pervasiveness in modern language). But thanks to a recent Pentagram rebrand, Snoo has been given renewed focus with an evolved, formal 3D shape.

The overhaul has been carried out by partner Natasha Jen and team. Pentagram says Reddit came to the firm in 2022, having accumulated reams of branding materials over the years. Pentagram saw particular potential in Snoo to be a character “as iconic as Mario”.

The mascot has been lifted from the logo and rendered in 3D. “This process involved taking the existing 2D Snoo icon and rendering it in 3D, with the kind of nuanced character development that goes into designing Pixar characters,” Pentagram says. Snoo will now appear in 3D on the Reddit app icon. A menu of “emoji-like Snoos” have also been developed. The illustration language at Reddit will follow suit and conform to this style from now on.

The second major change comes typographically. Pentagram has reworked an existing Reddit typeface, Reddit Sans, so that the counter forms of lower case letters resemble speech bubbles. “Most social media sites have a commenting function, but discussion threads on Reddit contain a more genuine exchange of ideas than you’ll find elsewhere,” says a release. You can expect this conversation bubble to become “a recurring and memorable feature in Reddit’s visual communication”.

It acts as a framing device for text and images, for example. Motion also imitates the way conversations run on Reddit (the bubble can stretch into the shape of a subreddit or longer comment). Reddit’s colour palette has also been trimmed down from 100 colours to a more modest 15.

While Pentagram has taken steps to streamline systems over at Reddit, the decision to amp up personality to an almost cartoon-like degree sits at odds with the more subdued, and even harsh, direction of other social media sites lately. Pentagram says it worked with Reddit to create a cohesive set of brand methodologies “all while preserving the company’s signature sense of conviviality and joy,” the release says.

GalleryPentagram: Reddit (Copyright © Pentagram, 2023)

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Pentagram: Reddit (Copyright © Pentagram, 2023)

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About the Author

Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating from the University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, Indie magazine and design studio Evermade.

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