Art Director

Rich's Blog

Luton's Looking Luminous

Late last year, London Luton Airport (LLA) revealed a new logo and brand identity for its airport by ico Design. It is a huge improvement on what they had before, which was pretty uninspiring, and has been much applauded by designers everywhere around. 

It feels bang on-trend and is certainly a bold, colourful, bright identity that will do wonders for the airport, but I do question how appropriate some elements of the new brand identity are for an airport. For example those business cards and letterheads could have any company name on them – there is very little in the identity that relates back to an airport or Luton or London. For example, why the abstract square-based logo?

I think where the brand identity comes into its own is its use in the environment itself. The large numbered walls will add warmth and colour to a usually clinical space. The commissioned typeface and icons are soft, friendly and full of character. My favourite part is the original photography library they are building, which is inspired by street photography – "Stories from the street" they call it – rather than standard glossy travel photography.

So yes, a great piece of design with some lovely applications, but it feels to me like the process ended a little too soon and with some extra time could have still retained all the creativity, vibrancy and originality of what they have now, but could have been brought back closer to the brief – rebranding Luton, an airport.

Click the images above to see larger versions. Plus I would love to hear what you think and if you agree or disagree with my view in the comments below.

Further reading: ico Design / Creative Review / Brand New