Announced this month by Hawaiian Airlines, Ohana by Hawaiian will be a new über regional airline between the islands of Moloka‘i and Lana‘i flying in adorable-looking, 48-passenger ATR42 turboprop aircrafts. The new name — the Hawaiian word for “family” — logo, and livery have been designed by renown textile and apparel designer Sig Zane (and son). Before we get to the rest of the post: my apologies for the crappy logo image above; there is no clean image anywhere of it.
The Hilo-based designers used Hawaiian Airlines’ interisland route map as a basis for the design, and incorporated three kapa patterns: piko, representing ancestor and progeny; manu, representing both a bird in flight and the prow of a canoe, the traditional form of migration; and kalo, representing family.
— Press Release
To summarize the concept as you scroll down: There are three different patterns with their own significant meanings (shown directly below) which are then applied within shapes derived from the flight routes of Hawaiian Airlines which is then flipped and made to fit unto the tail fin.
The concept is fantastic. It’s extremely local and appropriate. Everything has a reason for being there. And based on the video at the top, it’s clear that there was a lot of thought and vested passion that went into it. Unfortunately, the execution is quite poor. I mean, it’s not terrible, but based on what they were working with, it could have been so much better. The patterns are nearly impossible to decipher on the livery and the thick strokes that were applied to the route map graphic only help obfuscate the patterns. The overall texture is quite nice, it looks almost like a lizard’s skin but all the clarity that went into the thinking is nowhere to be found on the plane. The super extended wordmark doesn’t help either, it’s an extremely disproportionate, unpleasant piece of typography that has no relation to the patterns or its parent brand. Still, I would jump on one of those planes any day of the week to go to where they go.