Launched in 2010, Canal Q is a Portuguese television channel available on two of the larger cable providers in Portugal, MEO and ZON. Canal Q focuses on original programming, much of it host-driven, in the realms of humor, entertainment, and information, and describes itself as a channel “under construction, but particularly in deconstruction”. Mainstream series and movies complete the programming. Last month, Canal Q introduced a new logo and on-air package designed in collaboration by Silvio Teixeira, HomemBala, Nuno Alves (custom typography), and Moullinex (music).
The logo was made to work as a “movie set”, so in application it represents a stage. All the decisions throughout the design process were made with the goal of having a simple and powerful “real-life” use of the logo. The stage is an open source tool that can be used by the channel’s team to further develop the brand’s identity. The process happened almost in-house with a close relationship with the Channel and a big support from its the technical team.
There is something really ugly about that “Q” but I find it irresistibly appealing. There is a blunt, unpolished quality to it that gives it the necessary quirk to represent the programming shown on the channel. Where the previous logo tried to look forward-thinking or edgy or futuristic, this one embraces the more hands-on approach and construction/deconstruction philosophy of its shows. The “canal” typography is simple and clean; obviously not too different from all the Avenir-Futura-Avant Garde typography we see a lot of, but in this particular word it looks nice.
The real charm and success of this identity is in its on-air use. There are two aspects to it: 1) The actual, information graphics with show times and descriptions and 2) the idents and channel branding, that establish the attitude of Canal Q. The graphics are sharp and quirky with a great color palette and some random shapes thrown in because, random shapes. (It reminds me of Ben Pieratt’s Hessian identity for sale.) They have an old-school feel with a twenty-tens aesthetic to it. The idents then bring the stage concept to life with a slew of humorous vignettes where the “Q” acts as a hole in the wall and things happen behind and in front of it. It’s hard not to like this and it provides a new, refreshing take on the logo-as-window approach. Overall, this identity seems to fit the channel’s ethos perfectly.