Launched in 1988, Nederland 3 is one of the most popular public broadcast television channels in the Netherlands and is managed by NPO (Nederlandse Publieke Omroep, Netherlands Public Broadcasting). The channel has a double-life with morning programming aimed at children under the moniker of Zapp until 7:00 pm when it switches its demographic to teenagers and young adults and serves as a funnel for different content providers and broadcasters like VPRO, VARA, RVU, and NPS, with a range of programming that includes films, drama, and comedy (local and foreign) as well as the UEFA Champions League. A new identity and on-air system were recently designed by Amsterdam-based Dog and Pony and Woodwork Amsterdam.
Update: The logo was designed by Studio Dumbar.
The challenge for Woodwork and Dog and Pony was to find a way to refresh the channel, based on the heritage of the previous styling and literally show more in different ways. Our solution was a dynamic grid based on the logo’s shape. Where views from different angles and perspectives can be visualized in a dynamic lens framework. Just like Nederland 3, it pushes boundaries, experiments, zooms, delays and shifts focus.
The grid also determines the promo package we developed for the channel, a modular system that can incorporate any piece of content, so every second of an evening’s programming can be displayed from start to finish. The grid brings to life what’s at the heart of Nederland 3: the more people see of the world, the better they understand it. Different perspectives, innovative programming, captivating viewing, all in one place.
The old and new logos follow the same formula as the rest of the NPO family: big number inside a rounded-corner diamond shape. Clearly, diverging from that path isn’t an option and the new logo at least is now more readable as a 3 than a backwards “E”. The real success of this identity is how Woodwork and Dog and Pony have managed to take the ubiquitous shape of NPO’s aesthetic and turned it into a flexible and attractive framework to deploy the on-air package.
There is a great combination between the strict, modular grid and the rich, free-flowing layers of type and footage — it’s funny that if you turned the grid 45 degrees this would be quite bland. There are a few nice details too like the subtle shadows between diamonds that create a great sense of depth or how the rounded corner of the logo let the imagery underneath show through within the hard-angled diamond shape it sits in. Overall, this is a deceivingly simple-looking system but one that has been very well crafted and considered.