Miscellaneous observations from an educational communicator’s perspective

Off-track logo Capital Off-Track Betting’s logo caught my eye on a recent visit to New York. Why? I think there are a number of problems—starting with the unnecessary fussiness and clutter of shapes that attempt to define and separate the horse from the letterforms. There are other clumsy shapes created by the horse’s nose jutting into the “t.” And why is the “t” lower case when it’s upper case in the organization’s name?

The shape of the horse emerging from the letterforms is most problematic. Racing is a powerful forward movement of the horse on the track. Here, the curve of the shape causes the eye to move backward, going against the natural flow of the sport. Correcting the awkward rendering is only part of the problem. The bigger challenge is to design a mark that faithfully portrays the essence of the organization it represents.