THE LOGO

justalilhype! Editorial
Words by Alan Ng & Jenkin Au
Design by Jenkin Au & Hasan Hamze

Why the hell did it took so long to come up with the logo?
Nothing worked – we worked with a lot of different local designers and artists of all kinds and we realized that nobody could create our logo except for ourselves. This isn’t to say that the artists or designers were no good, which isn’t true. It’s just that the essence of what we wanted to capture just couldn’t be conveyed to them. After that, we spent hours and hours just doodling and combining different aspects of the name. Eventually, we came to this. After we got the initial design, it still took four months to finalize because of slight modifications that we wouldn’t let pass up – things like an extension here or an alignment there.
How did the logo get drafted up? How did the design get on paper?
I have a lot of small square pieces of paper which I do a lot of random thoughts and notes on. They all come from this block – kind of like Post It Notes, but not sticky – and before I started to draw logos, I had an almost full block. Now it’s less than a quarter. There were weeks where I drew hundreds of ways of combining the “J” and the “H” together. I can’t believe that there were so many ways those two letters can come together, and to tell you the truth, I still haven’t discovered it all yet! One night, I sat down for an hour and I’ve must have used over 20 or 30 pieces of paper, each with five to six designs, front and back. Then I came upon this design. When I saw it, I had a solid feeling about it. I took a picture and sent the logo to Alan and that was it. However, that was four months ago. If it weren’t for Hasan and Alan, the logo would have never been created. Hasan was the main person for transferring it from the physical world to the digital world. Alan was my main inspiration and idea-man. Sounds like a great bromance, but to tell the truth, we rely heavily on each other’s opinions. Alan put in a lot of input into the formation of the logo.
Please introduce the final design of the logo to our readers.
The logo is circular, with a “J” and “H” put together in the middle. The concept is that the “JUST” and “HYPE” should always be together, because it’s always been just HYPE that we deal with. Next, our magazine’s name is “JUSTALILHYPE” so we are still missing the elements of “A LIL”, or “a little”. With the inclusion of the circle, it means that HYPE is closed and not open freely, thus capturing the concept of “A LIL”. This doesn’t mean that HYPE is super exclusive or anything like that – in fact, HYPE is definitely not exclusive. It relates to how HYPE will be ruined if it was a lot.
It’s also playful too because if you turn it upside down, you will see a “G”. Back during the very start of justalilhype! – and even before that – Alan and I were obsessed with GREATNESS. We always ended our emails of MSN chats with something relating to GREATNESS or whatever – that kind of stuff – just to joke around, but subconsciously, we believed in it. I guess our mentality for that is if you think anything less than pure GREATNESS, then you will never achieve true GREATNESS. This mentality has always been a key driving force for the entire project and will forever continue to be so.
Don’t you think the logo is a bit plain? I mean, it’s literally shapes and symbols combined.
No, there is HYPE in plainness. If everything was so intricate and complex, it will get old in 2 seconds. Take a look at many of today’s most famous logos: The Channel C, the NIKE tick, the N and Y on the Yankees hat. These logos are timeless for the simplicity, and of course, for the products that they deliver. A plain logo is not bound by any time period – that is TRUE HYPE.
What plans do you have in embedding this logo into the masses?
Guerrilla.
Companies nowadays have variations and slight changes of their set logo or different styles and transformations of the same logo. Do you plan to make any alternative logos based on this design?
Yes, of course. One of the best aspects of having a plain logo is that it will never be confined by color or shapes. Our logo can be represented and displayed in various ways and still hold the same meaning.
Some logos are very stunning and capture a lot of attention even when first viewed. If someone was to look at your logo and they don’t get that HYPE, what do you have to say to them?
Jenkin: I have nothing to say to those people. It’s either you get it or don’t.

Alan Ng and Jenkin Au talks about their process of creating the logo. It took 8 issues, more than half a year for them to create a solid logo. The interview contains discussion from concept to delivery of the whole logo designing process… and also the future that lies within this simple symbol.

Why the hell did it take so long to come up with the logo?

Jenkin: Nothing worked – we worked with a lot of different local designers and artists of all kinds and we realized that nobody could create our logo except for ourselves. This isn’t to say that the artists or designers were no good, which isn’t true. It’s just that the essence of what we wanted to capture just couldn’t be conveyed to them. After that, we spent hours and hours just doodling and combining different aspects of the name. Eventually, we came to this. After we got the initial design, it still took four months to finalize because of slight modifications that we wouldn’t let pass up – things like an extension here or an alignment there.

Alan: It’s like telling someone to pick a pair of shoes for you. It’s impossible. I own shoes that have sizes that range from size 9 to 10. Each shoe is made specially and there’s a certain fit to it. If it doesn’t fit, then it doesn’t, just like the logo. There were many times where we told people to take ideas that we have and make it happen, people do very nice work but it was never the perfect fit. That dragged on for a bit but we were still taking it slow because a logo is permanent – once it’s set in stone, there’s no turning back.

How did the logo get drafted up? How did the design get on paper?

Jenkin: I have a lot of small square pieces of paper which I do a lot of random thoughts and notes on. They all come from this block – kind of like Post It Notes, but not sticky – and before I started to draw logos, I had an almost full block. Now it’s less than a quarter. There were weeks where I drew hundreds of ways of combining the “J” and the “H” together. I can’t believe that there were so many ways those two letters can come together, and to tell you the truth, I still haven’t discovered it all yet! One night, I sat down for an hour and I’ve must have used over 20 or 30 pieces of paper, each with five to six designs, front and back. Then I came upon this design. When I saw it, I had a solid feeling about it. I took a picture and sent the logo to Alan and that was it. However, that was four months ago. If it weren’t for Hasan and Alan, the logo would have never been created. Hasan was the main person for transferring it from the physical world to the digital world. Alan was my main inspiration and idea-man. Sounds like a great bromance, but to tell the truth, we rely heavily on each other’s opinions. Alan put in a lot of input into the formation of the logo.

Alan: That’s right! I completed the logo at the very end. One night, we were focusing heavily in completing the logo. We went back to past designs, and stopped at the one that was the one that had the most drafts and alternations (we literally had this sucker in different colors and styles). It was this one I liked the most out of all of Jenkin’s designs but it never got the final good-to-go stamp. I thought it was missing something. I told Jenkin to round it off, blur the edges, stretch it out here and there – but it still didn’t work. At the very end, the logo was finally agreed upon by both of us because of one simple suggestion that I made: “Hey man, draw a circle around it!”

Please introduce the final design of the logo to our readers.

Jenkin: The logo is circular, with a “J” and “H” put together in the middle. The concept is that the “JUST” and “HYPE” should always be together, because it’s always been just HYPE that we deal with. Next, our magazine’s name is “JUSTALILHYPE” so we are still missing the elements of “A LIL”, or “a little”. With the inclusion of the circle, it means that HYPE is closed and not open freely, thus capturing the concept of “A LIL”. This doesn’t mean that HYPE is super exclusive or anything like that – in fact, HYPE is definitely not exclusive. It relates to how HYPE will be ruined if it was a lot.

It’s also playful too because if you turn it upside down, you will see a “G”. Back during the very start of justalilhype! – and even before that – Alan and I were obsessed with GREATNESS. We always ended our emails of MSN chats with something relating to GREATNESS or whatever – that kind of stuff – just to joke around, but subconsciously, we believed in it. I guess our mentality for that is if you think anything less than pure GREATNESS, then you will never achieve true GREATNESS. This mentality has always been a key driving force for the entire project and will forever continue to be so.

Alan: And of course it’s also up to open imagination. Whatever you see will be whatever it is.

Don’t you think the logo is a bit plain? I mean, it’s literally shapes and symbols combined.

Jenkin: No, there is HYPE in plainness. If everything was so intricate and complex, it will get old in 2 seconds. Take a look at many of today’s most famous logos: The Channel C, the NIKE tick, the N and Y on the Yankees hat. These logos are timeless for the simplicity, and of course, for the products that they deliver. A plain logo is not bound by any time period – that is TRUE HYPE.

Alan: It’s so plain that it’s a “LOVE AND HATE” thing you know? The logo sometimes irritates me, I can stare at it for hours, but at the same time, I constantly go back to it because I would forget how it looks like. There’s something special about the logo due to it’s simplicity that words can’t explain.

What plans do you have in embedding this logo into the masses?

Alan: Google: “OBEY MANIFESTO”, Shepard Fairey’s article explains it all. May the justalilhype! MANIFESTO begin…

Jenkin: Guerrilla.

Companies nowadays have variations and slight changes of their set logo or different styles and transformations of the same logo. Do you plan to make any alternative logos based on this design?

Jenkin: Yes, of course. One of the best aspects of having a plain logo is that it will never be confined by color or shapes. Our logo can be represented and displayed in various ways and still hold the same meaning.

Alan: Quote from Leonardo da Vinci “For those colours which you wish to be beautiful, always first prepare a pure white ground.” We got the black and white down but what’s coming up is going to blow your mind.

Some logos are very stunning and capture a lot of attention even when first viewed. If someone was to look at your logo and they don’t get that HYPE, what do you have to say to them?

Jenkin: I have nothing to say to those people. It’s either you get it or don’t.

Alan: Fuck that shit.