See How They're Different: Quark Radically Revamps Its Image

New-look logo, type font and palette designed to project image of new-look Quark Inc.

New Quark Logo

It’s not your father’s Quark.

Today Quark rolled out a fresh, new look for its logo, web­site, and brands. The famil­iar water-lily has been ban­ished. Gone are the warm gold­en tones and the sedate look of its old sans-serif head­line type. From one end to the oth­er the site has been giv­en a new fresh look to go along with the cor­por­tion’s new atti­tude.
Regardless of how one feels about Quark, where it’s been, where it is, or where it’s going, the new look is worth a look. It will get a reac­tion. It already has got­ten sev­er­al, not the least in the Quark Forum’s “Sofa” Threads where dis­cus­sion is typ­i­cal­ly very live­ly and opin­ion­at­ed.

Quark's New Web Home
The new web face of Quark, Incorporated

The look seems to be going over in the pos­i­tive so far; at the time of this writ­ing the major­i­ty of the votes in Quark’s poll at its online Forums were split between “I like it” and “Not sure, but will­ing to give it a chance”.

Vadim Litvak, prin­ci­pal of easternBlock Design:

Think we can expect sea­son­al changes from Quark now? A fall for­ward line of pack­ag­ing and Xtensions per­haps? A slim­line case for the Installation CD in the Spring? Maybe they’ll next take the Abercrombie & Fitch route by pho­tograph­ing pro­duc­tion design­ers dressed in biki­ni tops and board shorts at their work­sta­tions in the Summer?

I can’t wait!

I am thrilled that QuarkXPress, the aging stal­wart of the page lay­out scene, has donned some new garb and seems to now be look­ing into a clean­er, pret­ti­er, more designer-friendly (both fash­ion and page lay­out) future.

Continue to see more screen­shots of the new look of Quark and more on what goes into it.

QuarkXPress Home Page
QuarkXPress’s Home on the new-look Quark Site

The new face of Quark projects a new dynam­ic atti­tude that gives the impres­sion that they are fit, trim, and more than ready to tack­le the Adobe insur­gency. Bright pri­ma­ry and sec­ondary col­ors and bold, assertive type char­ac­ter­ize a clear, more eas­i­ly nav­i­gat­ed inter­face. The design is very clean and ordered, with the new “Q” logo in the upper left cor­ner in all pages, upon which a click returns the user to home page.

Big Design Guns Brought To Bear, and Quark Goes Green

When you go gun­sling­ing on the main street at high noon, you bring qual­i­ty irons. Names mat­ter: Winchester, Colt, Smith & Wesson. No less so for Quark’s new look.

The new sig­na­ture styl­ized Q, for instance, was devel­oped by SicolaMartin, a unit of Young & Rubicam Brands, who saw the chance to rebrand Quark as a peak oppor­tu­ni­ty.

Steve Martin, SicolaMartin Senior VP and Executive Creative Director, as quot­ed by Quark in its press release, put it this way:

This real­ly was an incred­i­ble oppor­tu­ni­ty for us, as an agency. We spe­cial­ize in high-tech clients, so usu­al­ly we’re doing work that speaks to IT pro­fes­sion­als. To get to actu­al­ly tar­get design­ers, art direc­tors, and cre­ative pro­fes­sion­als was a real­ly fun chal­lenge for us. Not only that, but to have the free­dom to re-brand such a well-known com­pa­ny as Quark — and to cre­ate a new logo for them, as well? We were excit­ed

An addi­tion to the new look is a live­ly yellow-green which col­ors the Q and is found through­out the new design. You knew this as Pantone 368, but Pantone has giv­en it a new name: “Quark Green.”

QuarkXPress Home Page
Quark Forums Home Page

Leatrice Eiseman, exec­u­tive direc­tor of the Pantone Color Institute and renowned expert on col­or psy­chol­o­gy was quot­ed by Quark it its press release:

PANTONE 368 was the per­fect choice for an inno­v­a­tive com­pa­ny such as Quark. This yel­low green, a sym­bol of growth, is invig­o­rat­ing and revi­tal­iz­ing, and breathes new life into a brand, in addi­tion to draw­ing atten­tion to it. By embrac­ing this col­or for its new logo, Quark is giv­ing its cus­tomers the con­no­ta­tion of the con­tin­u­ing growth of ideas and con­cepts, and that it is on the edge of new tech­nolo­gies.

They've Got a New, Visual Attitude

Identity redeis­gns can go a long way toward fresh­en­ing an old brand, mak­ing it seem new in the eyes of a mar­ket that is very (some­times, too) famil­iar with a com­pa­ny and its ser­vices; it can be like a bad­ly need­ed breath of fresh air.

Quark’s image makeover is both time­ly and appro­pri­ate. In con­trast to the ‘try­ing to hard to be hip’ atti­tudes the Quark post­cards famous­ly pro­ject­ed, the new logo and iden­ti­ty exhibits a know­ing hip­ness, and the use of col­or and type make the com­pa­ny’s old web pres­ence seem almost monot­o­ne in com­par­i­son. The com­pa­ny brought big guns to bear, mak­ing an inter­est­ing, fresh new mark.

You can read Quark’s press release here.

Pariah Burke

Author, consultant, trainer, guru: Digital Publishing, ePub, InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Quark. Empowering, Informing, Connecting Creative Professionals™

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15 Responses

  1. Bill Hendricks says:

    Where’s the beef? Packaging is one thing… What does Quark real­ly have to offer that is new?


  2. Bill:

    Your com­ment comes up with a valid point.

    There are, I think, two ways to look on Quark, as they defend their turf and thi­er remain­ing mar­ket share against Adobe. One way is by what they announce and what they pro­duce. The oth­er way is by how they announce.

    Quark wants to appeal to design­ers. Designers (just for the sake of say­ing this-I’m sure I don’t need to tell you this) are seen as a hip, “with-it” group, in tune with fash­ion in some essen­tial way. If your image is seen as dat­ed, your cred­i­bil­i­ty suf­fers and there is an air of tired­ness about you.

    Quark’s graph­ic pre­sen­ta­tion, up until now, struck me as qui­et, com­posed, and “same”. The graph­ic treat­ment was one they had been using for years, and was doing so at the time they were hint­ing at excit­ing new fea­tures and acknowl­edg­ing the chal­lenge of InDesign. I think they were look­ing for a rel­e­vant, edgy angle–that’s why we had the Postcards.

    The Postcards missed the mark, remark­ably. My take on this is that they have, if not learned the les­son of the error of the mes­sage, at least learned the les­son of dial­ing it back a bit. This new pre­sen­ta­tion works on the cool and hip lev­el. I, who have announced by bias more than once, find it appeal­ing and refresh­ing.

    Of course, pub­lic face is one thing. Now they have to fol­low up with actu­al results. Whenever XPress V7 is rolled out (when­ev­er that may be), it’s got to be a cred­i­ble con­tender against InDesign. No mat­ter what it offers, those offer­ings have got to not only hang on to the waver­ers (those think­ing of mov­ing to Adobe), and not only make its loy­al cus­tomers feel jus­ti­fied in main­tain­ing thi­er invest­ment, but also make sat­is­fied InDesign refugees from Quark think twice about that deci­sion.

    A rebrand­ing such as this makes it more doable for Quark. But they still have to deliv­er on the promise that is V7.

    This new look may turn out to be lip­stick on a pig, or it may turn out to be the jew­el­ry on a beau­ty queen. That depends on V7. but as a design evo­lu­tion it, in and of itself, is a breath of fresh air to Quark’s look, time­ly and need­ed.

  3. Rick says:

    I’t nice to see they are design­ing the site with good markup, but that menu is ter­ri­ble. I hate it when com­pa­nies build menus with drop­downs that are hard to get to. I do, how­ev­er, like the new design. The green Q looks real­ly cool.
    Still… I hate Quark, and I real­ly wish it would go away.

  4. http://​www​.macmerc​.com/​a​r​t​i​c​l​e​.​p​h​p​?​s​i​d=2628

    Visitors to Quark’s web site yes­ter­day got a bit of a sur­prise. Quark has changed its logo, changed its web site and, well, that’s about it. Everything else is the same. Except that, as report­ed on MetaFilter, Quark’s new logo looks just like the one for The Scottish Arts Council.


  5. Sam you said that Quark’s revamp is both time­ly and appro­pri­ate. It cer­tain­ly is appro­pri­ate, but I don’t think it is very time­ly. Quark should have done this long ago and they should release QuarkXPress 7 quite fast before too many peo­ple switch to InDesign.

    I have heard many peo­ple say­ing they are mak­ing the switch from Quark to InDesign, yet I heard none say­ing they are switch­ing from InDesign to Quark.

  6. Skyline says:

    Good point Elisabetta. I have NEVER met or heard about a SINGLE PERSON who even thought about switch­ing from InDesign to Quark.

    The next ver­sion of Quark is going to have to be more than an equal of InDesign, it is going to have to be light years ahead of it. Otherwise, Quark is burnt toast. It’s already toast, it will be BURNT toast.

  7. Elisabetta:

    I see and acknowl­edge your point. Quark is late off the blocks in a great many ways, from upgrad­ing to Mac OS X to final­ly ver­sion­ing up the appli­ca­tion.

    I ought to qual­i­fy what I mean by time­ly. The way I see it, Extreme Makeover:Quark Editionâ„¢ is time­ly, but only inso­far as the con­text they are work­ing in…that is to say, con­sid­er­ing they haven’t upgrad­ed thi­er image along with the appli­ca­tion, and giv­en that the release of V7 is con­tiual­ly inti­mat­ed as being ‘immi­nent’, time was ripe for an updat­ing of thi­er image. Better late, as they say, than nev­er.

    In the greater con­text of the last few years of design soft­ware devel­op­ments, though, they are very late on this image update, and in that wise I quite agree with you.

  8. Joe Reil says:

    Publishing leader Quark fur­ther wows cus­tomers and silences crit­ics with a new font

    DENVER - September 16, 2005 - There’s yet anoth­er new sym­bol of the friend­ly new Quark. In addi­tion to the new logo announced late last week Quark has select­ed a new font for use in the appli­ca­tion menus and user man­u­als for it’s upcom­ing Quark 7.0 release.

    “Quark has under­gone many changes, start­ing with our inno­v­a­tive new logo,” said act­ing pres­i­dent Linda Chase. “We are proud to fol­low that suc­cess up with the selec­tion of a new font to fur­ther iden­ti­fy and solid­i­fy the Quark brand in the hearts and minds of our customers.”

    Quark Funnies
    In sup­port of the launch of Quark’s new brand iden­ti­ty, TypeWhereHouse Inc., the glob­al author­i­ty on fonts and the lead­ing font foundry for the design indus­try, has redubbed “Comic Sans” as “Quark Funnies.”

    According to Beatrice Wiseman, exec­u­tive direc­tor of the TypeWhereHouse Font Institute, renowned font psy­chol­o­gist, and author of thirty-five books on fonts, “Comic Sans was the per­fect choice for an inno­v­a­tive com­pa­ny such as Quark. This font, based on the let­ter­ing in dai­ly com­ic strips and month­ly com­ic books alike is a per­fect sym­bol for the new Quark in the eyes of it’s many cus­tomers, crit­ics and sup­port­ers. As a joke in it’s field.”

    Beatrice went on, “Comic Sans just screamed Quark to me. I was look­ing for some­thing that would take Quark in a com­plete­ly new direc­tion — a font that was friend­ly and invit­ing, while also being excit­ing and dynam­ic and fur­ther some­thing that would clear­ly and solid­ly iden­ti­fy Quark in the mar­ket. “The more I looked at the font, the more it came to rep­re­sent so many things that Quark has gone through: reju­ve­na­tion, growth, and rebirth and final­ly to it’s sta­tus now as a joke in it’s own indus­try. It just seemed to work.”

  9. Joe:

    Beautiful. You have the press release tone down so well that I almost believed you at first. By the end I was laugh­ing out loud.

  10. maxfinis says:

    Joe & Samuel:

    That was so well done, I was actu­al­ly googling type­where­house before I real­ized what an idiot I am.

  11. Joe Reil says:

    Thanks for the com­ments and glad it was enjoyed. I did use the actu­al press release for inspi­ra­tion and a lot of what is in mine is just sub­tle reword­ings of the actu­al press release… Names changed to pro­tect the innonence of Quark. My only regret is I could­n’t think of a bet­ter name for the “new” font. ;)

  12. Sam, you said:

    I ought to qual­i­fy what I mean by time­ly. The way I see it, Extreme Makeover:Quark Editionâ„¢ is time­ly, but only inso­far as the con­text they are work­ing in…that is to say, con­sid­er­ing they haven’t upgrad­ed thi­er image along with the appli­ca­tion, and giv­en that the release of V7 is con­tiual­ly inti­mat­ed as being ‘imminent’, time was ripe for an updat­ing of thi­er image. Better late, as they say, than nev­er.

  13. Sorry, I had a prob­lem with the com­ment form. I meant to say that I see what you mean with the part I just quot­ed with the pre­vi­ous com­ment.

  14. Pancake says:

    The Flat ver­sion works well but the beveled night­mare of a logo ver­sion is one of the worst I have seen. Seems like some­body just recent­ly dis­cov­ered the bev­el tool in pho­to­shop. They need to stick with the flat ver­sion.

  1. 16 March 2006

    […] The 2005 mod­el, while strong and styl­ish in its sim­plic­i­ty, met with deri­sion and accu­sa­tions of pla­gia­rism. As the cre­ative com­mu­ni­ty instant­ly point­ed out, that ver­sion bore a strong resem­blance to a hand­ful of exist­ing logos, and, but for its col­or, was iden­ti­cal to the logo of the Scottish Arts Council, who used the cir­cu­lar glyph with the bottom-right point to rep­re­sent a low­er­case a where Quark’s used the same glyph for a cap­i­tal Q. The sim­i­lar­i­ties, how­ev­er, were acci­den­tal; Quark’s brand­ing agency, SicolaMartin, had missed the marks of the Scottish Arts Council, the Designers Network, Alcone, and oth­ers dur­ing their trade­mark research. Despite Quark’s own jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for the con­fu­sion, as well as objec­tive expla­na­tions of how such a sit­u­a­tion may occur from inde­pen­dent media Quark VS InDesign​.com and Creativepro​.com, the September 2005 Quark logo missed the mark with design­ers. The September 2005 Quark logo. […]