In 1964, Japan took to the entire world stage to maintain its first Olympic Games. The Tokyo 1964 games happened to be the first year that pictograms were released for each sport as a portion of this event, to assist communicate visually into an increasingly global set of athletes and spectators.
Pictograms have become as much as a part of the Olympics and Paralympics since the all-important torch relay and the unveiling of the emblem redesign through time, and are used on everything from event tickets to signage at the Olympic Village.
Next year will visit Japan take up the mantle again at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Japanese designer Masaaki Hiromura, that participates in signage and branding design, has been tasked with creating the pictograms now around.
Hiromura drew inspiration from prior editions of the matches, such as the 1964 Tokyo edition, to make the final designs. “I have attempted to state the dynamic beauty of these athletes through these pictograms, while still respecting the legacy bequeathed by the leaders of the Japanese design industry in their designs to the Tokyo 1964 Games,” he says.
The programmer has established two sets of 50 designs (a few of the 33 sports included in the event have over one pictogram),”’free form’ and’frame kind’. The framed versions will be used for more functional purposes like on signage, maps, guidebooks and sites, whereas the unframed ones may appear on tickets, posters and other merchandise.
The blue seen in the Tokyo 2020 logo is also the major colour used at the pictograms. Five conventional Japanese colours will also be utilized during case – kurenai, ai, sakura, fuji and matsuba.
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