Elevate Martial Arts

About Project

Dancel’s Academy of Tae Kwon Do is a martial arts school based out of the Bay Area. DATKD’s core values include discipline, technique, self-defense, and character development in a fun and family-oriented atmosphere.

Live Project
Dancel's Academy of Taekwondo
May 2019

Project Overview

The goal of this project was to create a new bold, athletic, and modern logo for DATKD that represents both Tae Kwon Do and the Art of Kali. After extensive research, we decided on the three main symbols that we wanted the new logo to represent:

  • The Bamboo - represents beauty and strength and has been a personal symbol and reminder of humility and grace in Dancel's Academy
  • The Fist - also known as Moo Duk Kwan, acting as the focal point of the current DATKD Logo, can also resemble the Korean Flag
  • The Blade - symbolic of the traditional filipino martial art of Kali, "The Art of the Blade"

The Process

We explored a variety of different directions, experimenting with different ways to take the essence of the previous logo and translate it in a fresh, clean, and modern direction.

Simplicity is Key

A successful logo would be simple, clean, and memorable like the Apple logo and the Golden State Warriors logo. Keeping this in mind, I worked to find a solution that was minimalistic but carried meaning into the school's new visual identity.

Logo Construction

In order to create a clean-looking logo, we used grid lines to make sure everything was balanced, proportionate, and geometric. From the symbol to the logotype, this made sure to create a balanced and cohesive visual identity.

Geometric gridding of DATKD Symbol
Geometric gridding of DATKD Type

Beautifully Designed

Something that is attractive and interesting to look at while still simple and clean enough to be able to apply it to a wide range of different applications such as water jet cuts into metal, vinyl onto cars, and stitched onto patches. A successful logo for this project is one similar to the Nike logo, which lives on its product and visually enhances it in a stylish manner when applied.


We wanted something edgy, athletic, and bold to capture the essence of the brand. Kensmark was a perfect fit due to its strong diagonal cuts, and clean form. Kensmark is a unique and distinct font that we felt could successfully carry the character of Dancel's Academy.

Trade Gothic was a perfect sans serif font pairing. Since their initial release, the Trade Gothic® typefaces have been a staple of North American graphic design. For a time, the design was even seen as a formidable competitor to the Helvetica® family. Trade Gothic bridges the gap between the somewhat quirky grotesques of the late 19th century and the carefully modulated typefaces that began to emerge in the mid-20th century.

Color Palette

DATKD originally used a black and red color palette. We wanted to carry over the integrity of the brand and keep the traditional and classic red/black color palette. We added in a neutral silver, off-black, and off-white accents to enhance this classic color way and bring more character to the school's visual identity.

Brand Pattern

After building out a strong, geometric, and clean visual identity, we wanted to strengthen the brand cohesion by creating a pattern out of the logo to be used across a variety of applications. We incorporated the bamboo shapes from the logo into a circular design, to represent the strength of the brand throughout its visual identity.

Product Mockups

In order to showcase how the visual identity we created would live in the real world, we created a series of digital mockups on a variety of products. These mockups range from studio walls, equipment, signage, hats, kicking bags, stationery, patches etc.

How We Work

Learn more about our creative process

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Let’s create something great together