Designing a New Logo

Cyclone7 Icon In the beginning, there was the 32 x 32 Cyclone 7 icon, the only logo artwork available.  This image had been used for a number of generations of the 3D point cloud processing software, Cyclone.  With the launch of Cyclone version 8, it was high time for a new look, and new logo to accompany the powerful new 3D software update.  So began the search for a new look, a refreshed identity embodied in a graphical symbol, a new logo.

My first inclination was to explore completely new concepts and looks, showing that Cyclone’s connection to the 3D world and playing off of the cyclone, tornado, whirlwind concept.



Using Autodesk Maya and Adobe Illustrator, I tinkered with a conical theme, keeping in mind that Cyclone’s letter “C” might be worked into it.


Not being completely sold on the cones, it was time to revisit the original icon, and break down what it was about.  Outlining the artwork in Illustrator, it became clear that the logo was a pair of letter “C”s with a red dot, viewed in 3D perspective.  I decided to try and recreate this using a 3D camera view in Maya.


Here we see two C’s extruded, with a cylindrical dot placed in the center.  Getting on the right track for 3D software now!  More refinement to be done.


Here a slight rounded bevel has been added to the extrusion, and textures to the 3D geometry.  Time to explore more surface treatments, lighting and rendering.


The rendering on the left has a few more directional lights added to the Maya screen preceding it.  The rendering on the right is the result of adding a brushed metal, stainless steel style texture and bump map to the rendering.  The camera was changed to a wider angle lens setting, to force a more oblique, dynamic perspective, closely matching the original Cyclone 7 logo.  The next test would be to composite the new logo into the Cyclone 8.0 splash screen.


With this, the product management group  felt we had a winner, and were anxious to release the new software.  Upon further review, we had not yet scored a goal, and so gave it another shot along with helpful suggestions.  The final logo is brighter and easier to read and interpret, and still holds true to the 3D software roots of Cyclone.  The new logo was launched proudly with Cyclone 8.



The logo design lives on in the current Cyclone version 9.1.  The style has been adopted for branding Leica’s CloudWorx for AutoCAD software, and the JetStream high point cloud rendering system.