Passport 2017 App and Brand

In 2016 I led the brand and product design for Passport Twenty-Seventeen, a bilingual event discovery app and website to inspire Canadians to engage with events and cultural touchstones during our sesquicentennial.


  • Product Strategy
  • UX Design
  • Brand Strategy
  • Creative Direction
  • Visual Design

How it worked

Inspired by the passports given to visitors at Expo 67 in Montreal, the app allowed users to collect stamps for attending cultural events across the country, the same way visitors to Expo 67 would at the worlds fair pavilions.

During a quick on boarding process, the app collected users interests and stored them against a Facebook profile, which users could optionally use for logging into the app. It tracked interactions for rewards, and allowed users to keep a list of favourite articles and events.

Once inside the user was presented with stories and events matched to the interests they selected. It also presented editorially curated stories, cultural landmarks, events, and official sesquicentennial celebrations.

Discover screen — A list of horizontal lists that present editorially directed and persona-matched stories and events

How we designed the brand and visual language

We wanted our brand to invoke Canadian modernist graphic design from the 1970’s, while keeping an obvious tie to the event discovery function the app is meant to fulfil.

Our first passes at the brand mark / app icon was to create a logo that was at once a ‘p’ for passport, a map pin and incorporated the Maple Leaf and triband.

In order to steer away from the cliché ridden world of event app branding, we moved away from the map pin to a more explicit ‘p’. The final mark designed by Scott Rankin is where we arrived.

Neue Haas Grotesk was used as the default font for headers and data and we adopted Publico Text for body copy.

Key considerations in the selection of these fonts were the general readability on screen and identical x-heights for continuity.

To facilitate the game / reward engine facet of the app, we engaged Doublenaut to conceptualize and draw the stamps for the categories we identified for the reward system in the app.