Loki Logo & Trailer Title Sequence: Design Notes
When I first saw the logo for Marvel’s Loki show, I found it an eyesore, just like everyone else. However, as a LEGO builder, I am often driven to figure out how to recreate shapes with bricks.
Such was the case with the K in the main Loki logo, a stylish font similar to ARB 85 Poster Script. I started fiddling with parts, starting with determining what slopes to use for the parallelogram shaped stem. The angle of the 2x1x2 slope worked well, so then I worked to determine what sorts of snot techniques I could use to flip directions. 4 1x1 brackets combined with two 1x1 technic bricks did the trick. The curved lower leg took significantly longer as I experimented with how to get the hook shape. I tried a 1x3 arch, the new 1x3 inverted arch, and countless other slopes and curves, and I’m quite proud of the shape I was able to achieve. The upper beam of the K was simpler, though I did use an old finger hinge to extend the length slightly. I’m really happy with how cleanly everything came together, with such minimal gaps.
Then I moved on to the I, which was only difficult because I couldn’t find enough trans green plates and tiles. The most difficult part of the L was determining the color scheme and pattern. I started with dark grey in addition to the dark green and sand green, but took it out as it began to look too busy. I procrastinated on the O, knowing that it would be most difficult, and I was right. I started with finding all the pearl gold pieces I could find and making a pile of them, so I knew what I had to work with. Attempting to use only gold parts, I designed a first draft of the O, but it was simply not clean enough. I gave in and decided to use light bluish grey and attempt to match it to the pearl gold in photoshop.
By this point I was just having too much fun with making letters, and I didn’t want to stop. I pulled up this video and scrubbed through it backwards, making each letter one at a time until I had 33 2D LEGO letters, each between 7 and 8 studs in total height. (The goal height was 19 plates, to match the first set of letters, but many letters got slightly bigger due to their design.) Many of them were fairly straightforward, but a few warrant further elaboration.
This L was a fun challenge. I quickly decided to build it in black instead of gold and experimented considerably with how to recreate all of it’s complex angles and curves. As with many of the letters, the new 1x3 inverted arch came in handy to capture some of the curves. This letter, like the first K and so many others, has different sections built at different angles, but minimizing the gap became the difficult part, accomplished here with a 1x1 bracket and a cheese slope.
One of my favorites, color wise, this O was a fun challenge with both it’s curves and it’s blotchy rainbow color scheme. Generally, in LEGO, convex curves are much easier, as seen on the outside. Concave curves are much harder, as you are mostly limited to full or half arches, nothing smaller. Thus, the inside of this O presented a challenge. A quarter of the circle is made up of a 1x6 arch, a small portion is a 1x3 inverted arch, but I had to approximate the rest with cheese slopes and plates. This one also had one of the most fun color schemes, built with Orange, Tan, Bright Light Orange, Yellow, Cool Yellow, Lime, Green, Sand Green, Dark Green, Dark Orange, Dark Red, Reddish Brown, Medium Nougat, Red, and Coral. While it isn’t perfect, I’m really happy with how well the colors blend with one another.
This K could have been much simpler, however in the source design, it appears to be shattered. Thus I made a much more complicated design solely so that there would be more seams, especially angled ones achieved through cheese slopes. I utilized the new tall 1x1 bracket twice here; it's a really nice piece!
This I was simple, however, it came together quite cleanly. The only difficult part was figuring out how to hold the top together as I had run out of 1x3 tiles in tan. 1x1 brick with studs on both sides plugged into the 1x1 technic brick worked well enough instead!
I cheated on a number of the letters, changing things in Photoshop to make them match the reference better. I added two parts to the aforementioned ornate black K that I had forgotten about when I photographed it. I removed the clips from 1x1 tiles with clips on the floral O, as I don’t own any sand green 1x1 tiles. On the multicolor O, I filled in a gap left by a headlight brick. A 1x1 technic brick would have fit here, but I couldn’t find any in Tan. Photoshop worked well enough. I removed two Apollo studs that had been connecting the two halves of the black stencil O. I removed some conspicuous studs from the neon orange O, which wouldn’t have been there if I owned more 1x1 bricks with studs on two sides in black; I had used 1x1 bricks with studs on 4 sides. Perhaps the most egregious change I made was extending the 1x6 tiles on the top and bottom of the yellow K into approx. 1x7 tiles. The 1x6 just wasn’t doing it for me. I also removed a white support tile from the icy blue I.
I did a LOT of this, color correcting nearly every letter in the set to match the reference more closely, using a combination of “Hue and Saturation” “Levels” and “Brightness and Contrast” adjustment layers. I only had to entirely change the color on a handful, shown below. One of the difficult parts of this was the color variation in the original that came from reflections and surface materials. In some, like the O featured above and the L of the final logo I opted to use multiple colors, but often I just could not get the same reflections and lighting to replicate the metallic surfaces with their beveled edges.
In order to get the perspectives correctly, I photographed them in sets of 4, then cut each letter out onto it’s own layer with the polygonal lasso tool in photoshop. I pulled in screenshots of the video behind them, and modified the colors/lighting on each letter until it matched. I pulled each letter into its own file. I also made a second monochromatic version of each letter by pulling the saturation all the way down. I loaded the video into Adobe Premiere Pro and moved forward frame by frame, overlaying the LEGO letters on top of the source ones. Because I was importing live Photoshop files, if they weren’t looking quite right, I could edit them and they would update within Premiere. I repeated this process for each of the letters. In the original, each time the letter changes, there is a split second where the letters are silver. I couldn’t get this exact look, but I included a frame or two of the monochromatic version, as that was close enough. You can’t really see them in the video, but you feel them, and I’m glad I chose to put them in.
This was a ton of work, hours and hours put into the letters and so many more into the video editing, but I’m proud of the resulting 8 second video! I had a lot of fun replicating all the fun fonts, though I doubt any of them will be all that useful outside of this context, as I don’t have more than 1 letter in any given font. I'm not going to be doing instructions for this, you can see everything in all of the models, as they are only a single stud deep. I've broken down the more complex letters here. As for the show, I really enjoyed it! I think it's taking the MCU in an interesting direction, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the next few MCU films expand on the consequences of everything that transpired.
If you liked this model, you might also enjoy another 2D build based off of graphic design from a Marvel Disney+ show: the glitchy "Please Stand By" message that leads into end credits of WandaVision.