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Composition

Our composition system is elegant in its sheer simplicity of use—plus, it creates a subtle “U” wherever it appears. By defining the grid based on the logo (and exploring how columns scale across compositions of various sizes), the system stays flexible and beyond easy to apply. We’ve looked at different frame variants, how type works in different layouts, and have wire-framed our dynamic composition 
web tool to prepare for the initial build.

Elements

Layout and U-frame

Grid guidance

Text and image

Text and image

Our composition story

The U-frame was conceived by extending the bit up, which allows the negative space to create a supportive U-frame.

The bit

U

U, optimized for content

The U-frame

The U-frame

Uber Move (our typeface), 4 weights

Light

Regular

Medium

Bold

U-frame, 3 weights

There is no light U-frame in the brand system

Regular

Medium

Bold

Compositional spectrum

No U-frame, no logo (full-bleed)

No U-frame (full-bleed)

Regular U-frame

Medium U-frame

Bold U-frame populated

Bold U-frame

U-frame guidance

Format

If your composition is very tall and skinny or very short and wide (like some banner ads), the U-frame will not work. The more real estate you have to play with, the more successful the U-frame will be.

Context

Make sure that the context for your U-frame will provide sufficient contrast. For instance, if the composition is sitting on a black background, the U-frame should be white, or filled with a lighter color or image (otherwise the shape will disappear).

Production

For printed assets: the U-frame requires a bleed and the ability to trim. If you are using a standard office printer and are unable to trim the final print, do not use the U-frame.

Content

The U-frame is generative and provides layout flexibility.

Layout

We have 4 layout variations. Content and format dictate which layout to use.

1. Bold U-frame

2. Medium U-frame

3. Regular U-frame

4. Full-bleed composition

Exceptional circumstances

In extreme instances when the formats are extended across print and digital applications, use these frame variants.

5a. Split left

5b. Split right

6a. Extended U-frame left

6b Extended U-frame right

Grid setup

Column breakdown

3-column

Banner ad

4-column

Banner ad | Event signage

6-column

9-column

16:9 presentation | All A sizes (horizontal) | Legal (horizontal) | Tabloid (horizontal) | Letter (horizontal)

12-column

Banner ad

No U-frame (full bleed)

Base unit = 1U

Regular U-frame

Basic grid + 2× base unit padding

Base unit = 1U

Regular U-frame = 2U

Medium U-frame

Basic grid + 3× base unit padding

Base unit = 1U

Medium U-frame = 3U

Bold U-frame

Basic grid + 4x base unit padding

Base unit = 1U

Bold U-frame = 4U

Full-bleed grid setup

1. Define columns

Based on the column breakdown, determine the number of columns that makes the most sense for your composition. For a 16:9 presentation format, 
a 9-column grid works best.

2. Define margins

Once the columns are established, divide the width of one column into 3 even parts. 1/3 of the column width = margin and base unit width.

3. Equal margins on all sides

Apply the 1/3-column margin to the top, right, bottom, and left of the composition.

4. Define gutters

Once the margins are established, divide the width of the margin into 2 even parts. 1/2 of the margin width = the gutter width.

5. Apply gutters

The gutter width should be consistent across the composition.

6. Define rows (optional)

Adjust the baseline grid in InDesign. The grid should be relative to margin top, and the increment should match the leading of the smallest type in the composition (if it contains 12/14 point type, the baseline grid should start at the top margin and have a gridline each 14 points).

7. Complete composition

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Regular U-frame setup

1. Start with basic frame setup

Refer to previous section

2. Define base unit (margin width)

The base unit = the basic grid margin width.

3. Define inner frame margin (3× base unit)

Multiply the base unit width by 3.

4. Apply new margin (right, bottom, and left)

Apply the 3× margin width to the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition. Do not adjust the top margin.

5. Establish content padding (1x base unit)

Once the new margins are established, create content padding by adding one base unit of padding to the outside of the margins on the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition.

6. Apply content padding

The padding should be even on all sides.

7. Fill U-frame and inset

8. Complete composition

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Medium U-frame setup

1. Start with basic frame setup

Refer to previous section.

2. Define base unit (margin width)

The base unit = the basic grid margin width.

3. Define inner frame margin (4× base unit)

Multiply the base unit width by 4.

4. Apply new margin (right, bottom, and left)

Apply the 4× margin width to the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition. Do not adjust the top margin.

5. Establish content padding (1x base unit)

Once the new margins are established, create content padding by adding one base unit of padding to the outside of the margins on the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition.

6. Apply content padding

The padding should be even on all sides.

7. Fill U-frame and inset

8. Complete composition

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Bold U-frame setup

1. Start with basic frame setup

Refer to previous section.

2. Define base unit (margin width)

The base unit = the basic grid margin width.

3. Define inner frame margin (5× base unit)

Multiply the base unit width by 5.

4. Apply new margin (right, bottom, and left)

Apply the 5× margin width to the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition. Do not adjust the top margin.

5. Establish content padding (1x base unit)

Once the new margins are established, create content padding by adding one base unit of padding to the outside of the margins on the right, bottom, and left sides of your composition.

6. Apply content padding

The padding should be even on all sides.

7. Fill U-frame and inset

8. Complete composition

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Split frame setup

1. Define columns

Based on the column breakdown, determine the number of columns that makes the most sense for your composition. For a 16:9 presentation format, 
a 9-column grid works best.

2. Define margins

Once the columns are established, divide the width of one column into 3 even parts. 1/3 of the column width = the margin width.

3. Equal margins on all sides

Apply the 1/3 column margin to the top, right, bottom, and left of the composition.

4. Define gutters

The margin width is your new gutter width.

5. Apply gutters

The gutter width should be consistent across the composition.

6. Snap image block to left or right margin

Apply the 1/2 margin gutters to the composition. The gutter width should be consistent across the composition.

7a. Complete composition

Obey the margins and gutters when placing text into the composition. The logo should snap to the margin (as it does with the basic grid).

7b. Complete composition (continued)

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Extended U-frame setup

1. Start with regular U-frame setup

Do not use the medium or bold U-frame in an extended U-frame composition.

2. Establish new gutter width (1x base unit)

The gutters should be the same width as the margins.

3. Snap image block to left or right margin

The image block can sit on either the left or the right side, but it should snap to the regular U-frame grid margins. Obey the margins and gutters when placing text into the composition.

4a. Complete composition

The logo should snap to the bottom of the image block (not the inset margin).

4b. Complete composition (continued)

Logo height = base unit height; headline cap height = 1.5× base unit height; subhead = 1/2 of the headline point size.

Guidance

Image on image

Image-on-image compositions are designed to tell deeper visual stories. Imagery used in the U-frame should be simple and never complex or distracting. Background images should be textural to allow the image in the frame to pop.

A -> B

Telling stories of someone’s journey from one place to another

Different perspectives

Showing different perspectives or directions of the same event

Origin stories

Giving textural reference to someone’s place of origin

Image-on-image guidance

Do not combine or use complex images together.

Avoid using the same image for both U-frame and inset.

Avoid combining images that don’t match or are not associated with each other.

Do not use 2 or more images with the same color to avoid the U-frame becoming undistinguishable.

Do not crop important elements in the image that otherwise provide context or use an image for a U-frame that should be used as an inset image.

Avoid using similar images that don’t demonstrate a strong enough story to use image-on-image compositions.

Composition

Bold U-frame

Medium U-frame

Regular U-frame

Split U-frame

Full-bleed U-frame

Composition guidance

Avoid using the U-frame in contexts without sufficient contrast.

Do not rotate the U-frame (it will no longer resemble a U).

Do not round the corners of the U-frame.

Do not create uneven U-frames; at least 2 sides must be equal. (The partial U-frame is the exception to this rule.)

Do not use multiple U-frames within a composition.

Do not add special effects to the U-frame.

Do not break the U-frame.

Do not use the U-frame if full-bleed is not possible.

Applications

Summary

01

Content dictates the format

02

Consistent experience

03

Embrace the power of black and white