Memorial Day Observance

Strategic Communications and Brand Management

University Relation and Advancement

Valera Hall 125
18111 Nordhoff Street Northridge, CA 91330-8242

Phone: (818) 677-2130

Send email

Need approved logos, typefaces or graphic elements or additional information? Contact Kevin Lizarraga, Director of University Marketing.

Design Guidelines


Stationery should be consistent campuswide. Please note the specific placement of each element. The official wordmark is placed prominently on the upper-left corner of each stationery item. The address block is left-aligned at the bottom. On the envelope, the department, college and address block is placed below the wordmark, noting the required area of isolation. On the business card, the individual’s name and degree(s) are placed beneath the wordmark. The areas of affiliation and college are left-aligned above the contact information. The secondary mark may be used on the reverse side of the business card.


This image shows an example of a sub-identity letterhead.


CSUN Red and Black are the “hero colors.” As such they should always play an important role on the page. Whether it’s highlighting the message or the most used color in a layout, these colors could be applied in various ways. Always use both colors for every audience and on all brand materials.



Pantone 186C
C:11 M:100 Y:90 K:2
R:210 G:32 B:48
Web: #D22030


C:75 M:68 Y:67 K:90
R:0 G:0 B:0
Web: #000000


You may use the secondary colors as background colors or “highlight” moments on a page. Pick and choose which colors work best for your layout. You do not need to use every secondary color on a spread. At times you may choose to not use any secondary colors. They are only to help with visibility on a page when red, black and white become too limiting.


Secondary Red

Pantone 7417
C:4 M:86 Y:87 K:1
R:230 G:75 B:54
Web: #e64b36

Cool Grey 11

C:65 M:57 Y:52 K:29
R:85 G:86 B:90
Web: #55565a

Medium Grey Cool Grey 6

C:34 M:29 Y:29 K:0
R:171 G:169 B:169
Web: #a9aba9

Light Grey

Pantone 441
C:26 M:16 Y:20 K:0
R:189 G:197 B:195
Web: #bec6c3


This palette is designed to only be used in subtle areas that complement the Primary CSUN Red and Black and secondary palette. Often only a small amount is needed and should never over power the primary palette. These colors often work good in overlay moments with photography or mixed in a gradient with the primary palette. Each color’s tint can be reduced to get the desired mix that works best with the Primary CSUN colors.


Sea Green

Pantone 3252
C:47 M:0 Y:24 K:0
R:130 G:206 B:201
Web: #82cec9


Pantone 7451
C:43 M:31 Y:2 K:0
R:146 G:161 B:205
Web: #92a1cd

Golden Yellow

Pantone 136
C:1 M:27 Y:76 K:0
R:253 G:191 B:86
Web: #fdbf56


Pantone 526
C:77 M:82 Y:9 K:1
R:91 G:76 B:147
Web: #5b4c93


Pantone 2985
C:71 M:18 Y:1 K:0
R:44 G:165 B:218
Web: #2ca5da


Pantone 7527
C:15 M:13 Y:21 K:0
R:216 G:210 B:196
Web: #d8d2c4


If you would like, you may use as few as three colors, the primary CSUN red and black and a neutral color (or white). Using red as the main background color will help give your design the bold CSUN pride that it needs, especially applicable for undergrad, graduate and alumni audiences.

The color palette with athletics uses both primary and secondary reds as an overall gradient, which implies movement and pulse. The other secondary colors used are cream and tan, helping give it a warm, life-like quality.

Above is an example of using the primary colors as accent colors. The red rise arrow, paired with the secondary and tertiary palette, acts as an indicator to guide the reader towards the main message.

This example shows how a blending of the tertiary colors can serve as a basis for a layout and will allow for the main palette to stand out on top.


Do not tint or screen back the primary CSUN red. To ensure the message is clearly readable, avoid using tone on tone colors.

Do not use the old red (PMS 201) in the color palette. Avoid using it on anything from athletics to internal marketing materials.

The secondary and tertiary colors should only be used to support the primary CSUN palette. When creating layouts, establish the primary colors first, then when necessary, use the additional palettes.


Like colors and imagery, fonts play an important role in the visual aspects of the university’s identity. The only typefaces that should be used moving forward are those listed below. It’s important to keep the brand unified by using ATC Overlook and FS Lola whenever possible. Especially on all outward-facing marketing or advertising.


ATC Overlook should primarily be used for headline treatments. Only use the weights listed below. Using bolder weights will help text feel more like a headline.

Typography Headline Guidlines


FS Lola should only be used occasionally for headline treatments. It would be best used when variation is needed for larger combination headlines. It may also be used for perspective type treatments.

Subhead Guidelines


Apex Serif should be used for body copy. This serif pairs well with ATC Overlook and FS Lola, yet allows greater readability in long form copy. Do not use anything too bold or too light, otherwise it will not be easily readable. It should also be set at a size with reasonable leading so that it can be read in large blocks.

Body Copy Guidelines


ATC Overlook can also be used for secondary body copy. It can be used to set sections apart from the main copy such as in sidebars, pull quotes and subheads.

Secondary Body Copy Guidelines


If for any reason the fonts ATC Outlook and FS Lola are not available to you, use Helvetica and Georgia as alternate options. These fonts are packaged with the Microsoft Office suite.


Alternate Headline Option


Alternate Body Copy Option


Alternate Body Copy Guideline


Occasionally, a script font can be used for a more formal impression on communications such as a Gala Invitation.

Lavendar font example.


This secondary script font can be used in headline lockups to separate two sections of a line. This works well with connecting words such as “yet” and “and.”

Voltage font example.


There are a few different ways to treat headlines that may range from complex to simple. Please note the examples for each headline application below.

Typography Headline Guidlines

Digital Headlines

When the headline is used as the main image, use a variety of sizes, weights, etc. to create something that’s visually appealing and calls attention. You may also use light shadows and letter inlines (as shown in “100”) to give the design a 3D effect.

Typography Headline Guidlines

Standard Headlines

For shorter headlines, use a simpler variation of fonts and weights. Scale and italicizing can also be used to emphasize certain words.

Typography Headline Guidlines

Perspective Headlines

At times, vertical treatments can be used to call out specific words (like “work force” shown above). This could also be combined with perspective treatments, to make the type appear to be on a different plane, moving upward. Only use this application when it is the main image on the layout.

Typography Headline Guidlines

Athletic Headlines

For Athletics only, use this layered type treatment to provide a bold aesthetic. The layers underneath should be similar to those shown in the example—outlined letters and solid letters with 50% opacity applied.


Legibility should always be the primary objective of body copy. Ensure body copy is always readable in the space that it occupies.

Body Copy Treatments

Longer sections of copy should utilize the Apex Serif family to ensure maximum readability. Break up long sections of copy with graphics or text such as quotes in order to keep the page engaging.

Body Copy Treatments

As a framing device, when appropriate, use a vertical line on left justified body copy that comes from the top (preferred) or bottom of the page.

Body Copy Treatments

You can also use italicized type slanted upward. Use this style on callouts and quotes, paired with slanted graphic elements.


Things to Avoid In Typography

Do not use perspective type treatments that lead downward.

Things to Avoid In Typography

Do not use brand elements and type treatments directly over the subject matter.

Things to Avoid In Typography

Ensure that proper spacing is used in all headline treatments.

Things to Avoid In Typography

Avoid using thin type for headline treatments. The identity of CSUN is bold and strong, not delicate.


The Rise ArrowThe Rise Arrow TreatmentRise Arrow PatternsGraphic Containers


The rise arrow can be used to separate two sections of a layout to call attention to specific headlines or sections of copy by guiding the reader’s eye.

The arrow can be duplicated and layered in ways that help create dimension in the space.

It can also be treated as a three-dimensional object on a page when other dimensional objects are projecting up from it.


This page shows some examples of how the Rise Arrow patterns can be used in layout.

The Rise Arrow could also be used as a subtle background pattern, scaled and sized in various ways. This also tends to work with vibrant color gradients.

When appropriate, the arrow pattern can integrate into the type treatment.

Instead of using the 3D Rise Arrow as a pattern, it could also be fragmented and applied in an organic way. In this example, each rise arrow is split in half and at about 40% opacity with gradients applied. This works great with perspective typography.


This is another example of the rise arrow being fragmented to imply motion. It works best with images that show movement.

Use thin lines that mimic the rise arrow and enclose or book-end vertical headlines.

In some cases, the graphic could extend out in both directions to act as a container for certain imagery. This works best with portraiture.

Use of subtle and tasteful dimension in background elements can help differentiate type as well as other content.


The visual elements of rise can displayed in various ways. One way is by using dimension to give the appearance of certain shapes floating off the page. In this case the rise shape is splitting the image in two parts. The portion of the image in the rise shape is slightly lifted by the use of a drop shadow and slightly nudging the photo to show more perspective.

Dimension can also be created when using large headline moments. From creating a hard dimension of the letter forms and pairing it with a soft drop shadow that adds perspective to the type and creates the appearance of type floating off the page.


Do not use the rise arrow pointing down.

Avoid creating a long shape out of the rise arrows.

Graphic elements should support the message, not take over. Avoid creating elements that distract or overpower the content.

Do not place graphic elements over a person’s face.

Strategic Communications and Brand Management

University Relation and Advancement

Valera Hall 125
18111 Nordhoff Street Northridge, CA 91330-8242

Phone: (818) 677-2130

Send email

Need approved logos, typefaces or graphic elements or additional information? Contact Kevin Lizarraga, Director of University Marketing.

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