Graphics illustration


The use of graphics has exploded in today's news environment – not only on corporate websites, but also on social media sites. News graphics are easily – and most likely to be – shared online as they present information clearly and quickly in a visually appealing way. Because of this, it is very important to apply consistent brand identity standards to all of our published news graphics. In doing so, it brings brand recognition and trust in RFE/RL's content.

1. Static Maps

It is important to apply RFE/RL brand identity standards to all produced content, including maps. Maps may be used as a stand-alone graphic or may accompany news content within an article, video, infographic, etc.

Here is an example of a well-branded RFE/RL map:

In order to ensure the consistency of brand and style throughout RFE/RL content and sites, maps must be created with brand colors, typographic treatments and graphic elements.

Stylizing maps can be quite complex depending upon the data and information to be highlighted. We have created guidelines for basic static (not interactive) maps.

1.1 Parts of the Map

Maps may consist of two parts as shown in the image below:

  1. Main Focus Map: The larger map which shows the main focus and data.
  2. Locator Map: The smaller map that is inside of the main focus map that shows geographic context.

1.2 Map Hierarchy

There are four hierarchical levels for maps:

  1. General
  2. Focus
  3. Highlighted 1
  4. Highlighted 2

Each level area must be stylized with its designated colors and graphic elements as shown below.

1.3 Colors and Strokes

Styles for the levels of hierarchy and the locator map.

1.4 Graphic Elements

Styles for elements and type representing city, capital, and highlighted area names:

Here is an example of a well-branded map with all four levels of hierarchy:

  1. General area: Countries surrounding Afghanistan
  2. Focus area: Country of Afghanistan
  3. Highlighted 1: Regions and cities around Kunduz
  4. Highlighted 2: The city and region of Kunduz

Of course, it is not necessary to have all four levels of hierarchy. This depends what information needs to be visualised.

Example of a map with only 2 levels of hierarchy.

1) General area: Countries surrounding Russia 2) Focus area: Country of Russia

1.5 Typography

All type used within the maps must use the correct brand typeface for each specific language service outlined in the Typography section.

2. Social Media Templates

The importance of consistent brand identity applies not only to our corporate website, but to all media where our content is shown, including social media platforms. In this section, you will find a variety of graphic examples for use on social media. If you would like a template of these examples for your language service, Pangea Digital Design can provide one by request (here).

2.1 Posting Images with Text

The placement of text on top of an image should be done thoughtfully and carefully. Below are guidelines and examples that are flexible, yet comply with the RFE/RL brand.

Example of text placed on an image.

2.2 Safe Area

For best visibility across platforms and devices, all text, service brandmark, and elements should be within the safe area (40px from the edges) shown in the example below.

2.3 Overlay

An overlay of 60% black should be used on top of images to ensure proper text legibility. The overlay can be applied to the entire image or just a fraction of the image behind the text.

Examples of an overlay used on only part of the image.
Examples of an overlay used on only part of the image.

2.4 Brandmark

Each image should include the correct service brandmark in the color variations of white or reversed. It is recommended to place the brandmark in the top (left or right) and it must be placed within the safe area mentioned above.

2.5 Typography

All text should use the correct typeface for the specific language service outlined in the Typography section.

  • Color of the text should be 100% white on 60% black overlay.
  • For titles and highlighted text, use bold font weight.
  • For body text, use regular font weight.
  • The font size should adjust according to the amount of text being placed on the image. If there is less text, the font sizes can be larger. If there is a lot of text, font sizes should be small, yet not too small so that it is still legible when viewing on smaller devices.
  • The recommended minimum size for body text is 35 pt the maximum size is 70pt.
Example of an image with a lot of text.
Example of an image with little text.

2.6 Highlight

There should always be one element highlighted with a block of orange with an opacity of 80%. Never highlight more than one element on an image.

Some examples of elements which could be highlighted include:


The highlight rule does not apply for commemoration images. These should have an element highlight of 80% black instead of orange.

Brandmark highlight

In case there is no specific element to highlight, we recommend to highlight the brand mark for added visual interest.

Topic title
Topic time
Brandmark highlight and multiple images

2.7 Breaking News

To promote breaking news, use this graphic as a placeholder before a proper news photo of the event is available.

The English version is available on Pangea's Graphic Database under "Breaking News Graphic". Localized versions are available upon request. As with all branded graphics, please use as-is. Do not alter or modify in any way.

2.8 News of the Hour

To promote the top news of the hour, we recommend to use this graphic.

The English and Russian versions are available on Pangea's Graphic Database. Additional localized versions are available upon request. As with all branded graphics, please use as-is. Do not alter or modify in any way.