Passports open up the entire world to a traveler, but in terms of design and layout, there isn’t that much that lends itself to that sense of adventure – outside of some simple patterns that fade into the blankness of the page, that is. That being said, last year, the eyes of designers have set themselves upon the task of making passport design contain the same thrill a traveler has going forth on their next excursion.
Norway made bold strides in this area, enlisting the efforts of Neue, an Oslo-based creative design firm that reconfigured the national passport from cover to interior. The total makeover, which partly involves artwork detailing the country’s natural highlights like their majestic network of fjords, has garnered high praise across the board. However, a recent discovery has put our neighbors of the Great White North in this new design discussion.
Canada released their freshly re-designed e-passports in the halfway point of 2013. At first glance, they don’t appear to have any outwardly dazzling features. They do contain an electronic chip that transmits the pertinent information to computer systems that need it for identification. Moreover, there’s a “see-through register” feature that allows you to view ‘CAN’ when holding the pages up under regular light. The real artistic pageantry begins once you put the passport under an ultraviolet light.
Under black light, the pages come alive with crisp and colorful artwork that is an extension of the original design in place. A Reddit user by the name of Gallowboob took the time to showcase all of the flourishes in a series of photographs on the site. The original works center on pastoral scenes, historical moments and other icons of Canadian heritage take on that extra incandescent feel thanks to ‘optically variable ink.’
As you can see in the set of accompanying photographs, words don’t really do justice to just how stunning every inlay of the new passport looks beneath the UV light. And with the heaping amounts of praise pouring in on forums and other sites across the Internet, maybe this will usher forth a new movement of better artistry through something taken for granted for too long.