In Progress: Logo Design
Without giving away too many details about how it happened, I’m currently working alongside the talented Cameron Moll on a client website for the rebirth of the centuries-old newspaper, the National Gazette. Cameron and I thought it would be interesting to write a little about the process behind the project, starting with the logo development. First a bit of background on the National Gazette (paraphrased from our client):
The original newspaper from the 1790s was sponsored by Thomas Jefferson and ran semiweekly to fight back against the Federalist Party. The paper inadvertently helped create the modern political party by forming an infrastructure based off the paper’s circulation.
The rebirth of the National Gazette this time will be in website form, and attempt to take a more non-partisan voice to politics. Cameron and I decided that each of us would put together one basic direction for a logo (with possible variants also offered). I really connected with the underdog attitude conveyed by the original National Gazette and the idea of the common man’s rights and responsibilities. I wanted to take that essence and give it a personality of it’s own. That manifested itself as a nice snarky quip in the form of a fish. Not just any fish, but one out of water and not too happy looking. I like that this could call to mind something “not smelling right” or the idea of fishes being wrapped in newspaper (“today it’s news, tomorrow it’s fishwrap”). It just has this great blue collar feel.
Since this was just the first round, and a rough take, I had Kevin sketch up a version of the fish—brilliantly nicknamed by Kevin as “Guzzy”—for placement and promised a much more polished version if this direction was chosen—which would have been rendered in a pen and ink style approximating a woodcut look. I set the name in a typeface called Agincourt, a beautiful blackletter that imbues a bit of history and a slight connection to the original logo (not that anyone is alive to make that connection). This paired with the more modern take from the fish sets up an interesting juxtaposition and makes for a pretty memorable and unique logo. Enough about what I think though, here is the logo I presented (both with and without fish), have a look for yourself.
Overall, Cameron and I felt the pitch was very strong (Cameron’s work came out beautifully) and as such, we didn’t really mind whose logo was chosen. We are presenting this more as a behind-the-scenes look into the design end of a client project.
That’s about it for now, head over to Cameron’s site to read about his take on the National Gazette logo.