Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Is it time to redesign the Kentucky Colonels logo?

I sincerely value all the good work that Kentucky Colonels do, but as a marketing and branding firm, I had some question about the historic logo.  I wear my Colonel-gear proudly, but have found that people have great difficulty reading it.


[NEW REVISION:] Look at the following charity logos.  Which one(s) stand out?  Which one(s) informs the public most clearly of the nature of the good work that they do? Now take a few steps back from your computer and look again. Which one(s) can you still read?


What if they're used smaller or farther away? Which ones below can you still read and understand?

Consider the two logos below.  Compare the readability of the original three-color version on the left to an all-text one-color version that is roughly the same size. 


A great logo should be clean, simple, uncluttered, legible when small, and representative of your style and values.  It should grab your attention and be readable and memorable with just a quick glance -- think e.g. Apple, Target, and Nike, or see the comparisons below. Which grabs your attention? 


Although holding sentimental value, the Colonels logo violates many basic design rules.  It has small light-on-dark lettering written in two concentric circles with three separate graphic elements (two people, two stars, six leaves) -- it's designed to be a beautiful piece of artwork, but doesn't function as a clean brand that can be noticed and easily read e.g. on a shirt or hat:
  
Is there any interest in exploring this?  Is the current design sacrosanct and beyond redesign?  Perhaps it holds enough historic value to overcome some basic design deficiencies.  That's a question for the membership, I guess; I'm just raising the issue. 

The redesigned version shown above is just an idea, obviously, but there are many ways to incorporate the values and concepts from the existing logo into something a little simpler and easier to read.  See a few more below.



All logos and designs shown are owned and copyrighted by their individual organizations.




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