To: Portland Shiraz Friendship Community
From: Claire Hoobler-Curtis
Date: May 9, 2017
Subject: Portland Shiraz Logo
Logos are crucial to any organization. Logos should identify, reflect the mission, and communicate something about an organization (French, 2016). If a logo fails to do this then the organization runs the risk of losing business and clients for not looking professional or capable enough.
There are many principles to follow when designing a logo. For starters, the should be simple (French), look good at different sizes and in different colors (French, 2016), memorability is also important (Cass, 2009), simplicity is vital (Cass, 2009) and finally the logo should be timeless (Cass, 2009). Some common mistakes of bad logos include not having a professional enough logo, making it too trendy and running the risk of it becoming out dated, making it too complex, having too much color and/or having poor font choices (Hardy, 2009). To sum it up, logos must be something that show the heart of an organization in a unique and timeless way that is easy to understand upon first glance.
One organization that needed a logo was the Portland Shiraz Friendship Community. The organization is a sister city program that builds a bridge between the cities of Portland, Oregon and Shiraz, Iran. As of May 2017, the organization is still relatively new and did not have any previous logo. The design challenge was to create a logo that successful represented this organization in a beautiful and timeless way.
Some of the first things to consider when making a logo are the needs of the client (French, 2016). The Portland Shiraz group had a few needs that needed to be fulfilled. While the organization is officially known as the Portland Shiraz Friendship Community, the name most members use is just the Portland Shiraz group. Another consideration is that both cities are called the “City of Roses.” That is a defining connection in the organization. The final main consideration of the organization when creating the logo was that the group is mainly made of older members with poor eyesight, so font readability was especially important.
From there the logo was created. The original logo uses Womby font only. Womby is a bold, sans-serif, all capital font. It is easy to read and has clean, timeless lines. It gives off a very professional, yet approachable vibe. The only text in the logo are the words Portland and Shiraz to keep it simple and to the point. Also that is what the organization is mainly known as and having a logo that read “Portland Shiraz Friendship Community” would be a lot of text. To highlight the roses as one of the most important connections between the cities, there is a small, basic graphic rose between the two words. It offers some small visual appeal while still keeping the logo simple and timeless. In the original logo black and white are the only colors used, but in the secondary logo the rose is red for a little more added visual appeal. Both versions work though with either color and they also both work at any size.
The logo ended up being a simple, clean, minimalist, professional creation that the group can use for years and years to come without any changes needed.
Below are the two examples of the logo in Figure 1 and Figure 2.
Thank you so much for working on this project with me. It was my pleasure.
Jacob Cass (2009) “Vital tips for effective logo design,” Smashing Magazine, August 26.
Gareth Hardy (2009) “10 common mistakes in logo design,” Smashing Magazine, June 25.
Nigel French (2016) “Logo Design: Techniques”, Lynda.com, December 16.