Deconstructing the meaning behind the new ITE blog logo – Robert Griffin, PGCE Programme Leader, Art & Design

‘I see what you mean’

Last summer I was asked to design the logo for our new ITE blog website and since its launch it now seems appropriate to share my thoughts about the ideas behind the brand and the design process overall!

With a background in graphic design, I’ve always enjoyed the challenges of this particular design genre as it really focuses on the issues surrounding visual literacy and how we ‘read’ images. Brian Kennedy, Director of the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio, defines visual literacy as ‘the ability to construct meaning from everything we see’. After all, 90% of everything we see is an image. Kennedy highlights the importance of ‘intermediality’ which he defines as ‘combined literacies’ to read in a multimedia world.

The design process is a roller coaster journey of ups and downs. It’s never a completely linear process but moves from side to side, diagonally and full circle! Essentially it is visual problem solving and mental gymnastics rolled into one. The sketch drawings show quick renderings of ideas that were then further explored and experimented within Adobe Illustrator (industry standard graphic design software, part of Adobe Creative Cloud suite).

The key questions, embedded in the brief, were as follows:

  1. How do you portray our research focused, forward thinking ITE department?
  2. How do you portray our ITE department as a leader in Wales?
  3. How do you portray both English and Welsh languages as equal partners?

The solution

Academic excellence is often symbolised by the mortar board – this isn’t a particularly new idea. However, the unique selling point here is the tassel morphing into a directional arrow that symbolises progression and ‘forward looking/thinking’. This arrow device possesses strong Welsh connotations and can be interpreted as the dragon’s tongue or tail.

The text had to show balance between both languages – a sense of equality was key and the green palette reflects the ‘green’ of Cardiff Metropolitan’s School of Education.