Before even seeing the original logo, I asked the founder of the charity KE Foundation if they were happy with it and the resounding answer was ‘Yes’. When I did see it I thought it could withstand a bit of tweaking…
The founder had been advised previously that the charity name did not communicate ‘deafness’ so her solution was to spell out the name using deaf finger-spelling icons.
However satisfactory this concept may be for the printed word it clearly does not transfer to digital communication: ‘KE Foundation’ is still wasteful of meaning in terms of a Google search. Established organisations do change their names, but there is of course reluctance and inertia. So the name and finger-spelling concept had to stay.
A long detailed logo that must be viewed large to remain legible presents practical problems for a website — it uses up valuable screen real estate where you would expect to find essential features and navigation. So I began by focusing on the text only.
And the final choice, though I carried on experimenting with borders before seeing that it didn’t need any:
Foolishly I showed this option to the charity founder and she liked it. The border did help to differentiate this version when displayed on a page of potential options — the same thing probably makes it stand out here? But when viewed in situ on a website or on a blank page the border becomes unnecessary and acts as a block to ‘engaging’ with the substance. So I had to talk things back round to my choice!
Early on I advised the charity founder of one great advantage of the internet over print — the potential for dynamism and animation. I could see the finger-spelling icons rendered as Flash animations performing the letters — it would certainly make an engaging logo, and as the website caters for deaf children it would be a not unacceptable use of animation. An interesting project for a rainy day… or a rainy week, I suppose.