Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Designing the new Milton Village View Logo



So how do you represent a village in 3 letters, in a small space of 207 x 80 pixels? That was the challenge of submitting a new logo for “Milton Village View” magazine. The old one that I had designed a couple of years ago was fine for print but did not reproduce well in a smaller web format.

It all started with pencil and paper. I prepared a couple of A4 sheets with lots of small boxes, in the ratio of 207 x 80. I roughly divided the sides into thirds (like a noughts and crosses grid) to give a structure to work with.

I had been asked to include the letters MVV, so now I started doodling. The angular letters gradually changed to curves in successive boxes. The letters M and both Vs seemed to work if at different sizes,  as did making the M asymmetric. The underlying grid served as a guide.

Trying to add additional detail or images behind the letters proved a dead end. However, circles in the valleys of the letters did give the impression of three figures with their arms in the air.

The next step was to go to a design software.  I chose to make a vector graphic – which could be scaled to any size.  Normally I would use CorelDraw. This time I tried Inkscape, an open source (free) program.

The recreated crisp logo shapes could now be coloured digitally. Milton has a surprising number of bridges – in the country park, by the river and over the A14. The curves of the M hinted at them.

Blue below one arc could represent lakes and rivers; green under the other suggested the park and village green spaces. The final use of orange behind a circle reflected sunrise.

The end result was unforeseen. It had evolved through the design process. It only remained to create bitmap and PDF versions of the logo for the magazine editors.

Milton Village View appears several times a year with news round and about Milton and will soon be on the web at http://mvv.org.uk

I hope you like the design. What other Milton features do YOU see in the logo?

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