Experts Suggest Pride Logo Refresh

Capital Pride

Following the release of Capital Pride’s 30 year anniversary logo, the Velvet Studio reached out to see what experts in the community thought, and the consensus was ‘if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it’.

Apple-logo-evolution-IDI-BlogWe spoke with Robin Langerak, PhD candidate studying human factors and cognitive / perceptual psychology, she also holds a Masters in Human – Computer interaction. Langerak when presented with last year’s logo, the purple star replied “That’s what I would call more iconic. Its simple shapes, we’re used to seeing shapes like that, they are really archetypical. The star for a Capital city on a map, that is a common and understood symbol”, when asked about this year’s 30 year anniversary symbol Langerak stated “There’s no symbolic logic there”. It is worth noting that the Purple Star logo was the property of the previous organization running Pride, and is currently tied up with their bankruptcy trustees.

We also spoke with a graphic designer specializing in engaging with youth at the Carleton University Student Association. Christine Falardeau also suggested updating the old logo, and pointed to Apple, noting that they simply upgraded the apple, but it’s always the same iconic image. Falardeau was concerned that the 30 year anniversary image was too busy and may appear blurry, or hard to reproduce in particular with printing, or converting from an online image “There may be some colours in there which you can see on a screen, but which don’t translate into print”.
Untitled.jpgLangerak also raised this concern around the colour groupings in the title, although she recognised the need to have the duel language element. When speaking to colour blindness which is common in men she said “red to purple to blue is a common problem, I worry that you lose that because there isn’t a high contrast.” The Velvet Studio had been made aware of several concerns around the main flag element, Langerak noted “I can’t even count how many there are [stripes], that’s not good for an icon or a logo. You should be able to look at an icon or logo and be able to assess very quickly the elements and digest it easily. This is extremely complicated and not easy to digest at all” she went on to explain “They are not arranged by the hue to see a gradient, and they are not arranged by contrast for you to see a full stripe”

We spoke with Tammy Dopson of the Community Advisory Committee who told the Velvet Studio that the logo was a piece of art designed to speak to the diversity and inclusion in the community. She stressed, that “In a compressed time-frame we do need to move forward”, she also noted that the logo was both temporary and transient. One of the key messages was  “It’s a great piece which draws conversation”, the logo was deliberated on by a logo sub-committee, before being approved by a larger committee. Dopson appeared thrilled that the logo was creating such a buzz, and people were engaging with it on both sides of the fence.

PepsiFalardeau suggested that the Capital Pride group going into the New Year should consider a refresh similar to the  original logo. She mentioned how CocaCola and Pepsi simply upgrade their logos to give them a new and fresh look. She pointed out that the important thing is to maintain that degree of brand loyalty which had been developed. When it was pointed out that Glenn Crawford was the designer for both, they agreed that one, the star logo had been a hit, but sadly the 30 year anniversary image may have been a miss.

Let us know what you think! Drop us a comment and engage

May 26, 2015 | Posted by in Archive, Pride | 1 comment

Comments (One Response)

  1. Harry Daddie says:

    Like most gay men, I went thru a lot thru my coming out process. Instead of being bitter about that, I strive to keep a positive attitude and try to be the quintessential definition of the word gay. I’m all about support and seeing life with the “Cup half full”. But that being said, the following is only an opinion and not a judgement.

    I fully agree that sadly the 30 year anniversary image for Capital Pride is a giant miss. For them to state that they are content with the fact that the logo generates conversation from both sides is not necessarily the best “PR” move. By stating such a thing, it references for me that they are aware that a lot of people don’t like it.

    It’s no surprise that Ottawa has this reputation of being completely 50/50. The first 50 represents people that love Ottawa and all it has to offer… these are the people that are content with the little things in life. The other 50 are those whom complain all the time and give Ottawa a bad name. Talking to close friends in Montreal whom are part of many organisations and affiliations within the gay village, for them, Ottawa has a unfortunate reputation of people complaining and lack action when things actually need to be done. With the good comes the bad, I guess.

    Looking at many articles and comments online concerning this year’s pride festivities, I keep stumbling upon people’s lack of appreciation for the hardship and difficulties that the new committee is going thru. Yes, Capital Pride’s website is minimalistic and lacking information so close to the festivity dates… but why are these people whom are complaining stop being negative and do something. Taking action for a change would be the first step. Go volunteer, be a part fo the change, be a part of the movement. It is so easy to complain specially in these days of anonymity and online bashing, but much harder to be selfless, get up from your computer desk and volunteer your time.

    That being said, that is why I feel contorted dishing out my opinion on the 30 year anniversary image. The new committee has been and is going thru so much that the last thing they need is negativity. But knowing a smidgen about publicity and marketing, I feel justified to state the following.

    Truth be told… every time I look at it, it’s like seeing it for the first time and I always have the same reaction: “Yuk…”
    As such, I will try to be constructive and supportive while I list my opinion for this new “logo”.

    1 – It’s not a logo. The star was much more poignant. When one looks at a geographical map, a capital is usually references with such a star. We could make do with the old logo being slanted, but the “capital Star” should of stayed and be modernized.

    2 – The stripped colours are just awful. First they are blurred… it just look like a low-budget, low-resolution image. It either looks like a hipster’s attempt to knit for the first time while using up the bits and pieces of the organic yarn they found at the unwanted sale bin of the farmer’s market… or… my grandmother’s polyester dress from the 70’s.

    3 – Supposed to represent the flags… sure. There is no recognition, no continuity, no distinction nor representation. I can’t see the pride flag, the bear flag, the trans flag, the leather flag… These are but mish-moshes of colour. It’s like a 5 year old found “paintbrush” on his dad’s computer and randomly selected colours.

    There is a lot of work to do in the 60 odds days left before the festivities. There is a lot of money issues and problems to deal with. This “logo” issue is the least of their worries. But I did share what I did in hopes that maybe it could serve as a verbalized justification of what people in the community don’t like about it… and maybe why we should go back to the star logo next year. When you need a press conference to explain your logo, and it can’t be self-explanatory upon simply looking at it, there’s your sign right there.

    This new committee had/has the power to restart the Pride festival with a new, fresh start. I for one thought that finally someone would actually listen to what everyone in this city is thinking… “Why is the parage on Sunday?” If there is such a money problem, why have we not instigated that problematic part the parade and found a solution to suit Ottawa’s needs. To have the parade on a Saturday, it would permit to flow with into a full on party Saturday evening and thru the night. Truth be told, having such a big Saturday could generate much more money, parties and “pay-at-the-door” events. I know everywhere else do their parades on Sundays, but why have we not catered to Ottawa and our needs. We are the people that might go on Sunday, but let’s admit it, we head straight home after… it’s Sunday after all. Who wants to party on a Sunday? But that’s an entirely other article and opinion.

    Happy Pride and Keep up the great work!

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