Join Bill Gardner for an in-depth discussion in this video Parsing the big blue marble, part of Logo Design: Symbolism in Nature.
- I am an incurable categorizer, which is an important part of giving context to a topic. You'll find throughout this course that I've done my best to grab everything nature, minus the animal kingdom, which still leaves us with a world of subjects to cover, literally. I considered building this course around the seasons of the year, nature's natural calendar. It certainly is a theme that serves designers well with clients that have a stake in seasonal concerns. Hospitality industries and resorts may cater to both ends of the spectrum.
Heating and air do as well, though much of their business is about making interior spaces seem like one season all year long. Nurseries and agriculture industries also live and die by the seasons. As designers, we even rely heavily on the four-season palette, recognizing the public identifies blues and whites with winter, bright greens with spring, deeper greens and yellow suns with summer. And finally, oranges, tans and browns for autumn.
This logo developed for Bethany Vineyards in Australia does a great job of demonstrating an industry that relies heavily on the fortunes of nature year-round. Note the adherence to that color palette regardless of the flip-flop of our seasons in different hemispheres. All that said, for the purpose of this course, I came to settle on a somewhat archaic method of dividing nature into the classical elements, or as scholars once said, the "States of Matter".
The four elements were originally thought to be the four categories under which anything might exist. Earth represented solids, water was anything liquid, sky covered off on the gas use and fire represented plasma. For our purposes, I'm knocking out the whole fire thing and breaking plant life into a category of its own. Even though this dates back to at least 450 BC, I'm not surprised that designers still today find relevance for referencing it in their designs.
It's a great way to visually set the landscape for a client that is wholly concerned with the environment. It recognizes they understand that all aspects of nature relate to one another. There's still a bit of mystery associated with this quartet, but as these logos indicate, it's a pretty effective way of saying, "Everything in nature." And literally, "All things under the sun."
- Understanding how globes "read" in design
- How to use water
- The meaning of sun, moon, and stars
- What trees tell us
- Weaving a deeper message with plants
- Storytelling with flowers