Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Graphic Identity Part 2--Mascots and Ministry-specific Logos

This post is part 2 on an important, yet often neglected aspect of ministry, especially in a missions or cross-cultural context.  What is our graphic identity?  What is our brand, to use a popular word today.

Before you develop your brand and your graphics, you need to understand why you exist.  A well developed brand gives credibility and formality to your ministry, creates opportunity and establishes legitimacy. People will begin to identify who you are, why you are, and desire to be included in your group. Value the artists in your church or ministry…they can have a huge impact!

Once we had our logo, Samuel kept asking me about what I thought of him creating a mascot.  A mascot?  Why?  This isn't McDonalds or Burger King.  He instructed me that a mascot makes the communication of activities and events far easier, and much more consistent.  A mascot can do everything from teach English to play basketball to sing serenatas.  A mascot, be it an animal, a person or a totally new creating, helps people to remember your publicity, and relate it to the appropriate group.  So...Samuel created our celebrated mascot, modeled off a rather illustrious repeat visitor, Brigam, from Buffalo.

Brigam became the embodiment of the ministry here, with the church's logo always featured prominently on his ample chest.

We also found the need to visually identify sub-ministries that are primarily under the community center umbrella.  So Sam developed a whole new set of logos that we use to promote certain specific ministries.  Below are some of them.

Finally, promotional fliers are created advertising a specific church or community center event.  I've picked two of many, many events that we've done over the years.

So what's the lesson in all of this?  Well, probably several, but one thing stands out...if you have someone in your church or ministry who is gifted in art, USE HIM OR HER!    Communication, whether web-based, printed or verbal, continues to be important in reaching out and sharing the gospel to those that otherwise might not hear, or be aware of, an event that they really need to attend.

Use the artists around you!  And if you are one of those people, remind others as best you can of the importance of the visual arts.

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