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Best way to use - UK college logo. What goes with sky blue?

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  • Best way to use - UK college logo. What goes with sky blue?

    Hello everyone,

    I am working for a brand new sixth form college in the UK. The college was provided with a great logo chosen by the students - this logo now has been used on all signage, sewn into carpets, on memory-stick-necklaces etc etc.

    The logo is of people reaching up. The blue is the college colour. The logo is set in stone, but I would seek your advice on how best to incorporate the logo with the college name "South Sefton 6th Form College" as whatever i try it always looks very busy and a bit messy. It is also too tall to be used effectively on letterheads etc. The font is Fontin Sans (free on the web).

    I am lucky enough to be in a position to spread the logos use across digital signage, prospectus, a new website and paper based forms certificates etc etc.

    Your advice regarding colour pairings (black/navy/grey?), complimentary colours or incorporating text would be great. Are there similar logos used out there in the world? I have found the task to be much more daunting that first thought! All the notice boards within the college have been decked out in red as all the blue felt a bit too cool/unwelcoming.

    Many Thanks

    Current college website If you watch the video of the opening, I did the red lightphoto "aspiration, opportunity, success" noticeboard seen in the first few seconds.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Reminds me of this logo at a local community college:

    You're really limited in the choice(s) of color, but from what you've provided, the logo isn't even consistent there -- why does the first one have a gradient and the second a drop shadow? I know they're the same shape, but that's still not identical.

    As a general logo rule -- the design has to transcend color and still be successful in black & white or greyscale. (yes, I said "transcend"... ha).

    Hope this helps!
    I love my job. I hate freelancing.


    • #3
      Logo Identity Standards and Guidelines are daunting, you've got that right. Have you done a google search to see how others are set up?

      You have a lot fo decisions to establish, so just take one step at a time and try all your options. I'm just curious if this logo is already all over the place as mentioned it might be a little late for standards.

      I agree with the shadows/gradients inconsistency. It's really important to have one style that works for all.

      You could work with silver, or some yellowish greens. But really you don't need to add any other colors with this logo because it has so much going on it's not going to benefit with more from extra colors.


      • #4
        Current branding is consistently "the blue" with the gradient logo. It is more a case of now fleshing that out with some depth and detail.

        It is good to note your comment about not needing much else to compete with the logo.



        • #5
          one thing you could do is head over to and use the color selector there to get a various range of colors that will go with your blue.

          Else, neutrals are any shade of brown, black, and navy. Other pairings could be purple, yellow, or another color using the same tone for example a melon orange.

          Please try to stay away from the words fading from black to white. This combination will be hard to place on any dark color or light color, from any distance or reduced size will wash out and be hard to read.

          Yes, as mentioned before, start with a black & white version. I can guarantee that the logo will be faxed or copied in black & white at some point and the gradients & drop shadows that you have in your second version are going to have a hard time coming through clear.

          Once you have a black & white then size the logo and print it out. The sizes should range from the letterhead, and business card and range up to an 11 x17 or whatever you have in your office to print.

          Then take the largest print you have, put it on a wall, walk across the room and see if it is still readable at a glance. The visual impact of holding it in your hand or having it on a sign that people only have a few seconds to read or "get it" are the differences that make a logo successful or not.

          Make sure that everything is in vector and that it is reduced to the most basic path components possible. Which means that if this is going to be sent to a sign shop to be lettered on cars, or cut on dimensional signage you want to have no paths crossing each other in the design itself.

          And, sorry if this seems basic, but I don't know if you are hired in, or a beginner at design. Have you had a color theory class (yet)?



          • #6
            Some very good points.

            The Adobe Kuler site is great. Although I am very aware of how busy the logo is and it will benefit from a standardisation on existing elements rather than an introduction of yet more fussiness.

            I will post back further work.

            Many THanks


            • #7
              Originally posted by shegetsby View Post
              Reminds me of this logo at a local community college:

              That logo reminds me of the "Happy Humanist" which is used as the logo for Humanism.







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