My son the builder (known to those who love him as master of the physical universe) needed a new identity. Not the Jason Bourne 16 different passports with matching mustaches kind of new identity, but the kind that comes from starting a new enterprise.
For years, my number two boy has been creating beautiful, functional space (from historic renovations to elaborate contemporary homes) for those who appreciate someone who knows what he is doing. Now, instead of being either a one-man band or a contractor’s right-hand, he will be the contractor himself. New challenges, broader responsibilities, more fun. That’s his philosophy. And among those challenges is, “How do I think about a name and a logo and all that?”
I began by telling him about a current client of mine, a 20 year-old company with capabilities so enhanced over the past couple of years that they’ve been obliged to reassess their identity, a job I’ve been helping them with.
“Shouldn’t we be revising our logo?” I hear from time to time. And so far my answer has been, You don’t know yourself well enough yet.
To be most useful, a logo and all that goes with it is the natural expression of a deep-rooted understanding who you are: the benefit you are committed (and able) to offer the world, and the spirit in which that offering is made...and delivered.
My son enjoys that depth of self-understanding.
The short list of criteria for his new identity were these:
- His name
- His profession
- His primary audience, and the benefit he offers them
- His spirit: playful, loving, deep
- All presented in a manner that is arresting, emotionally positive, meaningful, memorable
(And, a private chuckle between the two of us: the dancing star on top of the Statue of Liberty hammer includes the same multi-colored watercolor I use in my own logo––glasses with a third eye.)