Sensing Culture was a three-year project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), who believe that “our heritage should be protected for the future, and…that everyone should have the chance to explore and look after it”. To achieve this aim they support a variety of projects, including this one. As this project has several partners, a unifying brand identity was needed to help signpost and promote the project
This project was about engaging BPS audiences, so thought was needed to go into how we could improve accessibility of the project’s visual media. We wanted to take the opportunity to be innovative and see if we could address the visuals in an accessible way.
We created a logo that would be visually accessible. We established the project visuals early, so the logo could sit alongside other promotional items such as roller banners, photographs or leaflets.
The RNIB’s inhouse tactile images and maps team highlighted examples and ideas for how a logo could be made accessible. A graphic designer was recruited, and was set with the challenge of creating a logo, which would work for all types of viewers and reflect the essence of the project.
The resulting designs where reviewed by RNIB employees, including those with sight loss, to ensure that it met the agreed criteria. The logo consists of an abstracted form created by the letters ‘S’ and ‘C’. The letters blend to denote that Sensing ’S’ is not separate from Culture ‘C’. Sensing becomes a pathway that leads to a cultural experience. The branding’s simple form is an expression of its message, that a cultural experience can be gained in a quick, direct, confident and guided manner. The near symmetrical shape of the letters is suggestive of decorative detail or pattern. Whilst this could be heraldic, architectural, ecclesiastical or archaeological, the shape is ambiguous and does not define culture in any specific terms.
The challenge of designing a tactile logo made the designer think about standard processes in graphic design, and how things can be more accessible. He now approaches other design work with more awareness of the needs of different audiences.
- As much can be learnt from the process as from the outcome; projects are meant to be experimental, use the opportunity to be innovative.
- The target audience should always be involved in the development process.
- If you are working with people who are new to accessibility, give them as much support as you can.
All case studies