Last week, I finally presented a logo-draft to the staff of the UXO-Survivor Information Centre in Phonsavan. I was surprised how easy it was to adapt to the Lao aesthetics. My goal was to make a logo I can live with – but more importantly a logo which the lao staff likes and can identify with. So I tried to use as much input from our Mini-workshop as possible. The result might not look like what we consider to be a good logo in western countries, but everyone was really happy with it (despite some minor changes I have to do) and I think everyone felt like they contributed something – the logo was not the work of a “genius” creative designer but the collaboration of all of us.
So this is the first draft. The flower on top is the Dok Champa, a symbol for Laos and since the NPA is from Lao people to Lao people, we included it. In the circle surrounding the inner-circle are small icons for bombs and bombies which show the connection to UXO. There are two jars in the logo to symbolize the geographical background (Plain of Jars in Xiengkhouang Province). And finally, the (disabled) people who are in the centre of the organization and who walk together into a better future :-)
Lessons learnt / Questions to ask
– aesthetics ARE very different in other cultures: I’m currently figuring out in how far it is possible to find a common sense and what I can learn from laotian aesthetics
– every element used in the logo should have a meaning
– in retro-perspective the mini-workshop idea was great and important for the development of the logo (fun, co-working and feeling of owner-ship)
– it’s very important to listen to everyone and work closely with people and get everyone’s opinion
– showing, demonstrating and making abstract talking tangible are great skills of a designer (especially when you work in developing countries)