When was the last time you heard about the artistic and creative accomplishments of Scotland? If a new organisation has its way, you’ll hear about them on a regular basis from now on. Creative Scotland aims to take destination branding to a whole new level to sell this region as a creative, artistic place full of rich culture and innovation. With a logo design and brand designed to represent their cause, they just might be successful.
This cause was formerly championed by several separate organisations, including Scottish Screen and Scottish Arts Council. Consolidating the task of promoting this beautiful and gifted region seems like a good economic and public relations choice. Representing this cause with a logo design is an even better choice.
The logo design for Creative Scotland has been the source of controversy, as many people in the region feel that it does not represent them or their land. However, its polarising nature may be part of its success. Rather than an ornate or overtly Scottish brand image, this logo is made up of a simple circle and square. These two shapes enclose the name of the organisation, although it is easy to read the wording as ‘Creative Scot’ and ‘Creative Land’ alternately. According to Creative Scotland, this effect is purposeful. Creative Scotland will emphasise not just the creativity of the land in general, but the artistry of the Scottish people. In a further burst of cleverness, the two shapes combined with the wording actually create the initials C and S.
Does this logo design deserve the negativity it has attracted? It is not a wholly bad logo, although there seem to be a few ways it could be improved. If the writing was slightly bolder and the shapes closer together, the initials would be more obvious. Further, the shapes could be refined slightly to appear a little less blocky and a little more creative. While the concept of the logo is good, the brand image itself could have undergone more work and thus been released to much less criticism. It seems a shame that government funds have been used to create an organisation with a logo design that so many Scots disapprove of. On the other hand, this controversial logo has got people talking about Creative Scotland and what type of image best represents it. This may be overwhelmingly positive in the long run.
What can we all learn from Creative Scotland? First, we can learn that an excellent concept often needs additional work in order to be perfected. Could a little extra effort have made this logo design just a little less disliked? We think so. Second, controversy is not all bad. In some cases, it attracts attention while inspiring community discussion and support. Last, that every business entity needs a logo design, from major corporations to the smallest local shops to governmental organisations. In a world full of marketing images, a logo design is the best way to get your community’s attention and show the world what you are made of.