When you put an honest energy behind your work, the client picks up on it. Very rare is it that a client approves your favourite logo design without any structural amends to the main body of the logo. This was the case with AFAI’s Cultural Accelerator logo design. It was likely due to our hard push in the direction of this option. We were legitimately proud of this piece, it was one of our best logos at that point and we didn’t waste any words communicating this fact to our client. It goes to show that when you put an honest energy behind your work, the client picks up on it.

AFAI’s Cultural Accelerator was an incubator for young African entrepreneurs. Our brief was to capture the African aesthetic through the narrative of the logo. Being that the consumer of the incubator was to be African, it was pivotal that the logo — the face of a brand — communicated the universal African element that is warm and empowering to its consumer.

The logo takes its inspiration from the African Sun. Not much is warmer than our Sun. It is also the single most ubiquitous element of an African context. Starting diagrams of the Sun we crafted the logo from the outside in. With the outer layer becoming the ‘C’ and the inner layer becoming the ‘A’. The yellow outer layer represents the cooler layer of the Sun, becoming a warmer orange and eventually a white hot at the epicentre.

We stand by our belief that however small or subtle, the logo has to sit inside of its own universe. It has to be born from defined inspirations and parameters that inform the growth of the logo from sketch to export.

Working with a client who is looking to establish an African narrative is the greatest of pleasures. We need to understand what design feels like from an African perspective and we need to stop designing shit logos for non-profit clients. They’re still paying you for your service, so stop treating them like they ain’t shit.

 

Client:
AFAI

Art Direction & Design:
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Illustration:
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