Guardian Lutheran is a vibrant church and school community full of amazingly diverse people who treat each other like family. But you wouldn't get that impression from looking at their old website. The site was dull, outdated and lacked useful information. On top of that, it had to be updated manually one page at a time by one person. If that wasn't enough, they were using about 10 or so different logos and emblems to represent the organization.
Guardian needed a new logo that represented the personality and values of the community as well as a new website that would engage readers and empower the staff to make updates and changes as needed. With staff members able to add content the site could be used as a central point of communication for parents, teachers, students, church members, clubs and social groups, athletics, new members and families as well as a tool for community outreach. After all, a church is a living community and the website should reflect that.
After some initial research we came to the conclusion that most church and school websites are not designed well and don't provide useful functionality that empowers the community. Guardian would need a design that's warm, welcoming, professional and easy to read. Website functionality should allow members to create multiple calendars, event registrations, classroom and department specific blogs, special announcements, post homework assignments and deadlines, build custom contact and online registration forms, podcast weekly sermons, post photo galleries and provide special, password protected areas for members and parents.
Using photographs supplied by Guardian we designed a clean, usable interface that provided enough flexibility to display any type of content imaginable. We also added the ability for teachers to post homework assignments and provide downloadable files to help students better understand their lessons. A podcasting application was created to allow the Pastor to publish his weekly sermons in both audio and text format. With the ability to post announcements, homework, newsletters and periodicals online, printing costs were reduced to almost zero and freed up the staff to do more important things.
For the logo we created an icon that visually represents a shield (a Guardian), an angel and a descending dove. Central to the icon is the Cross, the main symbol of Christianity, with its powerful light rays emanating from the center of the design. The color scheme represents diversity. In conjunction with the rays and the way they come together in a single point, the message would be "unity in diversity" - thus the cross becoming an unifying force embracing different individuals and aspects of life. It is also a chromatic play on the same idea - when overlapped, those colors create the white light emanating from the cross. All four have to overlap in order to create a pure white. This is symbolic of the reversed process of a ray of light being refracted into creating a rainbow. The palette is also made up of mainly warm colors, which helps to create a friendly, inviting feel. The overall colorfulness through bright, saturated hues, gives the logo a modern look, helping Guardian differentiate itself as a brand.
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