Established in 1978 in Boulder, CO, the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) is “dedicated to promoting the community of homebrewers and empowering homebrewers to make the best beer in the world.” It counts with 27,000 members. The AHA also publishes a bimonthly magazine, Zymurgy, and holds both a national-level homebrewers conference and competition. In turn, the AHA is a division of the Brewers Association, a “not-for-profit trade association dedicated to promoting and protecting amateur and professional craft brewers.” So: small, beer, awesome. Earlier this month the AHA introduced a new logo designed in-house.
The new logo incorporates several graphic elements that represent the fundamentals of the hobby, including a hop cone, a barley stalk and a tall glass of beer, on a circular background that evokes the shape of a bottle cap. AHA Director Gary Glass explains the design process: “It wasn’t easy, and the AHA staff and our graphic design team took the redesign seriously. We’re thrilled with this new visual representation of the AHA, our members and the broader homebrewing community.”
— Community News
The old logo looked like it was homebrewed in a dark basement or on a dare by someone to use Mistral. Sarcasm aside, the logo felt more like a corporate mark for a brewing company than something that individuals could rally around. Plus the typography and barley illustration were just not pleasant. The new logo, although not perfect, is a vast improvement. I love that the holding shape is the shape of a bottle cap and the slightly extended typeface sits neatly in the circle. The barley and hop illustrations are a bit funky, but I think drawing any kind grain stalk is always hard. I would have tried to integrate the bottom of the tall glass a little better with the circle but it provides a strong centerpiece of attention to the logo. Overall, this is like a great beer-infused seal that would look great on t-shirts and is much more appropriate for the audience.