Opinions on corporate and brand identity work.

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This is a very old entry — images are small, formatting is off.


A Fierce Blue Camel

Reviewed Apr. 23, 2010 by Armin

Industry / Sports Tags /

Connecticut College Camels Logo, Before and After

Let’s be perfectly honest here. The only reason we are talking about this is because it involves camels. Specifically the “before” camel. Look at it and tell me you don’t want to learn more? Why is it so complacent? Who is it waiting for in such relaxed repose? Is it smiling at me? Can I take it home and feed it blue food? Okay, maybe I’m getting carried away and we should just state some facts. The adorable camel is the ex-mascot of the Connecticut College Camels, the 28-team athletics department of this small liberal arts college in New London, Connecticut, with a petite student body of 1,900. The Camels compete in the NCAA Division III but are also part of the exclusive New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC), a fact worth pointing out as it is a conference that features athletic departments with a chicken, a cow, a donkey and a polar bear as their mascots — needless to say, they are not the fiercest teams in U.S. college sports. Earlier this month, the Camels unveiled a new camel, created by sports-branding-machine Rickabaugh Graphics. (Sadly, their web site has been the same since 2006).

Taking this into account, the College hired Rickabaugh Graphics, whose owner Eric Rickabaugh will “redesign the camel and strengthen the school’s overall athletic identity, including its varsity letter”, according to a news story on the College’s homepage. The new camel mascot was envisioned primarily for athletic teams, and will initially be used accordingly. The current mascot, which is about ten years old, didn’t fit the athletic department’s desires for a stronger-looking, more intimidating camel. Gleaned from surveys and opinions, Rickabaugh Graphics identified the faults of the current camel: the vertical logo is difficult in horizontal layouts; the camel looks rather static, and the athletes would prefer a camel in motion; it doesn’t work on dark or complex backgrounds; and, most importantly, the connection to Connecticut College is somewhat unclear without a CC logo attached. The company also aimed to have the mascot stand out when juxtaposed with the other NESCAC logos, also proposing to change the College’s trademark royal blue color to a darker navy.
An early report on the redesign, back in February

Connecticut College Camels Logo, Before and After

The redesigned camel is just one aspect of a new graphic identity for varsity athletics that includes a more collegiate looking type-face, a new official “CC” monogram, and a darker blue for uniforms. The goal is to strengthen the image of Connecticut College athletics with a more unified, consistent presentation of athletics teams and communications.
Press Release

Without question, the new camel now perfectly fits the mold of The Angry Mascot Identity, with all the usual pieces of flair: pointy lines, shading, curved cut-off of the body, bulky typography. Bam. It’s done. We could spend days discussing the details of the camel — okay, sorry, not “could” but “will” — and the merits of the typography but the sad thing is that we could be talking about a camel, a cow, a donkey or a polar bear for any other athletic department. The recipe is so expected that it’s lost any kind of surprise. Granted, the old camel probably surprised in its doofusness, but at least it was a happy camel.

Unveiling the new camel.

Thanks to Sarah Munt for the tip.



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