It has been a crazy year for Startup Weekend Bay Area, where we beat last year’s number of events in the first 4 months of the year with 5 events, including 1 Mega event. The team has been working away to prepare for the rest of the year with a brand new website and logo!
Startup Weekend Bay Area needed a brand identity. We’ve been so focused on creating awesome events, and building buzz in the media that we neglected making the Startup Weekend logo a little customized for us. The great thing is that we are allowed some creative freedom for our own personal logo. The starting point was the classic corporate logo of Startup Weekend, and we wanted to keep the classic nature of it here and introduced some constraints:
- Needs to incorporate the Startup Weekend characters
- Needs to incorporate some semblance of the beaker
- Needs to use Startup Weekend type font
- Needs to list “Powered by the Kauffman Foundation” tag
In addition to these logo requirements, we looked at some additional things that represent the Bay Area. We worked closely with our design partner, btrax to come up with the following additional requirements:
- Must speak to designers and developers
- Must include elements that represent the Bay Area tech scene
- May include some regional icons, such as a San Francisco Trolley, Golden Gate Bridge
- May include something that represents the eco-friendly nature of the Bay Area
In looking at a lot of other Startup Weekend logos, we noticed that many of the logos incorporated landmarks into their logos. For example, Startup Weekend Taipei morphed the beaker into the Taipei 101 tower.
Another logo we looked at was the Startup Weekend Hamburg logo, which didn’t really incorporate local elements but was stylistically impressive.
So by looking at these elements, the team of designers at Btrax worked away to make some pencil drawings. None of the designs that incorporated elements of the Bay Area, like Fisherman’s Wharf, Golden Gate Bridge, etc., seemed too exciting. This was because when you thought of tech, you don’t really care too much about these elements. The trolley was a nice symbol, but we were more interested in what people were doing in the trolley. So we incorporated some of the cool tech companies in the Bay Area, including Twitter, Facebook, Apple, and Google. We then added some mobile phones in the hands of the Startup Weekend people and added some headphones.
Then we got a better feeling for what people in tech in the Bay Area look like. The original trolley was highly detailed, so we removed a lot of the details, and simplified it. It now appears that the original beaker was widened and made to look like a trolley!
The next step was to represent the eco-friendliness of the Bay Area. A simple change was to turn the flames at the bottom of the original beaker into leaves. This also represents growth. The next step was to decide in an overall color, and we decided to stick with the classic Startup Weekend green, to keep up with the green theme.
The final step was to decide on a typography for the words “Bay Area”. We looked for scripts that were represented in the Bay Area, and we looked at the sports teams for inspiration. We finally decided on the Oakland A’s font because it had a nice flow to it, and the Y in bay can be stretched out nicely.
We also made a second iteration, shortening, “Startup Weekend” to just “SW” and made a short form that helps us promote our twitter handle of @swbay.
So we really hope you like the new logo, and please provide some feedback! I wanted to thank Jill and Brandon at btrax for really making an outstanding logo, and we hope that this logo can be the start of some really new and innovative things coming in 2012 and beyond!