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TAMU Webmaster's Blog

Information and insight from the A&M Webmasters

Brand family

August 22nd, 2008 by tamuwebmaster

So where’s the Web version of the Brand Guide, or Visual Identity Guide? The more I think about it, the more I think the answer will continue to be, “There isn’t one.”

And here’s why. The print guide is very important because it explains and constrains. It explains what the rules are, what the color codes are, what the areas of isolation are, what the fonts are, etc. And ultimately when something is printed, it is constrained by those rules. Aggie Maroon will look like Aggie Maroon across the board, and printing will be consistent based on the print procedures the university has set up.

The Web though, is different. Every monitor is calibrated a little differently, some hot, come cold. Resolutions, font availability, browser type, etc. all affect the “look” of a Web site. There’s no way we can guarantee a site is going to look exactly like what we had in mind. We give basic ideas and principles, but ultimately it’s your site.

Second, there’s no way we can regulate what goes up or out on a A&M web site, nor would we want to. The Web is all about community, collaboration and sharing. We become better designers and developers because of this.Plus, with servers in machine rooms, under desks, in offices and everywhere in between, who would want that headache?

Third, and probably the most philosophical, the web is about evolution. Why would I want to codify something that’s evolving? As soon as I do, then the evolution is hindered, or stops. I’ve seen too many new A&M sites that have embraced the principles of the Visual Identity Guide and made them their own.

There are a number of sites (and the number continues to grow) that have really taken the core VIG ideas and, what I like, adapted them to suit the needs of their sites and their site visitors/users. Here’s a small sampling, and I hope to continue adding to the list.What’s interesting is the different interpretations each of these sites take, but yet, jumping around from site to site to site, I still know I’m on a Texas A&M site because of the consistent color palette and use of the primary mark.

Like I said, this is just a small list, but I enjoy seeing what all everyone is coming up with. I’ve already borrowed a couple of ideas from some of the ones on the aforementioned list. So if you’ve got a new rebranded site, let me know, or if you are wanting to redo your site, give us a call or drop by.

Friday, August 22nd, 2008 Visual Identity
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