April 12, 2017

Adventist Church Adopts New Global Visual Identity System

The Seventh-day Adventist Church’s top leadership voted on Tuesday to approve a new identity system during this week’s Spring Meetings, held at the Church’s headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, United States.

The Spring Meetings are one of two annual gatherings of the world leadership; the other, Annual Council, takes place in October.

The 20-million strong Seventh-day Adventist Church operates in more than 200 countries and territories around the world, and worships in more than 900 languages, making it almost impossible to create a cohesive visual identity - something administrators and church leaders are hoping to change.

Ted N.C. Wilson, president of the Seventh-day Adventist world church, expressed the importance of such a unified approach to the Church’s visual identity as we move forward. “Throughout our prolific history, however, we have never had a unified strategy for how to present that message across the thousands of visual materials that we create every week,” said Wilson. “Our churches, ministries, and organizations, have spent such a long time trying to stand out that it is sometimes difficult for people to tell that we all stand together—that we all belong to the same body.”

"The Creation Grid gives every designer the freedom to communicate in their context and be connected to the global Seventh-day Adventist movement."

Using the new font “Advent Sans,” the new visual identity is functional and consistent in every language where the church is present. By using “Advent Sans,” the name of the Adventist Church can be written in 91 languages. Project leaders hope this grows to 200 languages by 2020. (See Example)

Another change is the color scheme for the logo. Because the Adventist Church contains a myriad of cultures and design styles, it was found to be ineffective and cost-prohibitive to recommend a universal color system or even a large number of regionally appropriate color systems. This means, local designers and church leaders will be able to choose what works best for them, in their region. The guidelines include the initial set colors and the communication department of the world church stands ready to extend it as needed by different regions. (See example)

“We wanted this new design to specifically incorporate our beliefs,” says Williams Costa Jr, director of communication for the Seventh-day Adventist World Church. “This new design feature reflects the importance of creation and the 7th-day Sabbath to Seventh-day Adventists.”

With this in mind, one of the biggest changes to the new identity system is the Creation Grid. The Creation Grid is a design template that consists of seven columns. It allows designers to do whatever they want on six columns of their design. The seventh however, known as the Sabbath column, is specially designed to be distinct from the rest of the design. (See example)

“Can you imagine if we were all visually united? Not just in a few languages, but in every language spoken by the 7.5 billion people on the planet,” said Sam Neves, associate director of communication for the Seventh-day Adventist world church. “The Creation Grid gives every designer the freedom to communicate in their context and be connected to the global Seventh-day Adventist movement. We believe this is a truly inspired idea that will really empower us to accomplish our mission.”

The Adventist Church will adopt the more comprehensive and dynamic guideline system, which you can see at identity.adventist.org. This process will continue to adapt to new developments and technology and will be under the supervision of the communication department of the world church.