Cathedral Artists' Talks I


Andy Jerabek

This story behind the new visual identity of The Cathedral of All Saints is told in the first of a series of interviews with artists influential in helping Cathedral Arts grow into its mission.

Cathedral Arts: What is a visual identity?

Andy: It is a visual system created by an organization used to communicate its message.

Cathedral Arts: Why, after 131 years without it, does the Cathedral need one now?

Andy: The Cathedral of All Saints began a new ministry this year, Cathedral Arts, which is charged with the Cathedral’s mission—Helping people fall in love with God—through the arts. Cathedral Arts will present programs and speakers, promote events and classes, partner with other organizations, and fundraise. Many of these will need visual materials—ads, programs, posters, appeals. It became evident that a consistent message was required—both so Cathedral Arts is easily recognized through its materials and so the people who produce the materials have visual guidelines to work with. Cathedral Arts is actually part of the “brand” of the Cathedral, so its visual identity should be informed by the Cathedral’s. And since the Cathedral had no formal visual identity, I started there.

Cathedral Arts: What was the process you went through?

Andy: I explored the Cathedral’s essence as distinct from the Anglo-Catholic form of worship, which has its own visual rules established over centuries that govern such things as Easter, Christmas, Pentecost, liturgical seasons, and other spiritual concepts. In creating a visual identity that is specific to the Cathedral, I had to acknowledge those established rules while focusing on the distinct elements of the Cathedral of All Saints itself. I interviewed the people in the Cathedral who had the greatest interest in its “brand,” asking, What is the Cathedral’s historical purpose? What is its current mission? Who is it trying to reach? What are the symbols that represent the Cathedral? I collected printed pieces from the Cathedral Archives from the early days to the present to discover what kinds of visual communications have been used. I took hundreds of photos of the Cathedral, from overall architectural elements to such small details as the cornerstone carving, windows, memorials, and sacred objects.

Cathedral Arts: What are the elements of the visual identity that you created?

Andy: A word-mark of the Cathedral’s entire name; a monogram of its initials; a font system; and a color palette.

Cathedral Arts: How will it be used?

Andy: It will inform the production of major visual materials associated with the Cathedral—signage, programs, brochures, posters, ads, etc.

So, in the future, when anyone sees something from The Cathedral of All Saints, they will recognize it without a second glance because their eye will have absorbed Andy’s designs based on the art of the Cathedral and its Christian history. See what was hidden in the Cathedral in plain sight revealed through Andy’s work on September 15, when The Cathedral of All Saints reveals its new visual identity.