In 2016 the BPS Council asked Anne Jungblut to seek a designer and try out some possible ideas for a new logo.  The original specifications for the new logo were:

  • British Phycological Society written in full.
  • Logo featuring ideally micro and macro algae.
  • Discussion whether to feature a chemical structure for applied phycology.
  • Logo in one colour would allow for change of colour and matching various backgrounds.
  • Two colours would allow to show algae in different, “natural colour to highlight phycology theme.
  • “Sophisticated” font
  • Potential sentence for strapline: Advancing phycology and training since 1952; Advancing research and training; Research, application & training; Understanding and using algae.

Various ideas were discussed by a committee of the BPS Council, and an experienced botanical artist was asked to prepare a range of trial sketches and designs incorporating images of seaweeds.  The committee considered the options without achieving consensus (a bit like Brexit in fact!).

A smaller logo design subgroup decided to concentrate on inspirations from Volvox, which was the cover image for the British Phycological Journal prior to the launch of the European Journal of Phycology. Volvox represents the evolution of multicellularity, and the parent and daughter colonies can be viewed as symbolising networks of different entities, like the BPS linking and connecting research and science on algae, as well as teaching, mentoring and supporting students and early career researchers by the society and senior researchers.  We asked Sarah Palmer-Smith, a designer at Bournemouth University, to work up our initial ideas into a design.

The need for scalability and greyscale/colour-blindness considerations were taken into account in the development of the design.  The internal daughter colonies were used to provide focal points, with reference to microalgae (green and red unicells), pigments (red and green), organelles (red/green plastids) and products (oil droplets; biofuels).  The smaller cyan dots give the impression of cells or colonies in a petri dish but also resemble multiple plastids.

The final logo is supplied as vector files for Adobe Illustrator and PNG images.