New Look and Message for Cycle Forward

posted in: Coaching, Consulting | 0

I’m thrilled to share Cycle Forward’s new logo! I registered Cycle Forward as a business a little over four years ago. At the time, the focus was entirely on consulting trail communities on how to better connect to (and thereby benefit from) their trails.

Since then, I’ve gone on to establish the nature-based professional coaching piece of Cycle Forward. What this means is that I provide one-on-one coaching held outside on trails. A typical client is looking for something “more” out of her career and is taking steps to make it so. Parks just so happen to be the setting for these discussions.

But back to the logo…while I really loved my first logo (designed by Bianca Serecin and shown at the end of this post), it hasn’t felt quite right for the business recently. The wheel at the center emphasized the bike, which really is just a (beautiful) piece of machinery to get people outside on trails and roadways. But my business, both the consulting and coaching, has evolved to focus on connection–to nature, to ourselves, to each other, to opportunties, etc.–with nature always at the center. I needed a mark that would bring nature to the forefront.

Here are a few things of note on how the new logo (designed by the ultra-talented Hilary Schenker of Green Comma Media) conveys some of what’s most important to me:

  • I came into the redesign thinking that a tree would replace the wheel. Hilary created some sharp logos with full-size trees, but I found myself wanting to be specific about what kind of tree. I went to my Instagram page for inspiration. What I noticed was that I take a lot of photos of the details of nature. It’s about slowing down enough to really notice what’s there. And so a “tree” logo instead become a “branch” logo, up close and personal.
  • What’s the tree? It’s an eastern hemlock (tsuga canadensis), also known as a Canadian hemlock. It’s perfect for so many reasons. It’s the state tree of Pennsylvania and is one that makes time spent outside enjoyable all year round. Just get to a stream with a hemlock stand nearby in January/February, and you’re in for a treat. And being that any given year, 20-30 percent of my projects are for Canadian clients, I couldn’t have been happier to settle on an image that would resonate for my clients there.
  • The needles of emphasis are the new needles, a symbol of growth and new beginnings. And the tree itself has a slow to medium growth rate, just as it can occur in life and in community revitalization. Growth can take some time. That said, the hemlock is a long-lived tree with a presence. One of my favorite trails, Hemlock Trail in Laurel Hill State Park, has a stand of old growth hemlock. A coaching session there last winter is one of my most memorable. To be there with a client staring up at those massive trees on a crisp March morning–wow!
  • The cursive font was selected to emphasize connection. As mentioned above, connection is paramount in everything that I do. It’s important in the realm of coaching and is important for trail communities as well.
  • And finally, the logo in its main form depicts the branch inside a circle. I think of that and the decision to use another cursive font as a nod to the last logo, with the circle ever so slightly looking like a wheel.

So that’s the story about the new look. I couldn’t be happier about it and how it helps to express what Cycle Forward is all about. Thanks for reading!

Original logo, created by Bianca Serecin in 2013


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