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Jacob Cass – The “Mates Forum” logo design

While reading some design articles on the Internet, I came across a website designed by Jacob Cass, a young graphic designer from Australia. As I continued to browse his website, I found out that despite his young age(21), he has already accomplished much. Jacob Cass is recognized as a great designer in Australia and received the ‘Best of Australia’ 2008 Wolda Logo Design award. Not only that, but he is actively running a graphic design company called ‘Just Creative Design’ while studying for his design degree at Newcastle University. Needless to say, I was impressed by his achievements, and was eager to see the kind of logo work he has done. Going through his portfolio, it was obvious that he deserves the recognition of being a great graphic designer.

One of his logos was designed for “Mates Forum”, an online Australian forum for students to talk about everyday situations and to keep in touch. This design really attracted my attention with the typeface and color choice that Cass decided to use for the logo. The simple pen-stroke font gives a friendly feel to the logo, making it perfect to advertise an online student forum. By keeping the feel of the logo “friendly” and “free” the logo will keep a relaxed atmosphere in the forum. Also, by using the phrase “keeping you in touch” at the bottom of the logo, it states the purpose of the site right in the logo; which supports the logo’s simple and straightforward message. Through his use of color, Cass also contributes relaxed atmosphere that the forum is supposed to provide. The colored background almost looks as if it resembles the sky, with its baby blue color and soft brush strokes. All of these components make the logo seem very effective, and look professional.

After observing the “Mates” logo, I decided to read Cass’ personal description of it. Looking at Jacob Cass’ description I realized that the logo’s appearance was meant to resemble the logo from the television show “Friends”. Though I can see why re-creating a logo that depicted the word “Friends” would work for a logo that depicted the word “Mates”, I was disappointed in Cass’ lack of originality. It makes sense that if you use the format of a successful pre-existing logo that your logo would also be effective, I also believe that it takes credibility away from your own creativeness. Observing the rest of Cass’ portfolio, it’s easy to see that he does have the creative talent to create his own original logos. An example of some of his “more original” logos can be seen below:

“Enviro”, a logo for an environmental awareness campaign

An “Asian Cuisine” logo design.

Both of these logos by Cass seem very professionally done and do not rely on other logos to promote them. If Cass decided to take a more original approach for the “Mates Forum” logo, I’m sure that he could have made a more successful logo than his current design. Even though I wish this logo had more originality to it, I still think it’s very successful in portraying the message it was intended for.


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