I am really thrilled to share our new Rite Journey branding after having worked with Dan and Craig from Symbology over the last couple of months.
I have written below the story of evolution of our Rite Journey symbol/logo over the years. It’s been quite a journey so is a lengthy read…but if you’re into symbolism or are interested in what’s behind our TRJ logo…feel free to read on…
Those who have been connected with The Rite Journey over the past decade or more, may be familiar with the fact that we have had a number of logos over the journey.
Through the very early years we had a stylised logo including a spiral to represent evolution and holistic growth, letting go, surrender, release.
Then we moved to a butterfly for the girls’ program and a compass for the boys’ program.
The butterfly represented growth, transformation, transcendence, freedom, transition as well as the concept of needing to use its own strength to break free from the confines of the cocoon.
The compass represented journeying, the four points, direction, guidance, endeavouring to find ‘true north’, trusting our internal compass, using the tools at hand, freedom and wanderlust. The Latin root behind the word compass is derived from “com,” meaning “together,” and “passus,” meaning “way” or “route.”
Hence the butterfly and the compass represented beautifully the intent of The Rite Journey.
I wanted to combine the two logos, so we had both the male and female symbol in one logo and at that point one of our young Belgian connections, Gustav, created a symbol that combined stylised versions of the butterfly and compass but I also wanted a couple of other elements added.
Firstly, the circle which indicates a whole variety of things: focus, unity, cycles, infinity, inclusion, wholeness, connection, nurturing, initiation and being centred.
Secondly, the butterfly symbol also began to represent a number of other things. The wings are also leaves representing new life and growth, or a flower representing beauty, transformation and growth. The wings also contain the infinity sign to represent infinite possibilities and ways of being.
Thirdly, the swordlike compass points to represent warrior energy, purification, sacrifice, enlightenment, freedom, discrimination of thought, clarity, protection, righteousness and justice, purity and truth.
Fourthly, I wanted the symbols to be breaking out of the circle represent pushing boundaries, striving, and not being contained by society’s stereotypes of what it is to be a man or a woman.
The butterfly and compass were to be interwoven to acknowledge that we all carry aspects of the masculine and feminine.
I also wanted the four elements to be represented as this honoured the very first Rite Journey Ceremony I ever did so we see:
Earth – circle
Air – vane (compass points)
Fire – flame (butterfly wings)
Water – wave (butterfly wings)
It was time to have all of the above elements of our exisiting logo updated and a new branding to be developed.
So I worked with Symbology to find a new way to represent TRJ honouring all of the old but bringing a professionalism to the design and also consolidating the Man Made Branding and the Woman Wise Branding with The Rite Journey.
And as we were creating Dan had the idea of creating icons for each of the seven stages of our Hero’s Journey and so I’m pleased to show you them too.
It has been a real honour working with Dan and Craig who also have a deep understanding of symbols and so they were the perfect team to continue to write our TRJ story.
The new logo acknowledges all of the previous symbolism, we also honour the heritage of TRJ by adding the ESTD 1997.
Regarding the new font Dan reflects “We landed on a font with character that calls to adventure (Brothers) and paired it with a clean typeface (Montserrat) to achieve a modern vintage look. Notice how the angles in THE RITE JOURNEY mirror the black shapes in the logo. While the tagline and sub-brands perfectly match the line weight in the logo and the curved lines that connect the lettering. These fine details give the whole brand a confident and cohesive appearance.”
The horizontal “masthead” version of the logo is a new direction for TRJ and it symbolises the fact that most schools do a ceremony at sunrise or sunset.
To create our Man Made and Woman Wise logos we have ‘dismantled’ our TRJ symbol to include just the ‘male’ compass/sword element of the logo for Man Made and the ‘female’ butterfly element for Woman Wise.
These logos will be used on our conversation card sets.
Finally the 7 hero’s journey stages are represented and each is a shield that contains an element of the full logo.
1. The Calling – uses the western compass point. It symbolises 2 things:
– the ‘less than’ symbol which indicates a call to something greater, to evolve, to grow.
– the shape of a loud hailer…literally a calling implement.
2. The Departure – uses the top half of a butterfly wing and symbolises a bridge, departing from the known and crossing the threshold into the unknown.
3. The Following – is an arrow using the northern compass point. It symbolises that we have mentors who show us the way, we follow their direction, use their modelling, guidance and example to help create our own path.
4. The Challenges – is the upward ‘v’ from the northern compass point. It represents a mountain, a peak, a summit. A challenge, difficulty or an obstacle in our path, something that needs to be overcome.
5. The Abyss – the downward ‘v’ from the southern compass point. This represents the darkest valley, the pit, the nadir, the downpoint, the biggest challenge. And it is framed in a shield especially shaped like a diamond as it is from the abyss that we gain the gem, the biggest learning.
6. The Return – the ‘plus’ sign or the cross from the centre of the compass. The Return is distilling and understanding the learning from the journey. Returning into the known with the lesson. Finding the positive from the journey, hence the plus sign indicating positive growth despite the challenging circumstances you’ve experienced. The additional element of the cross also represents sacrifice to find newness.
7. The Homecoming – The circle with the butterfly wings. The circle symbolises completion of the journey along with a medal of success or a badge of honour. The wings/leaves within it represent taking flight, launching, new life.