CLEVELAND BAPTIST CHURCH

A modern, relevant rebrand for an established church.

In 2018, the baton of leadership was passed onto a new pastor, Peter Folger. Cleveland Baptist Church began in 1958 under the leadership of Dr. Roy Thompson. After his 37 years as senior pastor, the pastorate was passed to Pete's father, Kevin Folger. Over the last 60 years, Cleveland Baptist Church has been a beacon of hope, life, and truth in the needy city of Cleveland. 

Cleveland often gets a bad reputation. In its heyday Cleveland surpassed cities such as Los Angeles in its splendor and opportunity. Over the decades it has had its ups and downs, but in recent years has been making an amazing comeback as a city of opportunity. 

Cleveland Baptist Church is moving forward in a city back on the rise. Stephen Houk Designs was tasked with bringing a modern and relevant brand that can represent the growth of the future.

Before

After

+ DEVELOPMENT PROCESS

We met with the key leadership prior to getting started. Being new to Cleveland, it was helpful to get first-hand knowledge of Cleveland and the pride that people have who have grown up there.

We discovered a few key factors that seem obvious, but were vital in our research:

  • Cleveland has a lot of bridges. This was an original direction as we began as a possible communication visual representing transition, movement forward, etc.

  • The Cleveland Clinic is world-renown, making Cleveland an important destination.

  • The resolve of Cleveland. During rough times, Cleveland has shown itself to be a Cinderella story, an underdog, underestimated by everyone who doesn't know her. Clevelanders are proud, hard-working, and loyal. 

  • The Cleveland Script. The words "Cleveland" elegantly represented in a unique script logo.

  • The city skyline. It doesn't rival that of New York or Chicago, but the buildings in Cleveland's skyline are unique and filled with history.

The focal point of the new logo highlights the Cleveland skyline. It also resembles a heartbeat EKG which speaks to the famed Cleveland Clinic, but also to the life that a church should bring to a city in need.

+ DESIGN APPLICATION

The simplicity of the logo movement and lines allow versatility in the brand communication. The red line can be seen as a continual visual representation of the church's mission. It is meant to grab attention without being overbearing. The colors are contrasting and work well for a modern urban scene.

+ CREATING AN IDENTITY SYSTEM

The final step was to put together a comprehensive brand identity system guide book which clearly spelled out Cleveland Baptist's vision language along with instructions on how to effectively put the fully identity system to use.

Stephen hit it out of the park! This is a world-class design. Super clean, minimal, and sharp. We picked the right designer to help us move forward into the future.
+ PETER FOLGER

Pastor at Cleveland Baptist Church

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