Out of Place Studio have partnered with the Natural History Museum to create a new visual identity for the National Education Nature Park, a scheme that empowers children and young people to make a positive difference to both their own and nature’s future.
The National Education Nature Park and Climate Action Awards is a free programme that will provide educators with the resources, support and guidance needed to put nature at the heart of education.
“Embedding nature across everyday teaching and learning will give every child and young person in England the opportunity to develop a meaningful connection to nature, contribute to nature recovery across the country and build resilience for a changing world”, said the Natural History Museum.
The programme is aimed at teachers and educators of young people of all ages, from early years through to college and further education, and needed a wide appeal. As a result, accessibility was at the forefront of all work, using colour, type, illustration and language that is inclusive, friendly, positive, and engaging.
Out of Place Studio’s aim was to take a holistic approach as there were “many organisations within the partnership, such as the Royal Horticultural Society, The Royal Society and others, the brand needed to appeal to audiences, while being able to sit alongside partner logos and identities in a wide range of documents”.
“It was important to us that the brand could be accessible to as many institutions as possible, so open-source tools – for example, the typeface – were used to provide maximum flexibility and ease of use, enabling everyone from internal staff to teachers and practitioners being able to work with the visual identity”
Throughout the process Out of Place Studio worked closely with representatives from the Natural History Museum and other partners to ensure that there was a unified vision from start to finish.
The brief and solution
The Natural History Museum was commissioned by the Department for Education to lead a partnership to create the National Education Nature Park and Climate Action Awards, a programme designed to drive and increase engagement with nature for all children and young people. From creating pollinator-friendly habitats where diversity can thrive, to digging ponds, the nature park will showcase an environment that supports climate resilience and teaches life-long skills.
Out of Place were commissioned to create a visual identity that would enable the scheme to succeed by appealing to its audience of educators and pupils from early years through to college.
The visual identity
Out of Place Studio said “many approaches were tested but the one that felt the most natural was the one that harkened back to our own childhoods creating rubbings of trees and scrapbooks of plants and animal drawings. Recreating this sense of joy in exploration was something that felt paramount to the National Education Nature Park”
“Most of the illustrative elements were derived from the nature that surrounds us on a daily basis. For example, the colours that make up the brand palette are all taken from plants, flowers, and insects you can find in British gardens and parks. These were only ever so slightly adjusted – where needed – to meet accessibility requirements”
Careful consideration was given to all of the different users that would work with the brand. This included internal teams, external designers, and individuals working in education. The aim was to have a flexible system that could be applied by users of varying skill levels, without a compromise in the quality of output.
“We wanted to ensure that a teacher could as easily make a poster to put up in their classroom as an experienced development agency could use the brand to design and build a website. This level of access and usability was very important to us” said Out of Place Studio.
“‘We are so pleased with the exciting, playful and unique design that Out of Place have produced for the National Education Nature Park and Climate Action Awards. We needed a design that appeals to a wide audience, is flexible and adaptable for a range of digital and physical assets, and works for further purposes such as data visualisation and presentations. Out of Place worked closely with us and our partners to produce a beautiful design which has recently been used on our brand new website, and ties the many elements of the programme together perfectly. We can’t wait to keep using it on future assets and help us in our journey of empowering young people to make a positive difference to both their own and nature’s future through the National Education Nature Park and Climate Action Awards”, said Laura Jacklin, Communications Manager of the Natural History Museum.