We are pleased to announce that Gehrig + Kelly has been awarded a 2017 Summit Creative Award for the work created for our client, AXIAL ENGINEERS.

Qualified entries are those from advertising and public relations agencies, creative boutiques, in-house marketing departments, video production, web and graphic design, and interactive firms with annual billings of under $30 million.

Participating Countries

The 2017 creative competition included companies from the following countries: Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, England, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Ireland, Malaysia, Martinique – French West Indies, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and the United States.


The 2017 creative competition drew more than 5,000 submissions from 24 countries in 18 major categories.


The Summit Creative Award judges came from both large and small-size companies and universities. This year’s panel of international judges included professionals representing the following countries: Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, South Africa, and the United States.


Winners were selected in categories that included print, broadcast, interactive media, online advertising, marketing collateral, redesign, direct mail, political, corporate video, public service, best idea never produced, and industry specific marketing.


Trustin Vocational Consulting provides vocational evaluations, testimony and written employment plans for family law attorneys. Their mark needed to be associated with the law industry, while positioning itself as elegant and simple. I always begin every job with rough pencil sketches. This allows complete freedom to think laterally and get the “mistakes” out of the way. After we arrive at a few that we like, I then scan those sketches and begin refining one or two. I arrived at a stylized “T” that also suggests a vertical column. A simple sans serif font was used with extra tracking, allowing for maximum legibility and simplicity.


Pharos Wealth Management is a financial services firm founded on principals that are focused on helping clients pursue and achieve their financial goals. The term “Pharos” describes a guiding light. The firm was formed because of a realization that real people need practical help to navigate the seemingly confusing, opaque world of investment. Pharos is your guiding light.

I began by examining “light”—not often-used lighthouses, but rather the beam that forms the light. We wanted a dynamic feel and a mark that would easily translate on any device. Our font has an open, friendly feel and is rendered in a charcoal grey; this helps to compliment the two-color mark. Once again, Gestalt principles are at work, with the negative space forming the beam of light.


CentrIQ is a mobile technology platform providing an easier way to operate and maintain your home and everything in it from the palm of your hand. The CentrIQ app provides a much easier and efficient way to manage the information attached to anything in your home—the appliances, the equipment, the paint—or even reminding you when to water particular plants in the garden!

We began the development of this brand with a G+K Brand RoadMap, which determined the core values, brand message, brand personality and finally the iconography. The focus became the “IQ” portion of the name—a smarter way to monitor everything associated with your home. I placed a roof graphic over the “IQ” in the logo to help draw the eye there. Adding a chimney as part of the lower case “i” helped to integrate both elements.


A family law practice with two locations serving the SF Bay Area. During development of our Brand RoadMap, we identified three Core Values that defined Holtz Law—Trust, Commitment and Professionalism. Their new brand identity needed to convey these values in a simple, contemporary manner.

The two basic shapes represent a coming together to achieve constructive change, while simultaneously creating a pillar in the negative space between. Closure is a Gestalt design technique that uses the human eye’s tendency to see closed shapes. Closure works where an object is incomplete or the interior space of an element is not fully closed, but the viewer perceives a complete shape by filling in the missing information.

The font is clean and contemporary, positioning the firm for the future.


Gourmet Food & Wine Tours is the first walking food-and-wine pairing tour company featuring the most charming parts of Sonoma, Napa (Yountville), Sausalito and Tiburon, celebrating some of the finest restaurants in California Wine Country.

Their logo needed to express the joy in discovering gourmet food and wine in an artistic, whimsical yet elegant manner. The font for the logo was designed by Herman Zapf and helps to position the organization apart from their competitors.


MHC+B is a professional organization handling detailed bookkeeping while not losing sight of the big picture. And they are not just bookkeepers. Rather, they are partners who share an interest in the long-range financial health of their client’s business.

The MH CONSULTING + BOOKKEEPING logo is specifically designed to accommodate any media. I began by exploring a variety of shapes with the focus on “MH”, finally arriving at a mathematical equation feel coupled with a checkmark. The checkmark is universal and conveys that something is “correct, or dealt with”. I then integrated that to become part of the “M”.


L Bailey Search is a contingency search firm that works with the rigor of a retained search firm. To make the best match, they interview the top prospects to determine the right fit and find the ideal candidate for specific job openings. They also put a strong emphasis on the career aspirations of the top candidates to be sure they are aligned with the position.

The starting point for this mark was the concept of “search and find”. What makes a candidate for a specific employment opportunity unique? Through their proprietary methodologies, L Bailey Search is able to identify not just a group of candidates, but more candidates that are relevant. Feeling that human forms were over-used in this category, we instead opted for an abstraction. The finished mark symbolizes the uniqueness of individuals and the action of finding a specific person.


What’s a logo, exactly?

Brand is much more than a name or a logo. When it comes to an organization, brand is everything and everything is brand. It’s about caring about your business at every level. And following through on—and effectively communicating your company’s promise.

A logo is just a shorthand way for people to know who’s talking to them. An eye-catching, memorable logo helps people find your product or service among thousands of other products or services. It’s important that clients understand what their logo is communicating, both as a symbol in isolation—for new customers—and as a consistent image of their brand for existing customers.

What constitutes a successful logo? 

-Establishes immediate recognition for your company

-Expresses the company’s character and attitude

-Conveys the company is an expert or leader in its field

-Instills in the public a sense of trust

Although logo design is but a small segment of what G+K does, it is extremely important that organizations understand the importance of branding in general, and that a company’s brand is a strategic asset that can be used to help position them against competition.

I will be posting some new projects soon—so stop back again.


INSIGHT. INSPIRATION. INTEGRATION. The “3 i’s” are at the center of how G+K collaborates with our clients.

INSIGHT. Your company’s brand experience is created from a brand vision. The experience itself is everything your audience senses about your brand. Engagement happens by identifying and exploiting the magic in a brand: the insight or idea that connects to the audience.

Information gathered during our Brand RoadMap process is distilled into an insight that will resonate with your company’s target audience. G+K then sews it into every communication touchpoint.

INSPIRATION. “Don’t loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club.”  — Jack London

The secret to having good ideas is to have lots of ideas to choose from.  Seeing the creative problem with ‘fresh eyes’ is a prerequisite for producing a concept that will present the proposition in an original and memorable way. First, we must understand what the target audience expects to see; then we take them by surprise by introducing the unexpected.

Great execution becomes content! This approach also helps our client’s ROI by creating relevant information about their product or service in a unique way, so our story will be heard.

INTEGRATION. A good working process is even more crucial when brand campaigns are executed across a range of media. This ‘integrated campaign’ approach is used when the brand seeks to project a core message or insight to as broad an audience as possible. Today’s IMC (Integrated Marketing Communications) model includes everything from digital sales promotion and social media, to event advertising and more traditional channels.

Having a clear brand vision first before a company creates it’s icons, logos, websites or advertising promotions, ensures the clarity and focus that is necessary for companies of any size to effectively communicate their brand experience.


A company’s brand is a value-driven investment. This investment needs to be managed proactively as an asset for growth.

AXIAL Engineers is a structural engineering firm located in Marin County, California.
Gehrig + Kelly named the business and created a Brand Roadmap that defined their core values, brand message, brand personality and finally, their logo and supporting iconography.
After developing many rough sketches and presenting a quantity of digital roughs to the client, we arrived at a solution that included the “A” in Axial to create the logomark. This was then combined with the customized lettering of the rest of the name to be viewed as one.
The square represents solidity and weight. The pyramid (the most stable of all shapes) is not seen right away, but moments later. The shape of the “A” points downward and converges into sharp points.This helps to convey preciseness, knowledge and expertise. The color blue was chosen to evoke strength, trust and dependability. The deep grey for calmness and balance.

G+K works with your company to determine what exactly is needed to achieve clearly defined goals. In other words, we identify a strategy and then
decide on what tactics will be effective for increased ROI. Our rapid response solutions and objectivity combine for an effective communications strategy for your company; large or small.


Tom Gehrig