Dave’s design input – #twitterVforce Insignia
An addition to the #twitterVforce Insignia design blog via Dave who created the planform overlay V Bombers:
Well here was the thing, neither of us had ever designed a squadron type crest before – So it was a rather nice little design project for us to tackle!
The challenge was to create something eye catching and fitting to the subject matter. Should we do something modern and simple, like the #twitterVforce stencil header of the main website or traditional? If modern we didn’t want to look corporate or a company as we aren’t one – If traditional then should we make it look like a squadron crest or even an adopted squadron badge style? We opted for traditional, but naturally the crown had to be substituted or removed completely, since we’re not actually an RAF squadron or affiliated to the crown armed forces Her Madge might get a bit miffed otherwise!
Typically the traditional squadron crests have a laurel leaf type border so we thought we’d stick with that plus keeping a banner and latin moto would be fitting also. So then came the tricky bit, how to incorporate the V Bombers into the design!
The easiest and most obvious one to start with would be the Vulcan. Everyone (pretty much) recognises the Delta shape aeroplane, especially looking down (or up) at it’s impressive wingspan, iconic slender cockpit & nose section, so it made sense to use that same profile. That has been used in lots of publications, patches, badges, even t-shirts over the decades so was a good start. There have been a number of patches which have used a similar layout, such as the ‘triangular Vulcan patches’ with camo Vulcan and the aircraft serial beneath or probably most recognisable the Vulcan Display Team badge with the white Vulcan profile and overlaid panther head. I also have a rare patch with similar camo Vulcan and all of the individual Vulcan squadron crests surrounding it. So that was the Vulcan sorted, stick with what has been used by many for decades, including RAF Vulcan squadrons!
The other two aircraft, the Handley Page Victor and Vickers Valiant wouldn’t be so easy! – Real avgeeks might recognise the Valiant in either side or wingspan profile but is certainly the least recognisable of the three. The Victor is probably most noted for it’s face on profile, those large wings, underwing pods, the imposing and iconic air intakes plus the ‘don’t mess with me’ cockpit design. That all adds up to the Victor being most recognisable looking straight at her, rather than from the side or above/below. In fact when you put them side-by-side the Victor and Valiant above/below profiles are too similar so that wouldn’t work.
Right then, how do we get all three in there so they can be recognised? – Rod had tried the layout of all three, one on top of the other but didn’t seem to work…
Flash of inspiration time! – I grew up in a small rural village, in fact only a few miles away from what was RAF Finningley, now Robin Hood Airport, the home of Vulcan XH558. Since an early age I’ve been an outdoors sort of person, I even spent many winter days as a baby wrapped up warm and stashed in a pram under the propped up garage door cos I just cried if taken inside! From the age of about 15 I was into shooting as a hobby, sport and general pastime. All kinds of shooting, from simple airguns to high velocity sniper rifles, small bore pistols to high calibre handguns and shooting in competitions against armed police units alongside former special forces soldiers and operators, plus game and vermin shooting… Now those last couple provided the inspiration for the planform insignia, surprising as that might sound!
The sight of Land Rovers was common, we used one for off road access onto land for shooting, as did many others, many of these sported a badge or logo in the windscreen, a bit like a National Trust Badge as often seen nowadays. In the country, the most commonly seen windscreen sticker is that of the BASC – British Association for Shooting & Conservation
Their logo is rather simple, three easily identifiable and associated profile shapes – A pheasant, a wildfowl and a gundog, all overlaid. Very simple and apt.
So, now to fit them into a small circle! – The Vulcan was the obvious starting point, it’s three pointy bits, nose, two wingtips fitting into the circle nicely without stepping out of line then somehow to get the other two in there somehow. Since none of the V Bombers looked anything like a pheasant, wildfowl or gundog and the BASC had pipped me to that post it needed a different take. Getting them to look right, identifiable and scalable was the key. Grey Vulcan, white Valiant and black Victor seemed to work. The face on Victor profile looks good, coming right atcha out of the insignia, showing off her ass kicking side!
So there you go, sent over to Rod and onwards to Stuart to do the rest of the design and make it just right!