Posted September 24, 2015

Owl designs World Meeting of Families logo

Bill Milnazik
Graphic designer Bill Milnazik, TYL ’79, designed the logo for the World Meeting of Families 2015 Congress.

As owner of AXIS Visual, Bill Milnazik, TYL ’79, provides print and digital design services for a host of small- to medium-size businesses. Now added to his list of clients is a huge one: the World Meeting of Families 2015 Congress, which includes the much-anticipated visit by Pope Francis to Philadelphia.

Creating the organization’s logo, which Milnazik calls “probably the most visible project I’ve worked on” in 35 years in the design business, came about in an unusual way. One  Friday afternoon in 2012, Brian Communications, an agency handling various communications aspects of the congress, called him about submitting a proposal for the logo. The deadline: that Monday. The parameters: Tie in Philadelphia and the concept of family. A few other firms were invited to do the same.

Milnazik got to work immediately, first by researching prior World Meeting of Families logos and then sketching as many ideas as possible, picking several to be developed further. He presented five fully executed concepts.

The winner was the Liberty Bell with a cross at the top. Inside the bell, there are figures of family members. In the background, subtler and larger figures represent additional families and the larger world of families, which some might not notice at first glance.

“The logo had to be bright enough to grab attention—this is not a somber event; it’s celebrating the family—but the colors within the bell had to be subtle enough not to disrupt the bell shape,” he explained. “And it had to have similar tones to create the family within that yellowy-orange look.”

Milnazik, whose firm is based in Rosemont, Pennsylvania, and whose father, Robert, had a design and illustration business in Philadelphia for more than 40 years, welcomes the exposure the logo will bring his business.

“A project I started two and a half years ago is now becoming real,” he continued. “It’s really exciting to be a part of something like this and to have my work in front of people from around the world.”