The Spring Lake Township Board recently approved a new logo designed by Jillian Garzelloni, 18. Her design will be incorporated into the municipality’s letterhead, vehicles and elsewhere over time, according to Township Supervisor John Nash.
As other municipalities updated their logos, Nash considered the township’s logo — a triangle featuring a seagull, sailboats and the words “Spring Lake Township, Michigan.” He thought about local talented students and then spoke with Jerry Rabideau, a township trustee and Spring Lake Public Schools teacher, about collaborating with students on a new logo.
Rabideau reached out to Jennifer Gwinnup, a visual arts teacher at Spring Lake High School, about the opportunity.
Gwinnup said she looks for opportunities for her students to work with real clients so they can gain a realistic experience of working with people, practicing their presentation skills and gaining feedback. The real-world application provides a meaningful experience because students have an authentic audience and feedback, she said.
As part of a class project last spring, students in Gwinnup’s Design 2 class had the opportunity to create a logo for the township or work for another client. Garzelloni, who graduated earlier this year, said she selected the township logo project because it’s where she lives and she thought it would be fun.
Garzelloni said she enjoyed Nash’s visit to the classroom to help them understand what they were looking for in a logo and to answer questions.
Students researched other municipality logos, created 10 varied hand-drawn logos and used a computer for their final design with three variations. The project took about a month.
Nash said it was difficult to select one logo, but they ultimately chose Garzelloni’s design. Garzelloni said she tried to portray Spring Lake itself in the logo by including water, boats and bike path.
Rabideau noted Garzelloni’s logo is a “timeless piece,” and he believes the opportunity was a great experience for the students.
Garzelloni, now a Grand Valley State University freshman, said having her logo be selected is exciting because she will get to see her work when she comes home.
Gwinnup said Garzelloni is a hard worker and creative, and has designed great pieces during her time at SLHS.
“She had a great eye for aesthetics,” the teacher said.
Garzelloni received a stipend for her efforts, Nash said.