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Creating Balance

September 11, 2020

Diversity Circles logo

Aaron “Splash” Nelson-Moody, Diversity Circles Collaborator

I was honoured to work on the logo for the Diversity Circles project. The red colour we call temlh; it represents the blood of the earth or the blood of the cedar tree so it’s a sacred colour for us here in Coast Salish territory. You could say it is sort of an inner strength. It’s not completely explained in Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and hard to translate into English but I think it refers to the inner strength that we all have.

If you see an old, old canoe here, there’s not too many around, but they would be painted black on the outside – the kind we take out to sea – so we say that when we go out into the world there is an external strength that we face the world with but it doesn’t really take us anywhere unless we have the inner strength as well. Sometimes they will refer to male and female aspects of ourselves and that needs to be in balance so the inner part of the canoe is painted red and represents that inner strength that gives us heart
and sustains us on those long journeys. We talk about a balance between the two. In designing this I was thinking more about the feminine at BCIT; I wanted to add a bit more of the female energy – in this logo design and in the house post I was a part of with BCIT.

I drew out some elements of the house post into this logo. Some people will tell you it doesn’t mean anything; that those shapes don’t mean anything, and some people will tell you long stories about those shapes. There’s one in the upper right of the design that kind of looks like an eye and they say sometimes we are like that centre circle and we deflect the energy around us like a rock in a stream and we hold fast to who we are. Some people say it is the eye of keke7nex siyam, the eye of our creator. Some people will tell you it is the ripples we make in the world that spread out and interact with other people as the ripples cross each other as if we are all pebbles being dropped into a pond. So some people will say it means absolutely nothing and some people will tell you it means everything.

We wanted to draw on the elements of the house post and reflect on the strong values that hold up the house of BCIT. It was a great honour for me to do that work for you and be a part of the great work you’re doing.