On my first trip to British Columbia, I fell in love with Tofino. We rented a little A-frame cabin on the edge of the ocean, and the owner said, “people like you come west and never go back”. I did go back – to my family, to my job in the city. But the impression Tofino left was strong. Ten years later, I moved west – not to Tofino, but close enough to drive there for a weekend. 

So it was great to have an opportunity to develop a logo/wordmark for Tofino, in close collaboration with Strategy Director, Caroll Taiji of Taiji Brand Group

The challenge: to capture the Spirit of the Place – wind, waves, sun & mist – magestic rainforests and surreal bogs – a natural and elemental place. In the middle of it all, a unique town with a personality all its own. What an honour and a challenge – and how to represent all that in one wordmark? 

It needed to be textured, gestural, completely original – in keeping with an area shaped by weather and the elements and inhabited by hardy, adventurous souls. Using India Ink, folded pens and a wide ruling pen, I wrote. And wrote – trying to capture the essence of wind, surf and trees. I used smooth and rough papers, but watercolour paper added appropriate resistance and natural texture to the work. 

Here's some of the roughs – Caroll marked her favorites with a heart: 
Below: Lightly retouched version that Taiji Brand Group sold to a happy client. 
However, in the world of digital files, nothing is sacred  – and successive companies that have worked with the logo have made their own edits. Somewhere, they reverted to the original (unretouched) version. Most notably, they have made it all one (heavier) weight, with less texture. Still, I am happy to see the logo in use and I think it works great on their website (
The logo as used below by Primal Communications. Logo as adapted by Bully Design Co
It even finds its way onto pumpkins!  (Photos courtesy of Tourism Tofino.)
Such is the life of a logo! 
Visit Tourism Tofino’s website to see this logo in its natural environment.