My logo consists of a backpack and a butterfly. It is that simple. But it is not simple in the way that some of my esteemed friends have recommended: I do not have a black and white version; I did not have it created using a one to two color scheme; it is not boring. But despite those minor overlooks it is still very simple in both form and function, but you need to know the story.

I started 2013 off with a five month backpacking trip through South America. It was a bucket list trip and a journey that I had the immense pleasure of sharing with my girlfriend, Irina. We spent three weeks traveling down the Amazon River Basin, celebrated Carnaval in both Salvador and Rio, hiked through the mountains of Southern Patagonia, rafted in Chile, snorkeled in Bonito and explored the surreal landscapes of the Salaar de Uyuuni. But that wasn’t even the best part. Those are just the types of things you post on Facebook to stir up the envy of your friends. They are the travel porn you share in order to get ‘likes’ on Facebook as if it were some kind of comfort food or reassurance for your aimless wanders. So while I enjoyed all of those activities they were but a mere conduit which enabled me to produce the most meaningful travel experiences. I met people; people of different colors, languages, backgrounds and experiences. I ate food; things I couldn’t pronounce, things I never imagined and in places I’ll never forget (good and bad). I worked through adversity; lost items, attempted robbery, language barriers, lack of transportation and sleeping in uncomfortable places. And ultimately, I experienced change. It soon became obvious that the change itself was not isolated within myself but took place in everyone I interacted with as well. Good, bad or indifferent, an exchange took place and ultimately it changed the way I saw travel. It became more than just a fun selfish excursion and instead transformed into a spiritual, self-building pilgrimage.

So what does this have to do with the logo? Well if you haven’t heard, butterflies are the product of one of the most fascinating transformations in nature. Now I, like you, used to believe that the wonderfully feminine butterfly was an icon reserved for little girls’ backpacks and lower back tattoos. But one trip to the Pilpintuwasi Animal Orphanage and Butterfly Farm changed that. The farm, located just outside of Iquitos, Peru, in the Amazon Rainforest, is helping to sustain butterfly populations and gives educational tours to the public. While there I was able to actually see each and every stage in the process: from egg harvesting to caterpillars to the chrysalis stage to emerging butterflies. The most important process, metamorphoses, takes place in the cocoon and the closest thing I have come to experiencing that has taken place in the form of a backpack. My backpack is my cocoon and my major source of growth and change. I don’t have my wings yet but I figure that is probably because there is still a lot of world left to explore. And maybe, just maybe if I travel enough, one day I will transform into something as beautiful as the butterfly and send a ripple effect of positive change throughout the world.

Ivan

All of that aside, I could never have designed such a beautiful logo myself. Luckily I have talented friends… and by friends I mean my buddy Matthew Wordell. If you are in need of some creative muscle behind the computer or camera then contact me and I will put you in touch. Thanks Matt.

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