Which seems entirely appropriate since the 94-year-old school at 2335 Chatsworth Blvd. is in the throes of a whole-site modernization.
Graphic designer and PLHS alum Josh Utley worked with principal Hans Becker and staff to freshen the logo’s look.
“The new logo was sketched initially by our art teacher Sean Wells,” said Becker. “We then worked with Josh at Intrepid Network on the concept. He really dug into and cared about this project as he is aware of the history of the Pointer.”
Noting there have been “many incarnations of the Pointer” over the years, Becker pointed out, “We wanted to standardize and modernize the logo and graphics while keeping the historical value paramount. We went through many old yearbooks and looked at typefaces used as well. The sans serif font used on the logo and around school now harken back to the 1920s.”
PLHS is the third oldest high school in the San Diego Unified School District. It was dedicated in 1925 as Point Loma Junior-Senior High school, serving grades seven through 12 with 386 students at its opening.
Utley said redesigning the logo was a labor of love, but also a serious project.
“I digitized the logo, then made 23 revisions with Hans and Brian Carter, their financial person,” said Utley of his finished product: two separate logos, a Pointer head in a circle, and a Pointer pointing with the school’s initials.
“The circle is published right now and is an office logo,” said Utley. “The logo with the actual dog will be used on letterhead and the athletic teams' gear.”
Utley started on the high school logo redesign in April and finished July 24. He was pleased — and somewhat surprised — with the way the collaboration with school administration went.
“Brian was pushing me to move the dog to lean forward more aggressively, when in the original logo it was almost standing up straight,” said Utley. “It went from more of a fun type of thing to more serious and interesting.”
Utley said it was a privilege and honor to redesign his alma mater’s logo.
“I’m really humbled as a designer to be able to have a legacy graphics project like this that will be seen by a lot of people,” he said. “It’s really a great feeling and makes me want to work harder for future opportunities like this. Most of the time you’re working with existing logos. It’s rare that you get to design one for such a large organization that has such a long history.”
Utley apologized for anyone who might be put off some by the logo change.
“Being a Pointer, I was just happy and wanted to share it,” he said of the new logo. “I hope people really enjoy it. We put a lot of thought into it, from the way the dog’s ear looked, to the lack of an eyeball, particularly how far forward the dog’s stance is.”
“We are really proud of the final product and have received tons of kudos,” said Becker. “We look forward to seeing this logo for many years. As we say at PLHS, we are ‘rich in tradition while leading in innovation.’ ”