Designed for a Dream: The Meaning of my Mission Patch

I am excited today to have my amazing designer Kristin Peterson write a guest blog about the design of my #MarsOrBust2030 Patch. Kristin has over 20 years of graphic design experience and I am fortunate to have had her support over the past few years. Kristin supports my goals through pro-bono design work. I am so thankful for her expertise, willingness to work with me, and for this awesome guest post!

#MarsOrBust2030Creating a mission patch for a space program, much less an aspiring astronaut, doesn’t come up in my purview of projects. Still, I keep an open mind for the “There’s a First Time for Everything Category” of creative projects. This specific patch design isn’t for NASA or SPACE X or some other private planetary enterprise, it’s for a rising young star, Abigail Harrison, who from a very young age knew in her heart she wanted to be an astronaut.

When I was approached by Abby to create a patch for her #SoyuzAdventure space outreach campaign, I was on board as a creative resource to help not only create Abby’s patch but to create all her campaign collateral including Facebook cover photo, infographic, website graphics and print items too (she has a print ad in MacTech Magazine that a sponsor provided free of charge to help get Abby’s message out.)

What I learned for this special project is that space mission patches have a great deal of meaning and symbolism underlining the design. With the prominent hashtag “MarsOrBust2030,” Abby’s patch has a unique meaning — her ultimate mission lies in the future and she is posed to represent the future generation of space exploration. This future generation is what she calls, The Mars Generation. This became the focus for her patch design.

I first started by illustrating a spacecraft, (a significant element found on many space mission patches), that’s modeled after ORION. This low-orbiting manned craft built by Lockheed Martin for NASA and Astrium for the European Space Agency is designed for missions to the moon, asteroids and our favorite, Mars. In Abby’s patch, ORION is shown in low-orbit over the surface of Mars.

Abby’s ultimate mission has Luca Parmitanomany steps in getting there, one being able to attend the May 28, 2013 Russian Soyuz Launch, invitation provided by her mentor, Astronaut Luca Parmitano. As a wink and a nod of solidarity, I added the sweeping red and white emblems inspired by the Soyuz Launch mission patch to Abby’s patch.

Stars used in mission patch designs also hold specific meanings. For a goal as challenging as Abby’s, there is an on-going need for support and counsel — academically, through encouragement and for opening strategic doors. In her mission patch, the stars shown represent family, friends, teachers, supporters and sponsors who are helping to make Abby’s dream a reality.

The bright quasar in her patch symbolizes the dream realized. If children from all around the world were given the encouragement, support and resources to aspire and focus on their dreams as Abby has, who knows the amazing developments that could transpire. To be sure, all our futures would benefit and be as bright.

Get a Mission Patch – Join the #SoyuzAdventure

To get your very own #MarsOrBust2030 Astronaut Abby collectible mission patch (and other amazing rewards too) you can visit Abby’s page. Hurry, her campaign ends in just a couple weeks and the patches will be gone! This is your chance to support Abby and Fuel the Future too!

Kristin Maija PetersonKristin Maija Peterson runs all operations and functions as idea generator for Grand Ciel Branding & Design. Her mind-set is to “Think Big” for her clients and loves the impact good design and branding can bring. She is passionate about creating unique brand personalities that help build recognition and work elegantly into her clients’ overall marketing landscape. Kristin describes herself as an illustrative art director, artist, writer, closest biologist, environmentalist, perpetual student and animal lover. Besides authoring posts for Grand Ciel Branding & Design, she writes and showcases her artwork at 52 Weeks: Word With Water & Color. Bio from Grand Ciel Branding and Design.


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