The primary intention of the Library Awards is to highlight the amazing variety of programs and services that local branches provide to their diverse communities -- dance and exercise classes, resume workshops, English instruction for immigrants, art and chess classes for children, Skype lectures for home-bound seniors, etc. We could go on forever! Therefore we DO NOT want a logo with a book or books in it. Other things to avoid: anything too "Manhattan" -- this is a program for all five Boroughs -- so no skyline or Big Apple. Also, nothing too kiddie or elementary school -- NYC's libraries are important to people of all ages!
So those are the DON'Ts; now for the DOs:
1. We want something that is elegant and modern, that says "urban cool", but that is also inviting to ALL. Something cosmopolitan yet accessible.
2. The logo should be extremely readable. Crystal clear.
3. One of the things that makes New York, and therefore its branch libraries, remarkable and unique is the fact that there are so many different neighborhoods with their own distinct populations, cultures, and challenges. Excellent branch libraries serve the specific needs of their communities in creative ways, and are responsive to changes in their communities -- whether gradual or overnight, as in the case of Hurricane Sandy, when libraries in affected areas were often HEROIC community centers and service providers to people whose neighborhoods and homes were devastated. New York City's libraries have materials in Russian, Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, Yiddish, Bengali, etc. So we're not just talking Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island, and Queens, we're talking the world! We're also talking about democracy in action, a fulfillment of America's promise of a level playing field. Hopefully this will help for inspiration!