The objective of this project was to update the certificate that new master masons receive upon completion of their three degrees by adding more meaning, detail, and colour all the while maintaining the rich symbolism and tradition of the Grand Lodge of Manitoba.
The certificate is deliberately busy and loaded with imagery and coded text to encourage the viewer to look for other less noticeable elements and for deeper meaning. Symbolism relating to the three degrees of Freemasonry is embedded throughout the design. A lot of research went into the design and every element, no matter how small or obscure, has significance. The large circle towards the bottom left is where the Grand Lodge of Manitoba's seal is placed. Edwardian Script was chosen as the main body typeface as it resembles the beautifully handwritten script found on old masonic certificates. The sacrifice of readability for style and elegance seemed appropriate for this design. While the final result is colourful, I made a conscious effort not to make things look gaudy, choosing some slightly muted colours and keeping the bold colours to smaller areas so as not to overpower. Parchment paper was chosen to give texture and lend an air of authenticity. Many old masonic certificates are quite large, I chose 11x17 as a good standard sized paper that would continue the tradition of a larger certificate.