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One nice thing about symbolism is that it can be an extra "reward" for those who manage to catch it, yet if it goes over the heads of some, there's no harm done. Those who do manage to spot it get the satisfaction of being that much closer to the story, the organization, or whatever the symbol represents.

 

Sometimes a symbol can work on multiple levels. Your description of Amazon's logo (the little curvy arrow) describes it well enough, though they add an extra symbolic level when it's used with the name Amazon. It's not just dropped randomly under the word, but deliberately goes from the A to the Z, symbolizing that they've got it all.

 

I spent a while coming up with a distinctive logo for my website, which likes to emphasize the Bible's background and history. A lamp with a flame is a nice symbol, but it's been done everywhere. A historically accurate lamp for me would be even better. I eventually chose two historically accurate lamps, one from Old Testament times, one from the New Testament, burning together, with a single flame. (It's also the picture on my profile, here). Most people won't spot it, but it's still a fun, warm picture, and the few who do recognize it will hopefully appreciate it.

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36 minutes ago, Wes B said:

if it goes over the heads of some, there's no harm done.

That's a great point. I, for one, hadn't thought about the swish of the Amazon logo not extending to the end of the word--but I only get a package from them maybe once a year!

At the same time, some levels of symbolism don't need to be consciously absorbed to be effective. Your lamps are going to give a viewer a feel for the diversity of the ancients even if they have no clue each is representing a different time period. And the joined flame is something we see often enough with weddings to understand the reasoning there!

Do you have a digitized logo with these lamps you can use on your books and printables? That would be fun to see.

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5 hours ago, Celebrianne said:

That's a great point. I, for one, hadn't thought about the swish of the Amazon logo not extending to the end of the word--but I only get a package from them maybe once a year!

 

I don't order much from them either. Nowadays, we see the arrow more under the word Prime on the package, anyway, whether we have prime or not. But on all the older boxes, there it is, A to Z...

 

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At the same time, some levels of symbolism don't need to be consciously absorbed to be effective. Your lamps are going to give a viewer a feel for the diversity of the ancients even if they have no clue each is representing a different time period.

 

That's a really great point, though a real purist would note that the lamps are from radically different times, and wouldn't normally be seen together. The left lamp is a Herodian lamp: strictly New testament. The right lamp is a Canaanite lamp, still widely used through Old Testament times (and horrendously easy to spill!!!) Fortunately I shot the picture using water, and photoshopped the flame in, later. I'd likely have burned down my house, otherwise. I would guess that the fire brigades in Old Testament cities were far busier than in New Testament times...

 

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And the joined flame is something we see often enough with weddings to understand the reasoning there!

 

I hadn't thought of that, at least consciously, but that's a great thought.

 

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Do you have a digitized logo with these lamps you can use on your books and printables? That would be fun to see.

 

The closest I have is a super simple line drawing on a papyrus'ey background that I made simple 'cuz it has to be drawn out in about a 2 second animation. That's part of a slightly longer video clip intended as the intro for upcoming YouTube videos.  The sketch then rapidly crossfades into the actual picture, then crossfades again to the individual video title. here are a few frames:

 

3LampSequencex1000.png.4a872637723a38bf924c2cbf608c0ebd.png

 

Since we'll bore a viewer if we don't get right into the video, the animation of the drawing lasts only the 2 sec, the crossfade takes one more, and then almost immediately crossfades into the title. From your comment though, it might be worthwhile to make the sketch slightly crisper & more detailed, so it can also appear elsewhere rather than just a one usage throwaway. I'll look into ways to add clear but simple detailing. Thank you...

 

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15 minutes ago, Celebrianne said:

And I never thought about it being easy to spill with the OT style lamp. Thanks @Wes B

 

I only found it out by moving and posing the lamps repeatedly. If you examine the picture closely, there's not a whole lot of water left in the Canaanite lamp; it's mostly just wet pottery. I'd spilled most of the water out doing earlier shots. I'll bet the original users never filled them very full, and i was just naïve from the start..

 

The Canaanite lamp is made to be thrown together, fast and cheap. It's basically a bowl, which is the easiest shape to make, with a pitcher-top, formed with the fingers into the wet clay. Even with the real primitive potter's wheels, I'll bet a potter could spin out a dozen in an hour.

 

The Herodian lamp is actually a nice little work of craftsmanship, designed for safety. There's no visible scale in the pic, but they're sized just right to be cupped in a hand, making them a lot harder to drop. The nearly closed top means you could move around fairly vigorously without spilling oil, unless it's filled near to the top. And if you look really closely at the tip near the wick hole, you'll notice two side-wings, one sticking out either end, making it hard to set it down with the wick too too close to something that might catch fire.

 

There was probably a lot of thought into avoiding repeats of past fires that went into its design. It's pretty amazing how, given only the most primitive materials, people could compensate by using cleverness...

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On 5/29/2021 at 9:49 PM, RockyMtn Gal said:

Based on your article, it sounds like I need to be checking my email...

I barely said anything in the email; the article has more thoughts than the original. So it's all good! 

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