To show there are no hard feelings over the rejection of the Dick Tracy design proposed by the Heck Of A Guy blog as the new McHenry County Seal,1 I have devised a design format that would be in keeping with the seeming consensus among those making the decisions that a seal with multiple partitions to display multiple elements is the way to go.
As demonstrated in the six sample seals below,2 counties often opt to use many images, and organizing them into 3 or 4 compartments is not unusual.
The McHenry County flag, in fact, follows this scheme.
In my incomplete survey of county seals, the largest number of same-size divisions found a seal are the five slices of the pizza pie model used for the Hamilton County (Florida) Seal. This seal has a bonus feature, a sixth, somewhat smaller piece in the center in the shape of the county containing only the date 1827.
By implementing a unique and asymmetric segmentation, the Los Angeles County Seal comprises seven compartments, no two of which are identical combinations of shape and orientation.
Even these models, however, are suboptimal because, as simple geometric calculations indicate, a circle is an inefficient completer of a square space.
As shown in the diagram above, circular seals cannot use the areas colored red.
Clearly, a seal that is square maximizes the space available for content.
That arithmetical insight, however, yielded only squares within squares, a pattern which seemed a bit severe. Some ornamentation was needed.
Happily a model suggested itself, and now it’s time to play …
McHenry County Squares
With this template, the McHenry County Seal would have nine compartment – which makes it at least two compartments better than any other county seal.
In this example, I’ve replaced a few of the personnel from Hollywood Squares with McHenry reference points: the cupola of the opera house in the middle left box, the current seal in the middle, and the emblematic cow and corn in the middle of the bottom row.
Of course, the Board would choose the symbols to fill the boxes in the actual seal. Given that (1) the rap against Dick Tracey was that he was a cartoon and (2) none of the stars of Hollywood Squares are cartoons, the County may want to retain one or more of them for the Seal. The phrase, “I’ll take Charley Weaver to block” does have a McHenry ring to it._____________________
- See Dick Tracy And The Case Of The McHenry County Seal Of Doom [↩]
- These seals were previously used in How To Create An Official Seal – Part 2: Credentials [↩]