Masthead - line only
Chris Cairns BDes ‘83

I began working for the Province of Nova Scotia in April 1984. I am currently the Art Director for Communications Nova Scotia.

Throughout my 26 years as a Nova Scotia civil servant, I’ve used my NSCAD education to help fulfill the Communications Nova Scotia mission statement: Helping Nova Scotians know what their government is doing and why.

By combining creativity, cultural sensitivity, and financial restraint as guiding principles, my design work strives to enhance the image of the government and province of Nova Scotia locally, nationally, and internationally.

The Order of Nova Scotia, 2001
The highest honour of the Province of Nova Scotia, the order encourages excellence by recognizing Nova Scotians for outstanding contributions or achievements. The medal is in the form of a stylized mayflower, the provincial floral emblem, bearing the Shield of Arms of Nova Scotia surmounted by the crown. The medal is worn with a ribbon of blue, white, red, and gold—the colours of our provincial flag.

Democracy 250 symbol, 2008
This symbol represents 250 years of representative parliamentary democracy in Nova Scotia, Canada’s first parliamentary democracy. I chose the architectural column as the basis for the symbol. The columns on the facade of Province House literally support the structure of the building. This logo is symbolic of the supporting structure of our democratic society: pillar of strength, representative of all Nova Scotians who have built and maintain our democratic system.

Office of African Nova Scotian Affairs (ANSA), 2004
The symbol is a representation of the mayflower, the official flower of Nova Scotia. The flower is constructed by combining the following elements.

The Star: This stylized star is symbolic in several different ways. The Black Star of Africa has come to symbolize hope and honour. A star is a symbol of emancipation and unity. Historically, the Underground Railroad included well-defined hidden routes and following the bright North Star during the night. In certain stations, a light in the window meant a safe home used as a slave hideaway.

Birds: Birds, shown in the form of Nova Scotia seagulls, are symbols of transcendence, the soul, a spirit, divine manifestation, spirits of the air, spirits of the dead, ascent to heaven, and imagination. Birds represent freedom and are a symbol of fertility. They are also said to carry the souls of ancestors.