Jayhawk - Guidelines



The Jayhawk is an iconic presence on the KU campuses and on apparel and other promotional items. It often represents the university in place of or in addition to the KU logo and signature.


Versions of the Jayhawk

The most widely recognized version is the Jayhawk drawn in 1946 by student Hal Sandy, but other historic versions exist. All are federally registered trademarks and are subject to usage rules established by the university.


Clear space and minimum size

Clear space is defined as the specified area of empty space surrounding official KU marks. Clear-space requirements must be observed in all circumstances.


Clear space

The clear space should be one-sixth the height of the Jayhawk (x).


Minimum size

The height of the Jayhawk should not be less than 1/2 inch in print or 55 pixels in digital formats.



Do not stretch, distort, or spin.

Do not animate the trademarked Jayhawks.

Do not obscure the Jayhawk.

Do not delete or alter any elements of the Jayhawk.

Do not create color variations.

Do not reverse the colors. The body should always be dark and the beak light.

Do not use a background that does not provide sufficient contrast.

Do not use the Jayhawk as a pattern.

Do not use drop shadows or background effects unless they are used lightly to increase legibility.

Do not reassign colors.

Do not combine the Jayhawk with other KU marks.

Jawhawk Incorrect
Jawhawk Incorrect

Jayhawk variations

Color variations

Three-color Jayhawk

The three-color Jayhawk in KU blue (PMS 293), crimson (PMS 186), and yellow (PMS 116) is preferred.


One-color Jayhawk

It may also be printed in one-color black or KU blue (PMS 293). When used on a dark background, the Jayhawk should have a white outline to provide contrast. In any one-color application, the body should always be dark.


Grayscale Jayhawk

The grayscale Jayhawk is acceptable only for high-quality print reproduction.

The Jayhawk head is another official KU mark, though our greatest brand equity lies within the complete Jayhawk logo. Use the Jayhawk head mark sparingly. Permission for use must be granted by Marketing Communications.

Use of historic Jayhawks and outdated marks

Throughout KU’s history, the Jayhawk has been illustrated in many ways. Some of these illustrations are familiar and even beloved by the KU community. However, the 2005 illustration with the Trajan KU is an official, trademarked logo for the University of Kansas. This logo is by far the most recognizable element of KU’s visual identity.

The use of other Jayhawk imagery not only confuses audiences outside of the KU community, but dilutes the KU brand. Permission for use must be granted by Marketing Communications. When use is granted, historic Jayhawks must appear with the year of first use centered in sans serif font below the image. Ideally, all six historic Jayhawks should appear together.