I am designing a University-style coat of arms for a T-shirt. If anyone wants to join in and design their own or talk about coat of arms of Universities feel free to.
All I really need/have settled on are the Mushushu dragons flanking the crest. Let me start by examining some famous University Coat of Arms.
Brock University, in Ontario, Canada. Note the helmet at the top. That seems to be a really popular icon on most of the crests I've seen. The snake surrounding the torch probably represents some sort of New World promotion of freedom and defense of that (Sir Brock died defending Niagara) The Badger and Beaver make this a classic.
I love how they draw the leaves on these things. This one is pretty stunning. It's the coat of arms for Cardiff, and it's got this real Luciferian/Dragon Rouge vibe going on. No idea what it means but it would make a great album cover. And there's that helmet again.
The University of Glasgow. This one is pretty weird. It definately moves away from the helm, animal and leaf generic template. They say:
"The University of Glasgow's crest depicts the legend of St Kentigern or St Mungo, with the addition of the Book of Learning and a representation of the University Mace. The Latin motto on the ribbon - 'Via, Veritas, Vita' - is 'the Way, the Truth, the Life'.
The Mace is the symbol of the University's corporate dignity, it has a silver shaft and a hexagonal head of gold and enamel work. It was made for the University in France in 1465."
The University of New England, very pretty, the latin means "Out Of Wisdom Comes Moderation"
Open University, same standard
Oxford runs far afield with this classy looking thing. I like the crowns and the book. What in the world is the belt for? Beating their students? Or is it some crypto-ouroboros thing?
So I guess the key points here are to pick certain symbols and colors. I have no idea about traditional heraldry, though I can certainly identify the following necessary features:
1. Colors, at least 2
2. Shield - crosses, deltas and their ilk seem popular
3. Flanking animals - they can match or not.
4. Plants - certain flowers or fruits seem to be drawing on old symbological assignments. Acorns represent strength on the U of New England's crowned helm.
5. Motto. This is a neat thing to have. They all seem to have one.
I am going to do my symbology research and return in a bit with some results.