Organic 3D

Organic 3D

Here's something new for 2008: we will be seeing 3d effects in logo design that will reach different places and stimulate different viewers who are craving for a new, fresh look! Polish those lenses and see 3D escalate to a higher level!

Let's take an example. You're seeing the Silverlight logo for the first time. Your eyes are trying to absorb every feature and then-you suddenly react. What's your first reaction? A breathless "WOW"? Do you find yourself saying "aha"? Does the Silverlight logo design trigger a feeling in you, arousing a desire to actually want to see the product that's behind that logo? That reaction was what the creators of this corporate logo were aiming for.

The logo designer starts with a very basic shape that is applied to a simple transparency effect. This can lead to a more complicated process, but one thing you must remember is that the end result should look as organic as possible. Take your distortion tool for a good spin!

We welcome this type of logo design because it stands out and it tells us that it's not "run of the mill." You see, the 3d bubbles and transparency effects - which were overused - were getting really boring. There is just one downside: ''eye catching '' logos were appearing on the scene and becoming more sophisticated but they are not necessarily the easiest to print.

In fact, the capability to print the logo exactly as it looks on screen is a frequent request that stands at the basis of corporate logo creation. Is it possible that the constant technological development that now allows us to accurately reproduce a design on different surfaces will generate changes in the classic laws of logo design?

Technology organizations that produce and market groundbreaking products and services use this type of company logo design. By using the "organic 3d" effect, logo creators avoid that cold image look which is so typical of other companies' logos in the technology field. This type of logo is not only eye catching, but is also friendly. And here's a bonus: the lighting effect is fantastic!

Logo Swoosh

Waves - The New Swooshes

That's it - no more swooshes! After years of being number one, swooshes have now been replaced by the so-called waves. Do you see these waves in the above logos? Top graphic designers use them to inject more flexibility and flow into the design. To highlight the idea of movement, logo designers execute a fade technique from one color to another for this type of logo design. It does not matter if a single wave is used or is incorporated into the design; the round shapes give it flexibility so that the viewer gets a sense of movement and of communication. "Waves" are a good strategy to suggest the feelings of movement, transfer, quickness and connection. They are not easy to use, but if you master the technique, you can produce and optimize the effect. "Waves" are now IN - they have replaced swooshes, swirls and other curves you find in logo designs everywhere. Could waves be the new swooshes? Will they dominate the scene in a few years? Long time ago we thought swooshes were trendy. Then they rose in popularity so much they become a big NO NO. And today, waves are hugging the limelight. Will this be the new trend? We shall see!

Logo Design Web 2.0

"Web 2.0" Logos

Designers often hear the term "web 2.0" from their customers who ask for this specific type of logo. The term Web 2.0 actually refers to certain technologies (Ajax, Ruby, etc). The thing is, can we really say that there's a new trend in graphic design, the web 2.0 design?

It seems to be the case these days. A web2.0 logo is now synonymous to a modern and trendy logo, and this is why we find an impressive number of tutorials on the Net that allow designers to transform existing logos into web 2.0 logos. What characteristics do web 2.0 logos have? They have bright colors, color levels, cute, icons, 3D effects, shiny surfaces, shadows and reflexions. The fonts are simple and most of them rounded. In some cases the color levels, shines and 3D effects are also applied to the lettering.

These effects must be used very carefully, because we have seen countless cases where the logo designer uses these elements to make a logo look good but neglects to give the concept the necessary attention it deserves.

Some of these logos are beautiful. They catch your eye instantly and give you the feeling of sophistication and technology. But is the web 2.0 logo design trend strictly related to the current popularity of web 2.0 technology? Will this trend fade when something else replaces web 2.0 technology?

Interestingly enough, we are sure that this type of logo can also be called the "apple type logo". We are all familiar with the Apple logo; in fact we were astonished when in 1998, Apple gave up the "rainbow logo" and launched the "glass Apple logo ". This logo has turned out to be one of the most famous brands in the world, and it "stirred up the crowd" without any doubt when it was first launched. The fresh, innovative 3D technical image was one influential factor, but its bright and warm qualities contributed to the evolution of logo design and the way a brand should be perceived.

Today we are flooded with 2.0 web logos that unfortunately have become too common. We'll have to wait and see whether they are here to stay or are just a passing trend. What do you think?

Transparency in logo design

Transparency in logo design

We'll say this right away: transparency has always been fashionable. Designers often use transparency, thanks to the notion of elegance that it communicates. Transparency allows the combination of different design elements offering the viewer a special image. With the help of transparency you can create perspectives, suggest the ideas of growth, development, combination and connection.

Some famous designers are of the opinion that only inexperienced logo designers use transparency and color levels. We disagree. Transparency enables you to create some unique effects that definitely catch the attention of the viewer. Transparency makes the design brighter, and the subtle transition from one element of the design to another provides the illusion of a bright spot. Take a close look at the DarienLibrary logo. What better suggestion would you make regarding the existence of additional elements without the help of transparency?

Minimal Logos

"Underground" Typography - Minimal Fonts

Examine the logos above. Have you seen similar ones before? These are logos that we have often found on the sites of Typographic Artists over the last few years. Who would have thought, however, that they would become mainstream by the year 2007?

These logos are based on minimal fonts that are achieved by using as few elements as possible such as basic shapes (e.g. a circle arch for the Wends logo). This technique is based on simple shapes, exact proportions, and a boundless love for minimalist design. This type of logo design will suit some people and companies perfectly but it continues to create confusion among conservatives.

Here's a question: can this type of design lead to the development of a good logo? Most people would be inclined to say no, especially if the classic principles of logo design - Legibility and Readability - need to be considered. It's true that logos based on the so- called Minimal Fonts do not provide immediate conveyance of the message. However, most agree that they do manage to catch the viewer's attention, provoking a sentiment or desire to "figure out" what the message is.

Those who are looking at such logos will immediately want to find out the name of the company and to grasp the meaning of these logos. Furthermore, there is the element of shock when viewers see something new and very different from what is usually seen on the web.

You could even say that this type of logo often proves to be more efficient than a logo that merely conforms to classic rules. This statement is relevant to a discussion on the emerging new rule: the more a design is different to what is happening in the industry at a given moment, the better and more efficient a logo is. Logo designs based on minimal fonts require a long-term experience in graphic design and typography; they are also not yet suited for all kinds of customers. We see an increasing number of them being used on album covers of good electronic music, on web sites that target the indie audience, or on web sites of "cult" graphic design studios.

It is our opinion that this is so far the coolest trend for 2008. We hope to see more logos that are created using this particular trend.

New Rainbow / Color Scale

New Rainbow / Color Scale

We've seen a thousand rainbows in our lifetime. Yet, each time we see one, we can't help but stare admiringly at the sky even for just a few seconds. We feel that sentiment of wanting to "chase rainbows" as the lyrics of a song go.

Classic rainbow-colored semicircles have been widely used in the last decade but alas, have quickly become passé. However, the fascination with the full color scale continues. Lately, we have been seeing a lot of "rainbow colors" that are being manipulated in a variety of ways. Most designers will use transparency in order to highlight the visual effects and to enable the fusion of colors, thus obtaining an impressive shift from one color to another. Techniques like vivid colors, shifting from shades of red to blue facilitated by an entire spectrum of color, and especially the usage of a dark background to highlight each color lead to outstanding logos that will always be attractive to the human eye.

These logos convey the concepts of sophistication, technology and freshness. With a nearly infinite number of possibilities for combining colors, the visual effect is invariably special. What is really spectacular is that although the classical rainbow representation has come to an end, the message still remains the same: there are no boundaries - nothing is impossible. This trend proves that using classic elements will generate novelty and will also bring about up-to-date and striking directions.

Logos Hightech

Sci-Fi Fonts

In logo design the font frequently serves to strengthen the message as conveyed by the image. But what about the typographic logos? In this particular case, choosing the right font is crucial. Many of these logos can be memorable. With the development of the number of personal computers per capita, we are now witnessing the rise of a new category of logos , using what the industry refers to as Sci-Fi fonts.

Whether they are the creation of famous designers such as RayLarabie and Wim Crouwel or are projects produced in the typography classes of some diligent students, we have seen an ever-increasing number of these fonts over the last few years.

In the beginning of 2000 and later, we remember graphic design teachers recommending infrequent usage of these fonts. Their reason was that it was just a passing trend. What happened was the opposite. It seems they're digging their feet in.

The frequent use of sci-fi fonts, with straight edges and simple shapes has imposed itself as a new trend in logo design. We've seen various designers "play" with these fonts in their logos: they either change the font shape or create a new one in programs such as FontLab.

Let's take a look at the example of Compaq. Compaq chose this type of font for its company logo redesign project in 2007. It clearly conveys the company's new slogan: "See why Compaq gets people talking". See how that slogan is conveyed in the shape of the Q? See the Talk Box? That's an example of a logo that clearly conveys the core message by means of wording only. After all, less is more, isn't it?

Leaves Logos

Leaves Logos

No matter which logo design collection you browse through, you will notice that they have all been "invaded" by leaves over the last few years. Leaves here and there, leaves everywhere! You sit and wonder why. Could this be the result of a common concern for the environment and the harmful effects of pollution? Is it because green is trendy? Or are humans aching for nature because they sit all day in their office cubicles facing their computer screens making them crave for the natural outdoors?

Leaves have become synonymous with creativity, originality, and innovative thinking. We also find leaves in company logos even if the companies are not engaged in the business of nature or the environment. But the key notion here is that the use of leaves somehow "tames" the message conveyed.

Lots of web 2.0 sites feature leaves making spring-green the preferred web 2.0 color. We're not talking about the classic image of the leaves themselves but about their stylization, especially under the form of rectangles with rounded edges - this is a modern representation in accordance with modern design trends.

These logos are usually simple and leave the viewer with a pleasant image. Another benefit is that these company logos are very catchy. The thing we have to be wary of is the overwhelming invasion of leaves - they are now overused. Tutorials have already appeared, showing how to create a leaf logo. Will this trend last or will it lead to the need for raking the leaves and sending them off to the dump site? What do you think?

Logo Designs Newborns

The "Ugly" 80's

Take a look at the logo designs above. What's your first reaction? They bowl you over and leave you speechless - and somewhat confused don't they?

These logos don't have beautiful shapes, shadows, mirrored reflections, warm colors, or icons that signify something; they look like the result of some kid playing around mindlessly. So why would anyone wish to have such a logo?

The explanation is simple: this type of logo design is very different and will definitely stand out by sheer reason of being totally different. But if we look back to the 80's which was a period of strange geometric shapes and neon colors - these types of logos came about and earned the reputation of spearheading the invasion of "cute logos".

The emergence of this trend can also be attributed to a mighty comeback of the 80's in fashion ,interior and industrial design. Some consider these logos to be modern and futuristic; others think of them as plain ugly. But let's not be too harsh in our criticism because the mere fact that they are so talked about is noteworthy enough.

There are numerous articles that picked apart the London 2012 logo. Although many agree that the 80's have not demonstrated excellence in graphic design and people severely criticized this trend, we should nevertheless consider the advantages that this type of logo has to offer: first, it stands out and gets noticed; second, it's totally different than anything we've seen before; and third, it's never boring. In fact, we'll even venture out to say that it's outrageous, exciting and rude. Each of the colors symbolizes an explosion of energy, action and sound in accordance to our living present. The message is quickly and brutally conveyed and it doesn't require thinking on the part of the viewer. In other words, an alluring and attractive no-brainer!

We'll add that this trend has revolutionized logo design and fueled the process of creativity by imposing new rules and redefining what's beautiful. Of course, there are still risks involved regarding this type of approach, the highest risk being the inability, on the part of the viewer, to understand the message. Companies that cannot afford an expensive publicity budget like the one for Wacom or London 2012 are particularly susceptible to this risk. So designers, pay attention! "It's pure attitude, designed to intrude and degrade."
(Tony Spaeth)

The New Crest

The New Crest

New Crest logos have been around in the last few years. The year 2008 though will sound out the trumpets - New Crests go Mainstream!! With the clever combination of medieval symbolism and urban culture graphic elements, the New Crest logos appealed to the youth when they first appeared. Eventually, they were also adopted and embraced by the extreme sports and boarding communities everywhere. At the same time they were used by well known graphic designers for big clients like MTV etc.

Maybe it's the contrast between the old and new - novelty fonts against medieval lions as an example; another example would be the ancient decorations versus modern objects.

Collage is the main process behind these emblems, blending the right elements to strike the right chord. And if you think about it, isn't this what graphic design is all about anyway?

We tend to like new crests and think it's a good experiment to try with the right client in 2008 and the years to come. One word of caution: new crest logos are not for beginners. Designers need to get some experience under their belt first before taking a crack at these logos. It takes a trained eye and oodles of creativity and imagination to take new crest logos into new highs!

 
COMMENTS (94)   |   JUMP TO MOST RECENT COMMENT >>
your comments in regards to transparency are themselves transparent. for instance, how would you imagine the darien library logo reproduced in white paint when needed to be painted on a golf course or tennis court?

the reason experienced designers keep away from transparency is because it's not as robust as a solid.
adam
1.02.2008 at 05:02
very cool... being in chicago i see that olympics logo all the time
hellyeahdude.com
12.02.2008 at 08:02
I have to sort of agree. Transparency is seductive, but I have been shot down in the past for proposing it. Are clients ready to produce their materials better? A transparent logo requires a bold client with a top-notch brand manager. We should be able to expect more effort from graphics producers, offset press professionals and clients.
christa
12.02.2008 at 11:02
Have to agree with adam on this one. Unless the logos shown also have one color, non-transparency options they're not nearly flexible enough for PR events and such.

I'm personally tired of seeing leaf based logos. Sometimes its appropriate but mostly it seems lazy.

I like the idea of the New Crest but not all are well executed and most, for whatever reason, have the spray paint aesthetic.
barry
12.02.2008 at 01:02
This is a great list of 2008 Logo Design Trends. Dugg and Stumbled :)
Jacob
13.02.2008 at 02:02
I really think these "trends" are quite bad and should be nipped in the bud. A good logo can be represented in a single colour, clear and have some connection to what it is a logo for. These are awful, been done to death in the last few years, and not good designs.
D.
13.02.2008 at 07:02
I disagree with the trends being rubbish...yes, they have been used a lot and we know so because they show up in mainstream media a lot like they were...an actual trend. Trend for me does not imply the best, jus, what is popular. Some I really like, ie, ugly 80's is, largely (Olimpicly) ugly, but a good designer could take it t the next..or retro, level and exploit it. Transparency I see as fit for web in all but cases such as Zopa's, were gradient adds one shade...it'll still require heavier printing and less b/w flexibility, it all depends on the logo's target audience and media.
Yaco Roca
18.02.2008 at 09:02
Aesthetics aside for one moment (all of the above are indeed relevant and on track), aren't you missing the most important trend of the moment? With an ever increasing pressure to show substance and security in the face of troubled markets globally, there is a huge resurgence and emphasis in the use of logos to herald and reinforce what the brand stands for whether that be a leaf or GPS. Trust and confidence is a valued if not somewhat concealed aesthetic.
Ben
25.02.2008 at 04:02
hello,

Your work is very nice.
simran
27.02.2008 at 12:02
the idea of a trend as it applies to logo design is a bit of an oxymoron. a logo is meant to communicate the brand promise of the company, not to be a reflection of the stylistic whim of the designer assigned to the project.

as a designer, i find this sort of view of logo design to be somewhat offensive.
max
27.02.2008 at 01:02
I tend to agree with max (although I wouldn't go so far as to say I'm "offended"). Logo design needs to transcend recent trends. That is, unless you don't mind rethinking corporate identity every few years. No logo lasts forever, but the best logos are very primal, reaching beyond whatever the contemporary whims are. You can't avoid contemporary style altogether (nor should we ignore our new design capabilities which weren't available in the past). But logos need to be flexible, adaptable, and retain their visual content no matter what medium they are used. None of the Web 2.0 designs or more complex designs (the Silverlight logo in particular), really fulfill that. Aesthetically, they're pleasing. But they are lousy *logos*.
ern
28.02.2008 at 09:02
I still think those "ugly" 80s logo are just that ... but maybe it's because I personally don't care too much for neon colors and abstractions that don't seem to come from anywhere/have a message. If it was an abstraction of something familiar/understandable, maybe that would work. I can see them conveying a sense of playfulness but for some reason the colors - to me - convey a sense of superficiality (which I find unattractive).
Good discussion on them though ... and some other interesting trends in logos this year. ...

In general, the "trend" discussion seem to describe the techniques well ... but it's up to the designer to choose what symbols/ideas to convey ... if you're simply relying on a trendy techniques to say that the company is up-to-date & "cool," then the company image will fade as soon as that trend does. If however the designer comes up with symbols that uniquely describe the company's vision - and what distinguishes them from the rest of the market - then I think those trendy techniques might be useful illustration techniques to explore (along with others). ... I think any designer who relies on "who's cool" and "let's try to be like them" is not going to make a mark that really stands out and has it's own personality. I think a good logo – as in a good leader – knows exactly what they like, what they'd like to communicate, has a company vision for years down the road, and has the boldness to help lead people there.
Paul
29.02.2008 at 10:02
sci-fi fonts seem to be very sleek.organic 3d cann't be so easily detectable on a neon sign board. Size of the display also makes an effect on the appearance of logo. A logo which 'll be mostly displayed on advetisement hoardings must be differently designed from a logo on a book or a computer or on a T-shirt.
raulf
29.02.2008 at 10:02
I prefer logos that are as graphically timeless as possible. Remember when woodcut typography was the rage two years ago? Trendy design is just that: Trendy. "Of the moment." IMHO it speaks of a lazy client who wants to look like everyone else while paying the designer to make him stand out from the crowd. Pointless, nu? Look at the standard Coca Cola logo. It has world-wide instant recognition, it doesn't look like it was designed in any particluar era or by any specific school of design.

The designs I see here are well executed technically but they're dated and will be out of fashion in a few years.
KenWritez
29.02.2008 at 05:02
Funny to see the two sides of viewpoint if a trend is a good or bad thing. I just think it is, it's like fashion, an expression of a specific time and some people have fun being part of it (and some don't know otherwise), and then again others like to work right against it only to create the next trend. And then are those who completely remove themselfs from all of this and try not to work for or against a trend but to what they can find within themselfs (and their team). I do not believe there is an absolute right or wrong way to do it.
Marlyse Comte
1.03.2008 at 11:03
Were the "ugly 80's" logos supposed to be more confusing than any of the others? At least they're 2D, so I can see what they are. The "organic 3D" set, for example, look far more confusing to me. I don't even know what they're supposed to be. (A kid playing around with a camera and an old screensaver?)
ken
1.03.2008 at 12:03
AL - A VERY GOOD POINT VERY WELL MADE!
jason
1.03.2008 at 04:03
While some of these logos are visually impressive, I have to add this comment: Following a "trend" can sometimes pull you away from some of the real purposes of a logo. In my opinion, the logo first and foremost needs to communicate the corporate name, and secondly attempt to communicate what the company does. I'm not saying you shouldn't follow trends because there are reasons for doing so, all I'm saying is each logo needs to be considered individually, and a logo shouldn't be designed in a certain style just because you happen to like that style, or because it is the growing trend.

Overall, interesting opinions/insights here both from the article and the comments.
Mike
1.03.2008 at 04:03
I'm with you on the 'new crests' - they're appearing everywhere, very hip - it's like rockstar meets royalty
agent aardvark
1.03.2008 at 04:03
I'll never look at the London 2012 in the same way once someone pointed out that it resembles Lisa Simpson doing something very naughty... ;-)
pl
1.03.2008 at 05:03
I agree with Al. We create logos that look good when reproduced in any media ~ print, billboard, web ~ even when embroidered on a hat or t-shirt. Logos should be first functional, then aesthetic.
stan
1.03.2008 at 10:03
one trend you forgot - stupid birds or bird icons.
ron
2.03.2008 at 11:03
There are also many many logos with vector birds & clean typo
required
3.03.2008 at 06:03
While I agree with most of the article about the "new" trends, I do want to add that not all companies have the money to reproduce these logos in so many colors or 3d effects.

When many of the designs that you show are converted to 2-color or 1-color (such as black) they do not reproduce well or convey the same message. What ever happened to functionality and design being incorporated together?
jan hewlett
3.03.2008 at 03:03
Whoever said "what would the Darien Library logo look like it if it were painted on a football field." I think the answer is in your question!

Not every logo is going to be the next Apple logo. I would bet most of these logos won't have any other visibility than on the web, in print, and *maybe* television.

Come on, the Dairen Library is *never* going to paint a football field. Not every logo has to be a Tide or a Crest or an IBM. Break out of your Logo Design 101 rules.
james
3.03.2008 at 03:03
Agreed, a logo should look good in multiple formats; however, in today's digital world, if a logo's primary canvas is the computer screen with a specific audience, shouldn't one's design reflect this and not worry so much about how it looks on the black and white letterhead?
David
3.03.2008 at 09:03
If I had to pick a logo to go on a billboard or be displayed on a large canvas I would pick the London 2012 logo purely for it stand out value and its clearly defined colours. However ugly it may look shrunken down on a PC screen it still holds a wow factor when you see it in its true giant format.
James
4.03.2008 at 05:03
There are a lot of logo design and trend experts commenting here. Perhaps the designers of the above logos need to re-evaluate their chosen professions, because it seems they sure don't know the first thing about logos.
Cmon relax
5.03.2008 at 12:03
This is a round up of "scene" in logo design and to that end is an interesting article. Logo designing is a lot harder than making an icon take on a fashionable effect. For me it is first about the idea, then the execution. Both areas need equal attention.

I rather like the photoshop icon, it looks like a speech bubble and an eye. Good concept if you ask me.
Steve
6.03.2008 at 11:03
This blog has created an excellent discussion about and around these brandings. Personally, the crest thing is seems old since its a branch of the typical grunge photoshop brushes and comes off just as meaningless.
emily
7.03.2008 at 11:03
I'm not sure why these are presented as coming trends for 2008--many of these are reasonable clean executions of worn-out, concept-lacking ideas (such as the web 2.0 look and the 3d look). Maybe these trends will continue, but barely any of them are cutting-edge, and I wouldn't say they're really a design achievement. It seems like most companies are following everyone else--waiting for the established "web 2.0" or "tech" look is established, then jumping on the bandwagon. I think successful identity design should differentiate the company from everyone else.
Peter
7.03.2008 at 11:03
All the talk of timelessness & maintaining historical impact in regards to logo design speaks of seeing the world like it was 20-30 years ago, when media exposure was limited to tv, print & radio and internet presence was still just a dream. Creating a logo today that will last 10 -15 years is like trying to create a company for that logo that will last just as long. With the overabundance of competitiors in just about every industry and field, re-branding ones self in order to maintain and advance positioning/message is not just the current business climate, it's going to be a design "trend" for the forseeable future. Most new organizations, business, venture, etc. simply do not have the luxury of just sitting on it's one identity forever in the hopes that it will sustain itself & communicate the same message for the lifetime of it's existence. Just isn't going to happen. So when you speak of creating something primal and elemental that will endure for generations to come, realize that the era Coke & McDonalds & Apple is over (all of which have tweaked their logos over the years, minor or not).
Eric
7.03.2008 at 02:03
i agree that the trends are rubbish. a needs to be representable in 1-color. ask a designer who went to school.
nick
8.03.2008 at 12:03
This is a great post. I agree with all of the trends you pointed out, but I do think that as designers we need to be extra careful not to let our logo designs of 2008 fall drastically into these categories. A logo needs to be timeless (and also easily represented in black only)
Keep up the good posts.
Bob
9.03.2008 at 11:03
Elephants are going to be *the* trend in 2009!
Tim Van Damme
13.03.2008 at 11:03
Personally, if I'm not able to deliver a logo project when completed in CMYK, Spot Color, Grayscale and 100% b&w lineart versions - then I I'm not sure that I am delivering a logo that has the necessary versatility that would be required for all company uses for the next 2-3 years.

I would rather think through most probable uses at the beginning than have the client come back to me after trying to have a single, overly complicated logo version embroidered.
chris
14.03.2008 at 07:03
It's obvious from these "design trends" that anyone with a computer can call themselves a designer. The wide availability of graphic software does not equate a design education, and it is demeaning to the design profession. Branding is about conceptualizing what an organization or group stands for, what makes them different. It is NOT about the flavour of the month.
redSAID!
18.03.2008 at 01:03
your take on what web 2.0 is is slightly off, but nonetheless nice article.
scott
23.03.2008 at 02:03
me parecen muy buen ala pagina en si, en especial los logos presentados son secillos pero llamativos, me impresiona como manejan los colores y la simplicidad de las formas
mileidys
2.04.2008 at 06:04
Interesting article and great comments. It's really funny how people think design is purely how things look. I try and bare in mind the following when it comes to logo design:

- Communicate clearly
- Make it memorable
- Make it work across a variety of media (adds value to your design)
- Be 'future-proof' to a certain extent
- Answer a specification, rather than an aesthetic subjective preference set by the likes and dislikes of the designer

There are, of course, loads of stuff that needs consideration per project, but the above I think applies to all projects ...

Just me' twopence worth ('',)
kevadamson
7.04.2008 at 06:04
"can it be photocopied? will it work in black & white?" Am I hearing this correctly? This is 2008- for better or worse, its time for designers to rethink logo design. Designers have to start looking at the future, and as they do, they'll see that interactivity is the key word. The monitor is a vastly different beast to a sheet of paper. The established do's and dont's of print design need to be learned, but as they become increasingly irrelevant, they need only be learned so that a designer can know when to break them! Can a brand own a font or a colour anymore? Is a single mark enough? The Olympic logo is getting a lot of criticism, but at least its doing its job and is actually evoking an emotional response! When was the last time a logo was noticed like that?
jimmy
8.04.2008 at 11:04
These logos look great on the web platform. Most importantly however, is the logo's application. I was reprimanded by my lecturer for using a gradient in my logo design for a cafe. A logo must not have gradient, according to my lecturer. However, there can be a gradient version, 3D version, etc. There must always be a b/w version for white bgd and black bgd. Rainbow coloured logos are discouraged. Unless it's a special edition for St Patrick's Day :)
Jac
8.04.2008 at 10:04
very nice list guys, some intrsting trends I hadnt taken the time to regard here, good source of inspiration. Keep up the good work!
matt
10.04.2008 at 07:04
Trends, people. This is what's going on. I agree that most of these are bad logos. But we round up examples like this to get an idea of what is out there at any given moment. Then, fortunately, we are able to design OUR work with this in mind. Hopefully against the trends if we care to distinguish our clients from the rest of the pack.

By the way to rebut a few of the comments above. Abstract shapes are fine IF they convey the feeling of the entity they represent. Same goes for colors, waves, crests, etc. If that is what best represents your client, use it. If it isn't, I hope you're smart enough to not get caught up in a trend.

If you are going to deviate from the rules, that's great.... if you really know why you are doing it. And, in my opinion, there are plenty of good reasons to break the rules. And even more bad reasons.
Joshua
14.04.2008 at 11:04
This is a very unfortunate list of 'logo' trends. The Xerox, or should it be xerox logo is truly terrible. All designers please no more 3D balls!

These identites result from lazy and derivative design thinking, partnered with muddleheaded 'marketing' departments.

Clem Devine
15.04.2008 at 08:04
So many of the people here arguing that logos should transcend trends are simultaneously arguing that a logo MUST in all circumstances, fit this and that criteria. It boggles the mind.

Yes, to fulfill it's intended purpose, a logo needs to be unique. That said, it's utterly ridiculous to suggest that there aren't common trends that appear in logo design (as appear in fine art, music, food, etc.). No man is an island unto himself and, likewise, a logo will always be viewed in the context of what else is out there in the world. A good designer spends much time looking at new design, not to copy it, but rather to be aware of the context in which his or her own work will be presented. Trends are unavoidable and they don't have to be a bad thing. It's only a bad thing when the trend supersedes the rest of the design process.

As for following the rules all the time (a logo must be able to be reproduced in 1 color, drawn in the sand with a stick, etc.), it's hogwash. A logo must be able to convey the message intended to who it's intended for, where it's intended to be. Someone above used the example that a logo needs to be abel to be printed in white paint on a tennis court. I ask, if one knows for a fact that that logo will never be printed in white paint on a tennis court, why does it NEED to be able to?

Breaking the rules can make you a bad designer, but so can following them. A good designer doesn't simply memorize a list of rules. A good designer develops a firm understanding of what AND WHY the rules are, and can therefore make educated decisions on when it may be appropriate to break them.
carsen
17.04.2008 at 02:04
There is the ticket! posted by carsen on april 17th. An expert designer has a firm understanding of what and why the rules are in place. With that knowledge, he can make a design that follows and breaks the rules for "legitimate" reasons. It won't be because it is "trendy", unless that is just a very minute asset he's going for, but whatever the company stands for. in its mission and vision for the company. then take on practicality and function, and to convey the company's vision. The main point of the logo is to brand the company's trademark and communicate that to the audience. What if the company is NOT going for hi-tech, then a hi-tech logo, would be inappropriate. If the company is trying to go against the trend, then a trendy logo would be inappropriate. The point is that the logo represents the company with as little words as possible, with as much design as can be placed on it without speaking against the company's vision and mission statements. It targets the correct type of audience for their company for maximum business. That is the sign of a well-done logo.
zabrina
22.04.2008 at 03:04
Almost all these logos are horrible. The transparent and 3Dgel/web2.0 logos cannot be transferred into black and white or one color for printing. If they are printed they will have to be printed in a four color process which will not only be 4 times as expensive to print but since they will be screened they will lose legibility and become grainy. The shield logos are unreadable at a small size and not clear as to what the product is. What happened to the rule that you create your logo first n black and white only and then add color? That way if you do need to print in a one color format, such as a newspaper, you know you logo will maintain it's integrity.
JImmy
1.05.2008 at 09:05
Regardless of what you all have mentioned in the above ramblings, logo design means a three things: simplicity, recognition, and timelessness.

-Yep
yEP
2.05.2008 at 05:05
Eww.. I hope people stop spreading this filth. A good design school will teach you that a logo has to work in one-colour. If it doesn't, it fails.

And though Apple might have started the trend, remember that their logo is seen in one-colour more than it is in '3D glass.'


Ched
7.05.2008 at 04:05
Trends are there because of the nature of the industry. You got one guy who'll make a logo that everyone else wants, a logo that everyone is "inspired by", a logo that people blog about, a logo that becomes a trend.

Youssef... Remember the name ;) jk
11.05.2008 at 02:05
eh....modern....bright..expressive..trends give people an essence of development and time changes....but if logo don't work on fax....think, this is it's owner wasted money...
mio
12.05.2008 at 08:05
What a great forum! There are lots of good insights here. Any good designer wants a "context" for his design choices and "current trends" good or bad often provide that context.

It's interesting that "green" and "leaves" have become synonymous with "environmental" when seventy-five percent of the world is ocean, and "blue" is just as much a part of our environment as "green." Both colors have their psychological pluses and minuses. They've been springing into the foreground in all areas of design, and it's becoming increasingly difficult to avoid addressing them. Knowing they are "current" and why they are current helps determine their relevance in any given assignment.
Mike
12.05.2008 at 04:05
Glad I found this place...but I gotta tell ya. So many of you sound like the students the professor beat the rules into. A TREND is the direction in which something is DEVELOPING OR CHANGING. And everything is developing into WEB DESIGN. Print weather we want to face it or not, is not the most popular media any longer. Most graphic design jobs want you to know web now. This is the way things are developing and changing. No...many of these logos are good for print but more and more is being moved to the internet. As time changes so do the trends. Nothing is written in stone. Some companies may never print or fax their logo. As business trends change so will the logo.

tm
Tracy
16.05.2008 at 03:05
Great discussion. I think there are too many cultural, regional, and industrial factors that determine a logo to really pin-point what one sees as a 'trend' - not to mention specific messaging of the organisation. For example I have been seeing the crest for 3-5 years now and for the most part I would say it hit the mainstream bigtime in '06. Once something like that is being done for everything from treehouse to corporate conferences I think we are pretty much past 'trendy'. But, then some people see it here as a current 'trend'. I am not saying I'm ahead of the game, but simply using this point to illustrate that it is hard to define something like logo designs as 'trendy', there are just too many factors, and the biggest one being, what you are exposed to is not the same to what everyone else is exposed to, there are just too many companies and too many logos being designed to determine this, because a couple real mainstream large corporations have a new logo, doesn't make that the current 'trend'. Personally, I am not a fan of the label 'trend', it just mixes up too many intermediate and junior designers into thinking that following a trend is the way to be an award winning designer. I would echo a lot of comments that are stating that designing a logo is all about the company and has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with what is defined here as 'trendy'.
paulgoodsalt
17.05.2008 at 08:05
i agree with a logo designed in one to two colors, flat-rendered.
The great challenge lies in how you represent the client/company with one brilliant stroke.
rommel
9.06.2008 at 08:06
Show me a logo that is "Timeless". One that, after 10 years, does not look dated. Coca-Cola? They have altered and refreshed their logo many times over the years. Nike? Years ago they dropped the word "Nike" that was originally attached to the swoosh in part to contemporize it. IBM? It looks dated. Apple? They went from the rainbow colors to solid because the rainbow was kinda 70's. Now...look at Pepsi...they change their logo in oeder to keep a fresh look. And even though they change thier logo, it doesn't cost them market share. Even logos that Lubalin did look dated now. My point is that companies have to change to stay competitive and that means updating their identity. I donj't see these so much as trends as I do using the advanced tools we have to create them. Can you imagine creating a translucent, organic logo with rapidograph pens, cold pressed illustration board and a prismacolor color break? But computers allow us to think like that and distribute the final art, in high res form all over the world. These aren't trends, they are an evolution of the design process. Color usage? Banners are no longer cut vinyl they are inkjet...full color. I can order 1000 4/4C business cards for $50. The usage of 1 color logos is almost nil today. One last point, clients want perceived value. If you walk in with a 3 color logo for a box company that uses a slab-serif font and a simple square and I walk in with a 3 color logo that uses a fresh fonts, tranparency effects and gradations, my "visual impact" is greater and in most cases so is the perceived value.
Christopher Edwards
12.06.2008 at 09:06
I agree with Christopher. Brands & Logos evolve. To a certain level it helps if a logo is strong enough in it's design to surpass the general trends of it's period, but all in all, they all evolve. That's what's so fun about design.

Enjoy it and try not to stick to such ridged ideas of what can and cannot be a logo. Logos are like art – The question is not whether or not it is a logo, but whether or not it's a good logo, and even that is debatable. Hell, even the bad trends lead to better design decisions later on.

And if you want to talk about 'trendy' logo design, check out General Electrics. Their logo is completely based on the trends of the period it was created in. It has altered little since then, but just goes to show you how trends of a period can sometimes surpass the trend itself.

/stepping down from the soapbox
Jon Garcia
30.06.2008 at 10:06
lol. this is dumb. i've seen all those trends hanging around since the eighties, and i'm sure they were here before that.

what happened to, "make a logo that represents our ideals" rather than "make a 'web2.0' logo.(whatever the hell that is)"?
nich
2.07.2008 at 09:07
Trends are fun and apply sometimes...but what about that picky customer that has the vision that you must represent...
Kristine Sheehan
9.07.2008 at 08:07
Reading the article I found myself thinking that the tone was similar to the fashion mags gushing about the spring collections. Great discussion though. I'm not a designer so feel free to ignore me.

If a logo needs to communicate etc. does it not need to be in the context of the people it is communicating with? The audience's sensibilities are what will determine whether the particular design is immediately recognizable. "Trends" are in some way a measure of the audience's reaction. This is true whether you are talking fashion, music or logos. Following the trends doesn't make you better, neither does ignoring them.

In reference to the rules of design. I would suggest that the most effective breaking of the rules is by people who know them well and are aware of the consequences good and bad of breaking them.

I will add that I found most of the logos used as examples incomprehensible. But I expect that is my old fogeydom kicking in.
celticfrog
9.07.2008 at 12:07
Bla Bla Bla Bla Bla, every one of you has an art degree, I am sure of that ... Bla Bla Bla.

Logos are fun to critique and look at ~ everything could be better and yes it has all been done before.

Bla Bla Bla....... but we are all here blogging and waisting valuable logo making time. So print out the pretty stuff, put it on your "Good Idea" and go design something.
skibeth
9.07.2008 at 03:07
I can't believe the number of narrow-minded old-school design funamentalists that have commented here!

"A logo must be 1 colour"
"It must work in all contexts"
"It must be able to be photocopied"
What a joke! Who decided that all companys have to follow a set of design rules??

The only rule is that it needs to be sufficient for the clients needs. If a client is never going to be printing stationery or printed material, then they are not bound to the restrictions of those media.

If you can control the media & size that it will always be displayed at, then you dont need to worry about what the logo will look like at different sizes or colours.

I will note however that with design in mind, I definately agree that a design that works in one-colour can be adapted for different colour varitaions, but the base design is (MOST OFTEN) best done as a flat colour.

When design is concerned there are no 'rules' which must be complied to, only the specifications set by the client and their intended use.

Although I think the 'web 2.0' look will definately be seen more and more - it's past its day. The fad has ended and we'll only now end up with a raft of late-adapters trying to jump on a bandwagon that stopped months ago.
CobaltCow.com
9.07.2008 at 10:07
Very well constructed list indeed.
As a graphic professional, I must agree with the naysayer in not promoting "trends" for business identity. As much as I enjoy seeing all the pretty colors, I think it's our duty as professionals to distinguish a true identity mark versus trends.
Peter
17.07.2008 at 05:07
Despite we, designers, struggle to create the surprinsingly new and the prize winning logos, trends are always subliminar to all off us. We can't scape then!
Jorge
21.07.2008 at 01:07
Since when does a logo never need to be printed in just one color? Not everything modern is on the computer screen. I just sent our logo out for print on canvas grocery bags. Unfortunately, it was designed it with about half a dozen colors and it wasn't easy getting it down to one and keeping it nice. I really wish the logo designer had considered how it would look in one color, but now it's too late.
Briana
21.07.2008 at 01:07
ain't nothin new 'bout transparency, even as far as 'trends' go... same for rainbows, 3D and sci fi... helps to look at these trends with 20+ years of experience behind your eyeballs.
squirby
24.07.2008 at 09:07
I think most of the comments to this post really miss the point. These are being represented as trends...the way things are moving. All this talk of "logos should be created in black," "logos should be rendered in solid color," "...must be classic/timeless" is old-school. Most of those old ideas stem from the limitations of the medium at the time. The web offers more freedom and the trends show the move in that direction. While I am not suggesting that "print is dead" by any means... I am saying that we are becoming a very web-centric society and printed collateral and "real world" applications for logos is taking second seat.

think about it...fewer companies need brochures, pocket folders, etc...and many are no longer concerned with signage on their brick-and-mortar building...let alone a fleet of company vehicles sporting their logo....sooo, why care about the limitations resented by those applications?

And, technology has progressed enough that reproducing many of these new logo styles on a variety of mediums is much easier than just a few years ago. The edge of the envelope has shifted. More and more designers are trying to close that gap. So...handcuffs off, designers are taking advantage of the times and the technology to create some really stunning indentites
Ken Zarecki
25.07.2008 at 10:07
Modern logo 'trends' are ruining our visual surroundings. Once overproduced with gradients and transparency, a logo becomes totally synthetic in appearance. I feel my citty environment has started to have a negative effect on me as I am constantly bombarded by visual stuff that merges into one mass interference.
daniel
28.07.2008 at 03:07
respect to all

but why u keep complicating things all together ..

trend is good .. i do like to see some new variation of colors .. it is freshing

but what the use of flashing new trended T-shirt if it doesn't fit me or fit my needs

its simple .. am not against the trend ..
but am 100% with "Dose it fit"

old logos are getting better look and feel .. everyone is healing his old logos ... trying to look new

so trend is important too

excuse my language .. hope my point is clear


anzor yousif
3.08.2008 at 10:08
Folks, how often has Coca Cola updated their logo? Ford? Walmart? Come on, companies change with the times. Logos DO reflect popular culture or everyone would still be using Script fonts. Are you saying Amazon should still be using their original logo? Yes, trends can be an easy way out ("just add a swoosh"), but they're also popular for a reason. People want to be cool, with the in crowd. Are you telling me you've never had a client flat out ask for "Web 2.0" or "a swoosh-thingy"?
Hanna Kutcher
8.08.2008 at 08:08
definition: "A logo is a graphical element, (ideogram, symbol, emblem, icon, sign) that, together with its logotype (a uniquely set and arranged typeface) form a trademark or commercial brand. Typically, a logo's design is for immediate recognition, inspiring trust, admiration, loyalty and an implied superiority.[1] The logo is one aspect of a company's commercial brand, or economic or academic entity, and its shapes, colors, fonts, and images usually are different from others in a similar market. Logos are also used to identify organizations and other non-commercial entities."

A logo is a tool, a means to an end, and is as relevant and successful as it's usefulness. Period. 'Cool" doesn't cut the mustard. "Pretty" doesn't float the boat.

Forget the 'art' or 'taste' of the logos pictured. Do you know the company or product? If the answer is yes, it MAY be a successful logo. If the answer is NO, then it probably isn't successful.

Most companies look for results on their bottom line, not image. If the logo doesn't support that, forget it. Rebranding every few years is a titanic waste of money for companies. Nike, Coke, etc. can play with their logos BECAUSE YOU ALREADY KNOW THE COMPANY, and they have VERY deep pockets. 99% of all businessmen want to choke 99% of all designers who want to rebrand ad infiniteum.
mark hoots
8.08.2008 at 02:08
hey, very cool list! i'm not a design professional JUST YET. i'm actually looking at trends for a class assignment, but these trends have given me a lot to think about. and tho some suggest each trend has been done to death, i'm certain i can take each style and apply them to my future projects, almost by the numbers, and be successful.
bob the hermit
21.08.2008 at 09:08
green
This is a literal and metaphorical trend. The roots for this can be traced back further, but Landor's greening of BP was a seminal effort. Although Raymond Loewy was using green and yellow in the historic BP logo, Landor gave it an environmental sense of place with the use of the flower/sun. Cargill, ADM, and Monsanto — all companies that might be likely to take an environmental hit—are all going green. It's a trend that is a breath of fresh air in an industry awash with red, white and blue. Public utilities have also picked up on this trend. But if it is overplayed, corporate green will soon become a tired joke to the public.
1. design firm: enterprise ig client: monsanto company
2. design firm: landor associates client: bp
3. design firm: kiku obata & company client: ameren corporation
web tasarım
22.08.2008 at 06:08
I know that I am late on this but these "logos" are more so aimed at today's print. These are the logos that go on websites/tshirts/fliers. Today we aren't restricted to black and white. Most things are in color, screen printing today can handle foil prints and 10+colors. Yes most of those are bright and seem like they would not be effective photocopiedd and such, but I guarantee that any company things about that as well in which their logo takes on a second/third form where it may just be the font or a flat single color image that portrays the same idea. This is a visual/colorful world. A single tone logo is less eye pleasing. Even your coca cola logo is spruced up on their website. everything from transparency to vector to illustration. For those of you who feel trends are bad, you need to step into the times. People don't want to see websites that look like they came from a magazine in 1950 because that's what you consider "timeless"
Rachel
23.08.2008 at 10:08
Thank you for this list. While I agree with previous posts about logos being more than a trend, the truth is a lot of times when your purpose is to appeal to the mass market, it often helpful to take into consideration what is going to appeal to the most people while keeping in line with your brand.

Why else do so many mass market companies redesign their logo every 5-10 years? To follow trends and shape their brand to appeal to more people and appear relevant. Trends are a fact of life in all areas of design-including the beloved logo. If you are a small start up that sells organic mangoes to child free hipsters only, well then trends would not matter in terms of your logo design, but for the rest of us, we appreciate being able to reflect upon current trends in all areas of design.
tazzy
25.08.2008 at 01:08
Nice article, even if I'm very late reading it... : )

What no one has mentioned about the "one color" issue is that for a logo to be a registered trademark it MUST be reproducible in black-only. Not every company cares about this or will bother registering, of course, but a good designer knows about stuff like that...
tempus fugitt
12.10.2008 at 04:10
The London olympic games logo is horrible. I totaly agree that this is one of the worst logos I've seen this year.
Jordan Hughes
13.10.2008 at 12:10
Nice article on logos although many of this logos seem to work best for the computer platform bt anyway they 're inspirational. Thank 4 putting the "ugly 80' where they belong.
Maxshine
17.10.2008 at 07:10
"as a designer, i find this sort of view of logo design to be somewhat offensive." max on February 27th, 2008...

When I read this I had to laugh. Lighten up. You must be a really fun dude to hang out with Max if a transparent logo offends you. I have an idea.. When you get out of school, find a job doing something other than being a designer. The last thing we need is another egomaniac thinking he's Obama's gift you the creative world.
Christian
17.10.2008 at 12:10
As a designer, I am find it very interesting to read. My opinion is when you design a logo your first preferance should be on the subject. Concept/idea is very important, ones you get it, you don't need this rubbish called trend. The logo will look outstanding even when it is reproduced in a single color like black. I always design in single color first. So, it's safer for reproducing in form. The 3d or web.2 effect can be used as one of the looks e.g apple logo.
youvalraj
30.10.2008 at 04:10
This article has been very helpful. I am designing a corporate identity for a company and I have been going around and around with the logo design. This article has cleared up some of my isuues surrounding the logo. Thank You
VR Graphic Looks©
Virginia Rowe
6.11.2008 at 05:11
I believe that the trend of logos you have seen a trend is real and will change little, I guess in some respects to over the years. However, what is perceived much experimentation with new ways unprecedented, as the integration of elements of graffiti and street, in addition to elements fractals and growth of lines and organic elements increasingly 'human'. Above all, increasing the subjectivity as a crucial element in the design of brands.
Paulo Peres
10.11.2008 at 08:11
I especially like the new rainbow scale logos , very nice to look at, too bad though it only works for darker backgrouds
blue2x
13.11.2008 at 10:11
i disagree with D very much, Transparancy is not as hard as you would think to manufacture you just have to work on it and iv found in my work that transparancy usually captures the viewers imagination and inspires them to look into the actual product or company,
Adam B. Litzing
17.11.2008 at 03:11
I'm a versatile designer and love the trends outlined. The problem comes with the client who always wants to go the old school way.

Changing mindset s is a whole lot of hard work!

The article makes good read...keep up the good work.....Chipika, Zambia
Chipika Simanwe
19.11.2008 at 03:11


don't like rules or trends, too limiting.
The client is usually the main logo constrainer.
but I do like solid old school logos that are simple and work on anything
Julian
10.12.2008 at 07:12
so... basically you've not listed any of the design trends of 2008, but logo design elements in general.

great article.
Little Bill
7.01.2009 at 12:01
It's interesting that most of these trends make use of color gradients, transparencies, elaborate layering and 3d qualities.

The fact that they are trends of course, indicates that the process used is probably going to be cutting edge. i think these trends also show that computer and video has become more important that print communication for a lot of companies. Looking at the advanced methodologies in the logos above, it is clear that print use for the logo has become a secondary consideration.

I also noticed that a lot of people have responded negatively to the promotion of such complex logo treatments in this article. Understand that these are only trends, and that the simple, clever 2d logo transcend trend, and will always be viewed as successful no matter the time period.
Gregory Grigoriou
9.03.2009 at 04:03
Some famous designers are of the opinion that only inexperienced logo designers use transparency and color levels.
henry john
16.04.2009 at 01:04
Wacom logo is certainly not the most beautiful logo, it looks plain ugly.
ROCKBUNCH.com
22.04.2009 at 02:04
@christa Maybe they dont intend to reproduce it in any place wich is not digital or full color... i see they tough like google did; their target is the people trough computers, so they wont need their logo to be equally reproduceable in monocromatic scheme as in full color scheme. In other kind of company i wouldn't argue anything but this one i think the designer was right
dany black
13.07.2009 at 10:07
I think there is a danger in following trends. But I also think there is benefit in being aware of the trends. Such concepts can still be applied to logos that transcend time.

For example, lets say you have a solid, effective logo. Then 2009 rolls around and you notice that people are going for that "I want to lick it," "web 2.0" look.

It's can be effective to apply the glossy effect to your logo, but it's still the same logo: it simply has a trendy concept applied to it. The logo isn't any less functional, it just has a little "trendiness" to help it attract those who gravitate toward such trends.
hextupleyoodot
19.09.2009 at 10:09
some very interesting points... but i think your research and bias leaves a lot to be desired... then of course, that's just my opinion...
have a great day... definitely a thought-provoking post!
play keno
12.11.2009 at 04:11

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