Logo Trends: How Does Yours Stack Up?

Julia Reich

Julia Reich

For those of you interested in the ongoing Komen-Planned Parenthood story, I will continue to update yesterday’s post at the bottom of the original content. Today we are moving on with a new topic . . .

Our resident design expert, Julia Reich, is back with the latest trends in logos. And if you are embarrassed with your organization’s current logo or think it’s just time for a change, be sure to join us February 8th for Julia’s webinar called, “Help! My Logo Sucks!” Julia will take a look at why some logos work and some don’t, and teach you how to evaluate your own logo. The webinar is for All-Access Pass Holders to our webinar series.

~Kivi

Guest Post by Julia Reich, Julia Reich Design

Designers – and clients we serve – should be aware of design trends that may impact our marketing and communication efforts.

So when the annual report on Current Logo Trends goes up at Logolounge.com, I hurry over.

It’s important to learn about design trends so we don’t jump on any stylistic bandwagons and replicate what others are doing. Marks should be classic, but not in the boring, conventional sense. I mean they should look just as fresh and impactful in five or ten years (or more) as they do today. Not trendy.

Of course, not all trends are trendy. As “a general direction in which something tends to move”, trends are a fascinating indication – in the words of logolounge.com’s founder, Bill Gardner – of “courageous experimentation” for the design and marketing space. “Some trends will emerge strongly while others will submerge and not be seen again. As part of a historical record, though, each is significant.”

Recent Trends

The visual online world continues to change the parameters of logo design. Ink used to be king, with print processes to factor into each design. For example, thin line weights have historically been frowned upon, since they can be too hard to read in dots per inch, once that letterhead flies off the offset lithography press. Alternatively, solid blocks of color were encouraged. Now we’re seeing thinner line weights due to successful online legibility.

(Since computer monitors are backlit, colors appear bolder and brighter than when we look at the same image on a printed medium, like a brochure, where the light is absorbed or reflected off the inked page surface).

Client: Advanced Lifeline | Design Firm: Allegra-East

Computers as design tools are encouraging the typical flat logo to take on new dimensions and shapes, so they see appear to fly off the page. With more brands being born and nurtured online, and with less print collateral weighing them down, colors have become lighter, brighter, oftentimes created with translucent overlays and gradients.

Client: Mom to Madre | Design Firm: 3 Bees

Other logo trends seem to be inspired by the ubiquity of online entities. For example, fruit are enjoying their moment in the visual identity spotlight – quite possibly due to Apple’s world dominance, followed by Blackberry in the near distance.

 

Client: Radius Disability Services | Design Firm: SASI Marketing

Speech bubbles have been very popular recently, perhaps due to all those Facebook “Like” symbols we keep seeing (and using).

Client: In The Life Media, Inc. | Design Firm: Guard Dog Brand Development

Cute is also seeing its 15 minutes of fame. I would guess this is due to Twitter’s omnipresent blue bird mascot.

Client: Goodness Grows Gardening Network | Design Firm: Trampoline

For more on the 2011 logo trends (and to access the annual archive dating back to 2003), visit logolounge.com and learn why mortar & pestles, the letter “O”, and the color brown were also popular logo trends this past year.

Trend or no, the rules of good logo design always apply. Learn more in an earlier article of mine on this blog, Tips to Evaluate your Visual Identity.

Julia is Principal of Julia Reich Design, which helps nonprofit organizations bring their mission to life with award-winning brand strategy, graphic design, and web design services. Clients love her team’s top-notch creative work combined with an affordable, personalized approach.

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