An ambigram, also sometimes known as an inversion, or flipscript, is a graphical figure that spells out one or more words not only as presented, but also in another direction or orientation (from Wikipedia).
Here are a few examples, with ambigram resources afterward.
John Langdon designed this logo for Aerosmith.
“Created to be a gift from Dan Brown to Stephen Tyler. I was able to retain the look of Aerosmith’s long-standing logo, while turning it into a rotational ambigram.”
John has written some great tips for those wanting to create their own ambigrams, and I’ve referenced his website in the resources below.
More info about Brian Risk’s take on the Wachovia logo.
A personal design from Agency26.
Edge logo, designed by Raja Sandhu.
Logo designer: Kevin Burr of Ocularink.
Delorean Motor Company
Designed by Phil Gibbon, this one’s a mirror-image ambigram, for the car made famous in Back to the Future.
Update: 03 March 2009
The following two logos, for NIN and ABBA, have ambigram-like qualities.
Nine Inch Nails
For the band Nine Inch Nails.
Logo for the iconic band, ABBA.
The Society 27 ambigram is a personal project of Pavel Pavlov.
Not quite an ambigram, and I’m not sure what you’d call it, but I found it interesting nonetheless — for Truce Vodka,
by Agency26, who also created the Balance ambigram shown previously.
Update: 09 August 2009
If you know who’s responsible for the Truce design, do let me know.
For those travel-loving logo designers out there, how about this ambigram travel mug?
It’s available from Flipscript, and reads ‘travel’.
I found this beautiful ‘labyrinth’ design in the ambigram Flickr pool.
Logo for Ambigram
You’ll notice this one isn’t quite like the others. It’s a logo for the Ambigram advertising agency, created by Pentagram (more info on Pentagram’s blog). I think they missed a trick by not actually allowing for rotation. Okay, so it may not have been as legible, but you only need to visit the Wikipedia page on ambigrams for an example of how effective it could’ve been.
A fitting way to wrap-up, wishing you all a very happy holiday period with this ambigram from npgraphicdesign.
Further ambigram resources
- John Langdon’s ambigram gallery
- Advice on learning to create ambigrams, from John Langdon.
- Inversions, by Scott Kim
- Ambigram Flickr group, currently over 1,700 images.
- 10 great ambigram logos, from Alec Rios.
- Flipscript ambigram products, and the PRWeb news story behind how Flipscript started.
- Love / amor optical illusion.
- Ambigram’s by nagfa — Naguib and Fadilah have clearly done this before.
Have you created any you’d like to share?