Logo Design Love

For graphic designers and all who love logos.

Arabic logos, United States logos, that Google favicon, and Don King’s hair

USA logos

Branding the United States, 50 state tourism logos.

wu tang clan logo

25 band logos. Some good, some bad, with each shown on a separate page (so a fair bit of clicking unfortunately). Via John Lampard at disassociated.

Arabic Burger King logo

Arabic versions of global brand identities. Via Brand New.

Arabic Mountain Dew logo

Also from Jason, at Graphicology, Arabic versions of global packaging logos. Thanks for sharing, Jason.

Google favicons

Google’s favicon: a discussion on brand identity with Bill Gardner, featured on Trend spotting.

“If this favicon does stick, I can assure you that someone somewhere will start to use it as a Google logo. It is only a matter of time. If they could just bring themselves to pry loose with enough money to hire someone that understands identity, to do it right. Too bad they once again, just settled for “good enough”. We will continue to look at their favicon like the Emperors New Clothes. Google prancing around in the buff because they are king.”

Cornwall Council logo

The controversial new Cornwall Council logo could be scrapped. From the BBC website (thanks Wayne).

If you want to hear about these stories before they’re published here, you’ll find the latest scoop on my Twitter page.

Logo Design Love: A Guide to Creating Iconic Brand Identities, second edition

20 appreciated comments

  1. Panasit

    The assignment to create a foreign language logo out of an English one is something that is very classic for typography student studying in non-English speaking country. I’m from Thailand and I had to do one. It was not fun (like all assignments done using hand on grid), though it sure is pretty.

    Just type in “coke thai” into google image and you will see a very nifty Coke logo designed in Thai letters.

  2. Being from the states I took a major interest in the states logos. I’m thinking a lot of them are not correct (not just Wisconsin and Washington). Course state logos have a tendency to change suddenly and somewhat often. Unfortunately states sometimes have several logos floating around. They aren’t the most organized in that area. You can certainly tell which states depend upon tourism the most. Their logos obviously look like some work was put in (not always to the better). My overall favorite has always been Mississippi’s. I think it is one of the older logos as well. I’m from South Dakota originally and lived in Texas, Arizona and currently Pennsylvania. South Dakota is one of those that depends on tourism so their logo is pretty over worked. Thanks for putting this up. I really enjoyed it. Trish

  3. I instantly loved the google favicon. thanks for the inspiration.

  4. I like the google favicon, it certainly drew my attention. It would be nice if Cornwall could give change a chance too.

  5. Anna Funk

    I don’t really care for the new Google favicon. Sure, it stands out among all the tabs I have open, but it just look juvenile.

  6. Panasit,

    I’m curious why the project wasn’t fun. Is it because you don’t like drawing on grids?

    Trish,

    Do you see the state logos being used a lot? I mean, is there a lot of internal tourism ads in the US? I watched a little TV when I lived there for a few months, and was overwhelmed by the amount of advertising.

    Steve,

    To be honest I don’t know any more about the Cornwall story than is told on the BBC website. It’d be interesting to see what else was proposed.

    Anna, florin,

    Thanks for commenting, and I hope your week has started well.

  7. Google’s logo has always, to me, been poor.

    But then I couldn’t see it being anything other than poor.

    If Google commissioned an agency to do a full re-brand I think it would loose some of it’s charm.

    They are the kings of keeping things simple.

  8. Don’t really agree with the order of the band logos, that’s if no.1 really means they think Prince’s icon is the best of the bunch. PE and Black Flag logos are some of my favourites, thought Motorhead would have been up there too to be honest.

    The Arabic graphics are amazing! I’m a huge fan of seeing how things are interpreted in other countries, especially the effort that is put into maintaining brand image.

    There seems to be a huge deal about the new Google favicon, can’t say it bothers me one bit. Admittedly, it’s fugly and looks like a dairy company logo but each to their own. I suppose they should just stick to a simple letter from their standard logo, or, change the ‘G’ to mirror the seasonal logotypes they create.

    Although a lot of those US State logos are horrendous, I quite like that fact, they have a very American look to them (if that makes sense?). Quite a big fan of Mississippi for its old school look, although it doesn’t really make me want to go there. They do, on the whole, seem to lack a decent level of design input. Most of them do look like a council work experience kid has been given it to do to keep them busy.

  9. Panasit

    To answer your question

    I don’t mind designing on grid in the computer, it’s the fact that we had to use tech pen and black poster color on top of a grid that we had to draw ourselves on Vellum paper.. that’s the part I mind.

    My school takes design very seriously and don’t allow even a tiniest mistake. If you draw a line with an ink pen and at the starting point there is a slightly noticeable dot (because you put a pressure on it slightly harder at the start) you will get mark deduction. When two black lines merged (like when you draw a grid) and there is an ink dot formed at the edge, you lose points. I had to learn a breathing technique in order to pass. It was very depressing. If your vellum paper where you drew your very detailed grid on is slightly bend because of humidity, you lose your score too.

    Even an assignment on kerning, we had to draw the alphabet with technical pen on grid and fill in with black poster color, cut and paste the letters we drew with water glue, line them up (for kerning), then xerox it until the glue smudge disappear. It has to look as if it was typed in the computer and printed out. No mistakes!

    I respect the fact that they try to preserve the old tradition and make sure that the new generation of designers know all the skills the previous generation had to master, but to be honest I think it was a waste of time on my part (because I sucked at it then and still is now)

    So yeah, that assignment wasn’t fun because it was one of those craft skill project. So was designing logotype, emblem, letter mark, pictogram, information graphic… and so on. All had to be done by hand, that’s why I said it wasn’t fun.
    The old ways are dying out though. Now they let the new students design logos in the computer and it is a lot less stressful.

    Hey, I don’t have the handcraft skills, I’ll admit to it because it is the truth. More power to those who do have it.

  10. i have just started my research about a job i’ll do for a arab company and that post about arabic logos popped out.. coincidence :)
    you got to have a good amount of talent to “translate” the western forms into arabic ones… and in fact i didnt know that arab alphabet was so flexible, that’s a nice thing to know…

    and Panasit, you school looks very hard… but i’m sure it will be worthy when you finish it.

  11. I liked most of the band logos and I was surprised by how many were designed by one of the band members. The mullet-headed teenager in me will always have a soft spot for the Metallica logo. My one gripe is the Korn logo. Cruddy kid-writing makes for one of the best band logos? Really?

    The Mississippi logo is indeed great. Hmm, I always thought the “I NY” logo was for New York City, not the state. Despite it’s icon status I always thought that logo was kind of weak.

  12. Unlike Abbas, I don’t think the Google logo is poor―I rather like it. I especially think the whole concept of them using load of “o’s” at the base of search results is a great identity system (where the o’s represent pages of results).

    However, one thing I can agree on opinion on is that terrible favicon. The first time I saw it, I looked at my calender to see if it was April 1st.

    To change the subject slightly, I’ve always singled out the Ebay logo as a really poor design, with the stretched letter-forms and all. I think THIS needs a good re-design, never-mind Goooooogle…

  13. menk

    not a fan of the new favicon. The essence of google is neutrality, this icon is too assertive.
    It pops too much and overpowers websites on my tab bar. My eyes pass over the google tabs assuming that they are some website I opened USING google.

  14. Panasit

    I read the post and it explained the reasoning behind the new design What I am still not clear on is what is so wrong with the old Googe favicon? I don’t understand why the old one wouldn’t be able to adapt to iPhone and other mobile device.

    I don’t know, despite how anyone feel about the Google logo (I hate drop shadow), if you are popular enough that just a capital letter G of a serif typeface in a dark blue color, with no design added to it whatsoever (no curve, no swoosh, nothing) is still enough for the people to link the design to your brand, there is something powerful there that you shouldn’t really mess with.

  15. Best. Title. Ever.

  16. Abbas,

    I’d actually love to see what an agency would do with Google’s identity.

    Al,

    Like you, I’m not convinced, by any means, on some of the band logos in the collection, but there are a few nice ones.

    Panasit,

    That’s some serious attention to detail right there! Breathing techniques? Oh boy. Not sure why Google decided on a new favicon either.

    Andrew,

    As much as I don’t like the Google logo, I also don’t think it needs a redesign. The product is so good that the logo could be made worse and still not adversely affect business.

    Filipe,

    I hope your Arab project goes well. Good luck with it.

  17. bryan

    Who decided to compare a completely fine logo to Don King?
    That is ridiculous. I don’t know what the old logo looked like, but I do know that the general public should not ever, Ever have a say in identity design. When opened up for discussion to the public, you can never please everyone and you are asking untrained eyes to critique something they have no business doing.

    Good luck to the designer.

  18. Thanks for this article. One thing that grabbed my attention was the BERGER KING in Arabic. Man, I can read Arabic and that brand doesn’t read even close to the pronunciation of the words Berger King. I thought that was Hilarious!


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