Thursday, March 31, 2011

Merck Pharmaceuticals Logo Design Review





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T

B A C K G R O U N D
Chermayeff & Geismar's website says: "This major pharmaceutical company had an unusual identity problem. While it markets its products worldwide, it cannot use the Merck name in much of Europe because of a name conflict. A bold symbol was developed to go with the Merck name in the U.S., and with other names, such as MSD in Europe, in a common, clearly identifiable format."

H I G H L I G H T S
Simple and timeless. Now "timeless" is always a tricky term to use—it's something as designers we strive for, but don't fully grasp. But this mark can be an example for elements that lend itself to this achievement. Firstly, the logo design explains itself visually (without much needing to be added by me, but let me continue). The graphic image presented here is multi-faceted with utmost appropriateness: Merck suggests medicines and medicines suggest pills (at least this is what I always saw in this mark...could be interpreted other ways as well). We see the classic circle pill form (with the sometimes scored mark across the middle) along with the elongated "oval" pill. All these graphic images are created purely by circles—circles that intersect and divide for a collaboration of positive and negative space. Nothing more is added or needed, so this logo works at a very pure level. And at a very raw level, the circle shape is "timeless" to humans: the sun, moon, features of the face and body are all familiar elements that reflect the circle.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Melrose Suites Logo





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T
Melrose Suites

B A C K G R O U N D
Vine Collective's website says: "This experimental condominium project combined modern architecture with "green" building techniques. In creating their identity, we mirrored the tenant experience which was visually organic, with lush landscaping and a southern color palette."

H I G H L I G H T S
Structured yet soft. This interesting balance is largely achieved by the choice of how many angles/corners to use in this logo design. The strong structure starts from the inside, out. Straight lines move outward to which they make a slight rounded corner, to a sharp rigid corner, and then back in to a large rounded corner. This pattern is repeated seamlessly. The attractive part comes from the contrast of those sharp, rigid corners flowing to the larger curves, creating a nice contrast of style that works well together. A good, consistent line weight is chosen, and it scales well. The negative space in the center where the inner lines begin to meet is left open for the eye to move from section to section without being closed off into one area. Rather than a rigid geometric form, this presents a more organic, overlapping/folded form that is pleasant, and again, well structured.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bradley Paper Logo Design Review





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T
Bradley Paper
(Note: their website isn't working, but you can read reviews of the store from the link)

B A C K G R O U N D
Gardner Design's website simply states: "Identity developed for Bradley Paper stores."

H I G H L I G H T S
It's got personality. The curl is well formed in a clean elliptical shape—reflective of the craft of paper. The curl has nice dimension with the open separation between the tail, body, and head. This also leads to the fact that this logo mark has a nice uniform of elements...the "tear drop" shape has attractive repetition in the tail which is then reflected in the eye and is also repeated in it's positive form on the head. The other uniform at play is the triangular shape used in the feet and mimicked in the head. These uniform elements tie everything together for a cohesive appearance. They say odd numbers are more appealing in art, well whether it was intentional or not, there is a nice subconscious appeal of all these elements in numerical quantity: the "tear drop" is used five times, the triangular shape three times, and the curled separations of the tail, body, and head three times.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Papalote Children's Museum Logo





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T

B A C K G R O U N D
Lance Wyman's website says: "The logo for "Papalote", the Children's Museum of Mexico City, designed by architect Ricardo Legorreta, is a butterfly-kite. The name "Papáloti" means butterfly in the Aztec Nahuati language. The geometric forms in the wings of the logo suggest the museum's geometric buildings."

H I G H L I G H T S
Playful and geometric. So smart: you go back to the basics for this logo design solution. As kids, we're taught those geometric shapes and they become part of our playtime. There is symmetry between the two wings, but it looks more "free" because of the arrangement of the shapes, and putting the butterfly form on an angle changes the visual consistency of those elements. The circles make a nice foundation at the base of the wings for the other shapes to work off. The high amount of contrast through positive and negative space makes it very engaging to the eye and something that is memorable.

(Reader Submission) Engaged Coaching Logo



D E S I G N E R
Studio 513

C L I E N T
Engaged Coaching

B A C K G R O U N D
Studio 513 says: "The client desired a logo that communicated partnership ... slightly resembling a compass. As you partner with your clients, you unearth their destiny pointing them in the right direction. Red is symbolic of the blood of Christ, but also it represents passion. Revealing the passions of your client's heart and stewarding those passions is your heart's desire."

H I G H L I G H T S
(Logo submitted by one of our readers...) Clean and simple. The circle form is approachable, while the strong lines in the "E" letterform present strength and confidence. Confidence is also evoked by the tilt of the "E" pointing forward and upward. The anomaly of the pointed angle in the circle provides for an element of distinction and recognition. The openness in the corners and ends of the letterforms make it more inviting to enter into visually (as compared to if it were completely enclosed in the circle shape).

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Good Neighbor Program Logo





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T
Toyota Motor Sales USA - "Good Neighbor Program"

B A C K G R O U N D
Leader Creative's website says: "The US headquarters’ Good Neighbor Program community relations initiative."

H I G H L I G H T S
You just get it. There wasn't much background from the designer's site, but there doesn't need to be. The name of the program and the visual say it all. It's for Toyota, so the "T" letterform is leveraged. It's a relational support type of program so the familiar image of the hand shake is used. Tying the two elements together is seamless. The skill of a graphic designer is often taking what is familiar and making it appear new again. This logo does that. Strong, clean, consistent lines and intersecting forms create a lot of visual interest. The use of 90 degree and 45 degree angles presents a very confident presence.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mondragon Corporation Logo





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T

B A C K G R O U N D
Saffron's website says: "Today, Mondragon is the name of the world’s largest worker cooperative with 256 companies ranging from specialist, niche operations to major international players, operating in numerous fields. The companies are bound together by a system of employee participation that is unique and, at the same time, uniquely successful. What they all share is a commitment to humanity and democracy at work." ... "The logo incorporate the ‘M’ for Mondragon drawn in a way that evokes partnership and brings the story to life."

H I G H L I G H T S
Very clean and uniform. It is clearly evident that this logo mark is supposed to represent partnership and working together. The human aspect is suggested in the simple looping ends that meet each other in the middle of the mark. A good, flat base provides foundation for the more open style that creates the top half of the design. Line weight is well chosen so that it scales nicely and has strength, while making sure the "heads" don't close up. The large, accentuated roundedness makes for a friendly and approachable feeling...while the mix of strong angles provides that organized corporate feel to balance it out.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Novo Nordisk Logo Design Review





D E S I G N E R
I could not find the designer, but Novo Nordisk has a good history bio about the logo.

C L I E N T

B A C K G R O U N D
Novo Nordisk's website says: "The Novo Nordisk logo is the Apis bull, one of the sacred animals of ancient Egypt. The Apis bull was worshipped as the incarnation of Ptah, creator of the universe, city god of Memphis and the patron deity of craftsmen. The logo is a stylised reproduction of an Egyptian statuette dating from circa 664–323 BC. It is richly ornamented with symbols representing, among other things, the eternal dualities of life, day and night, life and death."

H I G H L I G H T S
A more organic mark that has nice style and structure. There is a good visual balance of weight with the horns and circle at the top being in compliment to the solid fill of the legs. The middle of the mark has nice negative space that creates contrast and interest when combined with the two said solid areas, and the single fill shape on the back of the animal is a nice bridge. It is fluid and strong in it's craftsmanship. The line weights change but never get too thin and frail, while there are elements of stability in the strong vertical line of the tail and the horizontal line at the base of the feet. The circle shape nestles into the form of the horns nicely and creates a distinct element of interest and recognition.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Princeton University Press Logo Design Review





D E S I G N E R

C L I E N T

B A C K G R O U N D
Chermayeff & Geismar's website says: "The prestigious publishing house commissioned the new identity to increase its visibility outside of the academic community. To replace the old mark, Chermayeff & Geismar created a bold symbol based on the letter 'P' with a second 'P' formed in its negative space."

H I G H L I G H T S
Modern and regal. A beautifully crafted logo mark. Clean and elegant in it's execution. The bolder line weight exudes strength and the counter negative space matches the line width well for a balanced and established appearance. A good visual rhythm flows through this design. The two "P" letterforms are obvious, and one could argue there is even a "U" in there as well. Excellent scalability makes for a very versatile mark. Hard to elaborate on this too much because the appeal of the simplicity in this design is reflective of a great visual concept at the core. Ivan and Tom are great; some of my favorites. (Got a couple of their books too.)