Food for thought‘[...] do not think that good design can make a poor product good, whether the product be a machine, a building, a promotional brochure or a business man. But [...] good design can materially help make a good product reach its full potential. In short, [...] good design is good business.’
Thomas J. Watson Jr., IBM CEO

The Scribble, probably the best designers’ logo ever

April 28, 2011, 12:25 PM

Logos come in all shapes and sizes, some good, some bad, some real crap. Few of them can be called great. Creative Review recently took on the challenge of making a Top 20 logos issue. I know, making lists and top charts is a bit tricky (some would say even childish), as you can hardly compare apples and pears — but still, it’s fun to do and a good excuse to talk about some beautiful pieces of graphic design history. Their no. 1, the Woolmark logo is without doubt one of the best ever, a true gem, with an equally interesting story. The others are also great classic logos, like the Deutsche Bank’s, the British Rail’s, Michelin’s, V&A’s and many others.

Top branding and design companies rarely have ‘interesting’ logos. While some prefer to simply make use of classic typefaces like Modern No. 20 or Centennial (see Pentagram, Interbrand, Saffron or Landor), others write their name with whatever they can find in the kitchen. After all, making a logo for a company that does just that for a living is not an easy task — and we all know how we’re usually our own worst clients.

So how can a simple scribble be probably the best designers’ logo? Read on to find out.

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Logo Design Love: A Guide to Creating Iconic Brand Identities — Book Review

January 21, 2011, 8:56 PM

“Anyone involved in creating visual identities, or wanting to learn how to go about it, will find this book invaluable.” — Tom Geismar, Chermayeff & Geismar.

Now, getting one of the greatest designers to write such a commending line about your book is no small thing. Even if just for this recommendation, David Airey‘s book is worth buying. However, praises can be biased, and great designers are usually kind and helpful (read Jessica Helfand’s beautiful article on “The Kindness of Strangers” and you’ll see what I mean — no, it’s not about Paul Rand, he’s the “angry” type).

But let’s get on with the review. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last three years or just found out about graphic design yesterday, David Airey is one of the most successful design bloggers around, writing two graphic design blogs, logodesignlove.com and davidairey.com (having more than 700,000 monthly page views). His newest, Identity Designed, is a site featuring work and inside stories from great design studios around the world (I can see a book version coming soon for this one as well). Logo Design Love started as a blog in January 2008, devoted to the design of logos and visual identities. Having become so successful, it eventually led to a book offer, as David wrote in Jan 2009.

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