History and Future of Logo Design

The Origin and History of Logo Design

While there seems to be a slight doubt concerning the actual origins of the logo designing most historians date the printing or embedding of logos to Roman times and the early Greek era. This was when the Greeks used pictures of their kings on their currency. Many historians also believe that the journey of logo designing started in Mesopotamia or the Nile Valley where pictures were imprinted on cylinder seals in order to illustrate a story.

Nevertheless, the origins of the world ‘logo’ have been derived from the Greek word, ‘lógos’ which means ‘word’. As time progressed, logos became more and more popular in identifying a particular group or country. Tribal villages had different logos for each of their different clans. Similarly, logos were beginning to be used on flags, coats of arms, paintings etc.

Use of Logos by Businessmen

Merchants and farmers, according to historians started using logos to brand their products in the 13th century. Blacksmiths, potters etc. would use their own special logo in order to show that the product as theirs.  Farmers used hot iron to brand their symbol onto their cattle in order to differentiate between them and the others.

Starbucks LogoBy the 17th century, this trend had really caught on and logos were seen not only in business, but in politics and the arts industry as well. Logo designing gained great popularity in the 19th century, which is credited to be the age of modern logo designing.

Bass Logo

1876 saw the first logo to be trademarked. This was Bass’ logo, which symbolized a red triangle.

Present times for Logo Designing

Logos are the embodiment of a company’s traits, purpose and promises. The industrial revolution played a big part in the promotion of brand icons which began to take the world by storm.

Chermayeff & Geismar, founded in 1957 was the first company made to design brand logos for other firms. Designers like these gave rise to a sense of corporate identity throughout the western world and it soon followed in other countries. The logo designing industry became a vast empire generating billions in revenue.

Changes in Logos Over Time

Logo designing has become much more advanced in present times and many companies adopt a technique of altering their logos for different purposes.

A recent example of a change in logo is that of twitter which marked its rise to fame with a change in its iconic bird logo by replacing it with another bird, but this one had more refined features which better described the ambitions and aims of the company (for more information on the twitter logo, refer to the logo reviews section).

Changing logos can affect the way a company is portrayed to the customer; therefore companies take great care in designing their logos to ensure that the right message gets across.

A certain psychology is embedded in the way logos can present themselves. Color combinations, the way the lines are set, designs etc. can all send subtle signals to the viewer, so if the right combination were to be selected it is possible that the viewer would be highly attracted towards the company’s message.

For example, using horizontal lines in a logo conveys a sense of stability, whereas vertical lines portray a sense of dignity. Moreover, diagonal lines show a sense of energy and zest.

Future of Logo Designing

The logo designing industry is growing continuously so there is no doubt that its future looks very bright. Recently, there has been a change in the way logos are made. More and more people are opting for abstract art on their logos with minimal writing in order to create a powerful effect using imagery in the customers’ mind. It will be interesting to see what trends catch on next.

Logos are not only an integral part of the corporate world but they are used as a sense of identity everywhere else and have become an important part of our lives, therefore one can expect to see logo designing creating a lot of influence on the way consumers react in the near future.

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