14 January 2009

Expressive Logos With A Certain Attitude-Color and Type

1914.There are two logos I found today that just leapt out at me, and I'd like to share them.

The first one I found on this blog here, and is the logo of ... well, you can read it:



You'd think that 'distressed type' has been used to death, and you'd be right, but for examples like this. The X is an interesting shape and since it's a very infrequently-used letter in written communication, it's a good letterform to try some play with.

It's actually quite easy to create distressed type in Photoshop if you don't actually have any, and I'll create a how-to on that presently.

The other is sweet and punchy, from Erin Weed, a personal safety and self-defense expert who is behind Girls Fight Back!, an advocacy and educational activity for young women:




Clever, witty play on the name (the tagline incredibly apropos: may all your weeds be wildflowers–remember, in many cases, a weed is a wildflower you just don't want in your garden) and a light-yet-bold approach that uses cheerful, warm colors to communicate a certain dynamic attitude.

I just enjoyed these logos. I hope everybody does. They're really well done!

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2 comments:

ian mackenzie said...

Hi there,

Thanks for the notes on our logo (Praxis Theatre). It's actually a typeface that comes pre-distressed. I designed it a few years ago and it has served us well.

The major problem with using distressed type in your logo, however, is scaleability. Our logo looks great when it's huge.

Check it out here.

But when we have to run it somewhere small, all that distress tends to fill in. Sometimes I'd just rather have something a little simpler, a little cleaner – that can be small without filling in.

I've been meaning to create a non-distressed version of the logo for a while now . . . for small applications.

Anyway, thanks for your kinds words on this. It is both unexpected and reaffirming.

Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis said...

Thanks for the response, Ian. You developed a good logo that I enjoy; I thought it only fair to say so.

The overarching thing about distressed type is that its on the verge of being overused. When I find it all over a layout, I start to cringe; here's someone being different, just like everyone else. But on your logo, maybe it's the way it works with the X (which is a very apt exploitation of a uncommonly-seen-in-words letterform), with the way you've kind of hit the middle ground on how much distressing to use. It's a hard line to draw sometimes. But this provides mood without distraction, so I think that's well done.

You added an important point:

The major problem with using distressed type in your logo, however, is scaleability. Our logo looks great when it's huge ... But when we have to run it somewhere small, all that distress tends to fill in. Sometimes I'd just rather have something a little simpler, a little cleaner – that can be small without filling in.

I can relate. "Design a logo that scales" is one of the First Big Commandments of Logo Design instructors tend to ram into our crania. And that's why they exhort most of us to use vector programs like Illustrator (or whatever the-editorial-you prefers) rather than Photoshop, though Photoshop excels in allowing you to create distressed type. And on complex designs like that, the small spaces tend to fill in at small sizes, and the effect is lost.

Your inspiration to custom-craft a smaller version is certainly a valid one given what you have to work with, perhaps one with a slightly different patttern of holes or something.

Anyway, thanks for responding. That made my day. Good luck with your theatre. That's a high calling.