2015 Logo Trends
Where once logos were found only on shingles and business cards, they now adorn so much more — from social media profiles to websites, trade show booths to pamphlets, company shirts to corporate jets.
With so much riding on the logo, it’s important to stay on trend, which is why companies in the know start digging for those new trends the moment the new year rolls around. Wondering if you ought to update, or if your logo is already au courant? Check out the following list of logo trends for 2015.
From more intricate images to shapes that almost look like doodles, hand drawing adds a quirkiness that vector graphics simply cannot match. Perhaps it’s the imperfection or the obvious humanity of it, but hand-done details aren’t going out of style any time soon. Able to fit any brand, from retro to classic to modern, hand drawing adds a warmth and flair hard to get anywhere else.
Incredibly mutable, able to adapt to a wide variety of print and online situations, dynamic logos are truly the mark of an enlightened, modern business. Though the name suggests that they move (which sometimes they do), the true essence of a dynamic logo is its ability to adapt.
Sometimes this means a company will use the same logo but change the color; other times it means they will use a distinct logo style, but the image will change. Or perhaps the logo stays the same, but is stamped across a different background every time. The result is recognizable branding able to take on many forms, which not only holds the eye, but enables the brand to mold itself to different types of marketing with unparalleled ease. If you are switching your logo, consider a dynamic approach.
The absence of color and shape has been an effective way to draw attention to an image for thousands of years. Today, well-made logos set against a large field of white or another plain color still do quite well in both the online and offline spheres. The only necessity to use negative space well is a bold, dramatic logo — otherwise it will get lost against all that nothingness.
Traditionally a big no-no in design, overlapping lines are now coming into their own. Whereas before logos relied on well-regulated lines contained within their spaces, designers are now experimenting with drawing one line over another and creating a shadow underneath the top line. This makes obvious that the overlap is an artistic decision rather than an oversight, and adds depth to traditionally flat line images, which works especially well in the online space.
Bright, bold, beautiful hues are coming back into fashion. Although process colors — which use cyan, magenta, yellow and black (also called key, for the traditional CMYK mix) — allow a huge range of different colors, spot colors offer unrivaled brilliance and clarity of shade. The ink is premixed to a precise specification, so there is no variation in the color, producing gorgeous simplicity. Because logos are still frequently used on print collateral, taking these types of questions into account can result in beautiful branding across mediums.
Since the rise and total dominance of the Web, beautiful typography is easier than ever to come by. Whether you use the hundreds of fonts available on a standard laptop, download free fonts through Google or the multiplicity of font-publishing platforms available today, or pay for premium, you’re guaranteed to find something gorgeous. You are not, however, guaranteed to find something unique.
This is why more companies than ever are choosing to have their logos custom lettered. Hand lettering ensures that no one else can go download the same font, providing unique style. Even if two different businesses choose the same artist, the result is bound to be different because of the hand-drawn nature of the works.
Mimicking traditional wood block printing and linoleum cutting, linocut logos use sharp lines at edgy angles to produce graphically intense, beautiful images. These are perfect for companies that are close to nature, work with animals or have an outside-the-box take on food or wine. Some graphic designers may even do a traditional hand cutting, then transfer the results to a digital file.
Modernity be darned, vintage is going nowhere fast: Whether it’s a good grunge texture or a classic font, retro is here to stay. In the old days, designers created logos by layering various fonts on top of one another to create solidly branded word blocks, such as in this example.
Hallmarks of this logo style are old-school typefaces given an updated twist, aged textures and classic shapes (think stars, diamonds and fleurs-de-lis). Combining them creates the kind of stamp you’d expect on a piece of your grandma’s crockery or the back of your grandpa’s cologne bottle. Such an approach goes a long way toward instilling a sense of honesty, durability and class into any brand.
Although originally used to model three-dimensional objects, low polygon displays are now used to more artistic ends. A mesh of polygons all knit together, each with a limited number of sides, creates a geometrically interesting object with distinct shapes creating an overall whole. Though the art form can get very complex indeed, in the case of logos, the shape is usually quite simple — a tree, perhaps, or a cloud. The result is a unique object that screams modernity, but simultaneously boasts an appealing childlike purity.
Of course, a good logo still prizes simplicity, recognition and uniqueness over particular trends. These are the traits necessary to help a logo withstand the test of time, so if yours is lacking, consider an update. If you see any trends we missed, please feel free to add them in the comments below!