Budding Logo Design Trends for 2011

By / May 10, 2011 / Tips
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Logo trends have been ever-advancing with the changing web. As digital artists are becoming more creative and mainstream we can see the crescendo of new ideas. Logos are some of the most important graphical pieces in any website, as they display your company and purpose to each visitor.

As designers are able to collaborate with quicker ideas it’s not uncommon to see the rehashing of old ideas in new logos. This process gives web designers a nostalgic perspective with their artwork. Below I’ve gone into a few great examples for amazing logo designs in 2011. We have seen some great releases and updates over the past few months which are sure to inspire any digital artist.

Vector Arts & Animals

Animals and creatures are some of the most common additions into newer logos. This trend isn’t exactly new and has been in use for decades. Animals allow for your customers to recognize and co-relate the two images and your business together. The Trix Rabbit and Cocoa Puffs bird are two prime examples.

However, what we’re seeing with newer logos is a sense of vector illustrations coupled with brilliant imagery. From robots to chirping Twitter birds and even Chimps dressed as mailmen, we can see how popular the trend has become.

For example, the Dodo below is the perfect alignment for a retro-style feeling. The logo could fit well into any heading and supplies a very strong branding along with the extinct dodo. Fancy lettering below applies a vintage feel to the overall design which a Dodo does compliment quite nicely.

As an added benefit, many of these artists create such animals in Adobe Illustrator. When saving artwork as .ai files it’s much easier to manipulate and scale your figures as trends change. This gives your branding freedom to move from posters, billboards, newsletters, e-mail messages, and any other form of media without pixelation.

Fancy Lettering

Typography is possibly some of the most important aspects to any of your logo designs. Visitors will be glancing towards the top of your page for any sign of bold, stand-out lettering. Having your logo type jump off the page gives your visitors a simple way to recognize the current website.

Every typeface has a feeling attached to it and changes from digital to print work. As in the example below we can see the letters reflect a juicy fluidity. This could relate to food or beverages, similarly a design company such as printing business cards.

There are much fancier styles of writing for professional corporations. As in the next example we can see a small letter icon outlined in dark greys. The logo type is set along the same horizontal axis and follows a path brilliantly. Notice how each letter is also lowercase, generally indicating a modern form of professionalism.

You can use these effects in any logo which would stand firm in a similar niche. With so many different types of businesses it’s difficult to choose just a single noteworthy font family. In our set of serif fonts you can find tons of freebies which could match up well with your logo designs. Similarly we’ve got tons of other free fonts for clean website designs.

Lost in Abstraction

The abstract arts have taken a very strong hold on web designers. Modern layouts include some of the strangest effects we’ve ever seen in the history of webpages. Rounded corners and simplistic user profiles offer some of the best user experiences from a digital platform.

The logo above demonstrates a very powerful abstract concept. The fake name of the company CinEmpire could be understood as a move streaming company or video rental. We see an empire or city depicted behind a roll of film. The details are uncanny and fit a strong resemblance to vintage style movie theaters.

This isn’t to mention how the logo itself is displayed on a plaque. The formatting shows authority and is used to impose a sense of power and immortality. By using only tan and grey the color palette is shortened to that of a 1920s era cartoon.

As a contrast example the logo above uses similar iconic imagery. The film rolls here are colored quite beautifully and stand out as the logos focal point. The typography beneath is colored with two distinct shades of black and blue. The contrast helps break apart the logo where visitors may wish to understand what the company does. This effect can be seen in other brilliant typography-focused logos stemming back just one year ago.

Increased Novelty

Using other logos as a means for creativity is a fantastic boost to the imagination. Many designers such as Walt Disney played off fairy tales and historical mythology. Now in 2011 we can see the novelty effect has increased one-hundred fold.

The charming example above plays on the infamous iTunes designs. Apple has changed their logo over the course of many releases, but a musical note tends to stand out among the rest. On the logos’ type we can see all lowercase letters to symbolize modern-era technology. This labtunes could be a new music sharing or social networking website.

On another level the example below demonstrates a playful pun with words and imagery. Creating a thread thimble icon under retro-style art effects plays well into the role. This logo type would stand out in the top corner of your web page as the descriptor towards your brand.

A banner of text is wrapped around the threading to represent royalty and proper introduction. Lettering is brilliant white contrasting on a deep blue. Proper shadows and outlines have also been applied to keep the text standing out from all the background noise. However when viewed from afar the logo seems to come together in one fell swoop – only a handful of great logos can pull this off.

Conclusion

Hopefully this article has demonstrated some fantastic examples of new logo trends. We’re only into May and so far 2011 has shown us some brilliant artistic works. Web designers are growing in numbers and thus we’re seeing incredibly talented high school and college students like never before.

If you’d like more inspiration I recommend our set of minimalist logos for the wandering creative. These impose a sense of white space and apply amazing trends in logo creation. Similarly if you know of other greats trends and designs share your responses in the comments field below.

About the Author

Jake Rocheleau is a creative writer and UI designer. You can follow him on twitter @jakerocheleau or visit his personal website at JakeRocheleau.com.

17 Comments

  1. Jeremy
    May 11, 2011

    I agree with the article about typography. Hand-writing typography is becoming a real graphic trend, as if we were tired of computerized fonts.

    Reply
  2. Brandon Halliburton
    May 11, 2011

    Minimalism is becoming a very big thing now a days too.

    Reply
    • Snoggle News
      May 12, 2011

      Halliburton huh? any relation to cheney? reptilian agenda? HAARP facilities? 9/11 illuminati blood sacrafice barry soetoro?

      Reply
  3. Daniel
    May 11, 2011

    How many of the logos are for actual existing companies?

    Reply
  4. Jonathan Weisberg
    May 11, 2011

    Great post, although vector art logos have been around for a while now, it certainly makes it easier for print. I’ve always been a fan of fancy lettering, as exemplified in my own logo.

    Reply
  5. Johan
    May 12, 2011

    Interesting and inspiring article! Although logo design is becoming more artistic most companies have a lot to gain from a simple and clean design. A complex logo usually dont last. Thanks for the share :)

    Reply
  6. sam – dorset web design
    May 12, 2011

    Very gd article like a few of the examples

    Reply
  7. S.K. (Insfired)
    May 14, 2011

    We’re in the process of designing a logo for Insfired and this break-down is of great help to kind of show us what direction we want to go, at least for 2011 :)

    Minimalism + Novelty (do they even mix well?) never fail to conquer my eyes.

    Anyway, thanks for the article!
    S.K.

    Reply
  8. Mark Armstrong
    May 16, 2011

    Really helpful to me, Jake, as I’m beginning a logo project. I especially appreciate the reminders about converting finals to .ai files for maximum flexibility and use; the importance of simplicity; and how small case has become the norm for text. Also: the impact that can result from using just a few colors. Many thanks.

    Reply
  9. Jake Rocheleau
    May 16, 2011

    @S.K. (Insfired) “Minimalism + Novelty (do they even mix well?)”

    Oh totally! This is one of my favorite combinations as it invokes a state of eternal bliss. Almost childlike in nature and you can really grab the attention of your visitors.

    ~peace be with you

    Reply
  10. Carl
    May 19, 2011

    When I see a webpage…if it doesnt look like they put in some time to make the logo look authentic and having an authority…i quickly assume that translates into their content. Logo design is as important as content. Its essentially what your showing up to a party in…are you in gym shorts or classic button down..?

    Reply
  11. Patricia Ann
    May 23, 2011

    This post is great! Question, any idea what fonts that are close to those fancy lettering? I know most of the fancy lettering are custom made but it would be nice to start off a nice base. Thanks!

    Reply
  12. Coach Spoon
    May 24, 2011

    Does anyone know of other websites like inkd.com that offer corporate branding or logo packages?

    Reply
  13. Yuriy Z.
    June 14, 2011

    Alot of these look too trendy, and wont stand the test of time.

    Reply
    • Eric Pearson
      May 10, 2012

      This is like saying, “The sun is hot.” Of course they won’t “stand the test of time”. Nearly all logos evolve over time. If you are in a business that caters to “trendy”, then a logo in this direction would be perfect for you. You would also expect you logo to be fluid and change over time with your company.

      This goes for both Wagster and DesignBuddy too. Sometimes trendy is a good thing. Also, just because you have a complex color web logo, doesn’t mean that the logo’s essence can’t be transferred to black and white. Many major companies who do have complex color logos will have a completely different black and white logo that is still, in essence, their main logo. Its just distilled a bit. Nothing wrong with that at all as long as its still easily recognizable and carries the same message.

      Reply
  14. wagster
    August 11, 2011

    What Yuriy said. One of the most important qualities of a logo is that it won’t look dated in a few years – anyone remember the glut of rounded font logos that sprung about around Web 2.0 and have now quietly gone and hidden away in shame? In the context of a logo, trendy is not a good thing.

    Reply
  15. DesignBuddy (logo design)
    January 17, 2012

    My two cents: a lot of the more detailed & intricate styled logos featured on sites like “Logopond” look very cool, but some of them run into problems when you switch the existing background color from black to white or vise versa. Logos that rely on color to achieve their effect are simply not as versatile as their more simple counterparts. Just something to keep in mind when designing more complex logos. There is a reason why the top companies in the world keep their logo designs relatively simple.

    Good point Wagster. Following trends is definitely a bad idea in logo design creation.

    Reply

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