Your logo is one of the first things people notice about your business. Logos, when designed well, can attract attention and create a memorable, top-of-mind brand image. Done wrong, they can even drive customers away.
If you’re just starting out, you’re probably already thinking about the sort of logo you’d like to create to represent your brand. To help, we’ve compiled a list of 40 creative and effective logo samples, with tips to help you arrive at the best logo for your own brand.
The best way to keep your product in a viewer’s mind is to make something unique. Iron Duck‘s logo does that in spades. The clothing line incorporates a duck’s image into a clothes hanger, both representing what they sell (clothing) and their name (a literal iron duck).
Words have specific connotations, or associations we give them beyond their specific meaning. Images can have connotations too, especially in the style they’re drawn. Thinking about such connotations can help you create a more effective logo. Data Berry‘s logo is a great illustration of this: This minimalist image is designed to evoke both organic and tech-related concepts simultaneously.
If you want to make your logo stand out a bit more, try an image that creates two separate pictures. Shoot my Dog’s logo, for example, is nominally someone taking a photo, but the position and style choice makes the individual look like a dog. Make sure your “doubled” image matches your product or subject, and start experimenting.
Providing a shorthand for what you do is a great way to use a logo. Movers illustrates this well: They have a hand picking up a house, visually representing how they help individuals move homes.
Similar to the above, try incorporating your product into the logo in interesting ways. Guitar Studio has a particularly creative example: They create the image of a guitar using the “i” and “s” of “guitar” and “studio,” respectively. Try playing with fonts and see what images you can create with text.
One way to create a top-of-mind brand image is to use memorable and meaningful visual metaphors. Immanuel Lutheran Church does this well by implementing a minimalist representation of a tree, which effectively associates the concept of life with the Christian cross.
There are fun and creative ways you can use negative space — or the space between images — effectively. Rocket Golf, for example, places two golf tees close together, but uses the space between them to create the image of a rocket. Playing around with this can create unique, interesting effects you might not be able to achieve with simple images.
Animation almost always attracts attention more quickly than a static image. Using a GIF version of your logo works well, but only if you use enough motion to draw eyes but not too much as to be distracting. Rain Wine is a great example. The GIF includes a simple rain animation that creates the image of a wine bottle, which is not only creative but subconsciously appeals to the viewer’s thirst.
Creating a series of animated logos which can be used in different contexts can be another great alternative to standard logos. Fubiz, for example, has several different animation options. Including these on a website makes the logo more memorable, and can make things more entertaining for viewers.
You can get a lot of mileage out of a simple design. For example, Boundary only has its name and a simple, brighter line curving through it, but it’s incredibly effective, as the line creates a “boundary” for the letters themselves.
According to designer Stephen Boak, Boundary’s logo also represents its purpose. “As a monitoring company, signal processing is a big part of what the product does. The word is built on a sine wave as a gesture to this,” he told Visme.
Sometimes you don’t need an image that directly relates to your product; one that represents your name works just as well. Freelancer, for example, uses an image of a lancer, which creates a memorable icon despite not directly relating to their service.
Creating an image and text in a similar style can help increase the cohesiveness of your logo. Quick Fish, for example, has the same free-flowing, simple design in its text as in the image above.
Silhouettes are a simple way to create a logo; they keep things to a minimum, but are still able to provide a unique style. For example, Slow Motion uses a snail-and-film-reel silhouette, evoking old black-and-white movies.
When creating logos, simple is often better. Take a look at Unlock’s logo, which is simply the company’s name, with a small lock underneath the “n” to represent unlocking something. While very basic, it’s incredibly effective, perhaps because of its simple creativity.
Everybody loves cute mascots, so using one as your logo might be the best way to go. Orbotix is a great example. It uses a cute mascot that both represents what they do and makes their products — fast-paced robots — feel more approachable.
Sometimes, you don’t really need an image; the name itself can be enough. Compass takes advantage of this, creating a “compass” in the “o” with a simple line.
Making sure your logo matches your product’s theme is a must. You don’t want to use an edgy style for something like a kid’s concert, or an extremely goofy one for a Fortune 500 company. Shine a Light is a great example of effectively matching the logo to the product — the image is still professional-looking, but includes some kid-like elements, such as the stars, that help illustrate their focus.
Humor is a tried-and-true method to make your work more memorable, and using a visual pun is a great way to put this into practice. Pause is a fantastic example — it uses an actual paw to represent their name and create something refreshing and unexpected.
Ambigrams, for those who don’t know, are words that can be read the same from two or more different directions. This can create some entertaining and surprising visuals. For example, Turn uses an ambigram to represent their name, “turning” the title so that it can be read upside-down as well as traditionally.
A fun way to use animations is to show your logo first, then have your name appear. This helps place great emphasis on your logo and creates a better connection with your brand. Simplicity illustrates this well, starting with a simple heart, then transitioning to their name beside the heart.
Not everything has to be obvious upfront. Including hidden meanings is a great way to surprise and entertain your viewers. For example, EDN almost looks like just an image at first glance; a closer look reveals that their name is actually apparent within the image.
Try using letters to create different, interesting images. Choose, for example, uses a toggle on/off bar for its “oo,” which creatively expresses their name.
Creating a metaphor can be a great way to express meaning faster. For example, Slingshot, a group whose motto is “deliver more efficiently,” uses an animated rocket as their logo. Obviously no item is going to be delivered to your doorstep on a rocket, but it makes a good metaphor for the experience: making it quicker and easier to converse with clients over deliverable items. Considering metaphors, and how to implement them, is a great way to enhance your logo.
We’ve seen products incorporated into words; why not take it a step further, and make the entire word look like the item it’s representing? Bison is a great logo sample, as the word itself is made to resemble a bison.
Borders can be a good way to make your logo more distinct and accentuate certain styles. Take The Volcano: Their muted, almost hand-drawn logo includes a border that makes it resemble a patch, creating something with a very unique feel. The type of border can vary, so try experimenting and see what works for your style.
Not all animated logos have to be flashy; sometimes, simple, subtle movements are more effective. Flip Flop, for example, only animates the third letter (the “i” and “o” flip back and forth), but it’s incredibly effective, as the motion not only shows the name but illustrates its meaning.
How you write a word can often affect how it’s viewed, something which is incredibly effective with logos. A good logo sample is Edge Link, which uses a stylized font. Use specific styles and fonts to help accentuate who you are and what your name means.
With logos, you likely want individuals to recognize exactly what you do in a quick, succinct fashion. Crafting an image that represents your purpose in a glance allows viewers to understand and become interested much quicker. Fit Talks is a great example; their logo is a text bubble with a heart line inside, making a great shorthand for their purpose.
While a stylish logo is great, it’s important to have something easy to share. PaperClip illustrates this concept well: Their logo is fairly small and simple, but it’s useful in a variety of contexts. Whether for use in a flyer, infographic or letterhead, it’s clear and easy to superimpose over all types of backgrounds.
Numbers can be used just as creatively as text or pictures. Eighteen Parkway, for example, includes the number 18 within the actual word. If you have numbers in — or related to — your name, finding unique ways to include them can create some interesting designs.
Finding ways to actually show a word’s meaning is a rather creative way to make a logo more interesting. For example, Illusion creates the word’s “s” with negative space, creating a sort of “illusion.”
Don’t limit yourself to just one technique — use a combination to create an even more unique logo. Cinema Café, for example, uses negative space, an image within an image, and a black-and-white palette to create an amazing piece.
Typography is incredibly important in design; the wrong font can communicate a message you don’t intend to send. Using a font that represents your brand, while still being professional, is crucial. Victory Art is a great example — it uses an expressive script font that accurately reflects its mission.
As they say, “a picture speaks a thousand words.” Sometimes, with the right image, you don’t need any text at all. Lion Record Label, for example, doesn’t need the name at all; you can clearly understand the name from the image provided.
Playing around with style can create a variety of options you may not have even considered. Besides implementing an image within an image, Business Women Association, for example, uses a very hard-edged style, purely in black-and-white. Create your logo using different styles, and see which works best for you.
Pun-based humor (mentioned above) isn’t the only way to elicit some laughs with a logo. Logotomy has a rather entertaining example — it illustrates a “lobotomy” being performed on one of the word’s letters. See what you can do with your words and images to create a humorous (but appropriate) effect.
Think of how your logo would look 10 or 15 years down the road. Would it still appeal to your audience? Look at King Land’s logo — it’s not obvious when it was made, and it instead uses techniques not specific to a certain age.
Repeating certain elements can do a number of things: It can make a design more coherent, save time, and even make it more memorable. Wine Forest does this in a way that works very well, repeating the basic shape and formation of the “wine bottles” in the trees, while also varying size so the logo is more interesting to view.
Traditional, hand-drawn logos can evoke nostalgia and create a non-commercial, authentic feel, such as Lacalaca’s logo. If you own a small business or want to create a welcoming, friendly feel, a hand-drawn logo might be the way to go.
Logos shouldn’t be too reliant on color; they should be able to stand on their own, regardless of how they’re viewed. Logos like the one by BP (which uses shadows to great effect) can be understood in almost any format, regardless of whether there’s color or not.
There are lots of ways to create a fun, memorable logo that expresses your purpose and product. Start experimenting, and see what tips and tricks work for you, and let us know what you think of these logo samples in the comments section below.
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