When you think of the most popular brand logos, which companies come to mind? Starbucks, Nike, Coca-Cola and Facebook are a few that may stick out. But how do these companies come up with these logos that are popular and recognizable around the globe?
In this blog, I will give you some tips and insight for using colors, shapes and other design elements for creating logos.
The first step in designing is to determine what type of image you would like to create. You can find inspiration by looking at graphics in your favorite magazines, websites or ads and picking out elements that you think would work well for your image’s message.
Blue: In North America and Europe, in particular, blue represents trust and security and is peaceful and soothing. Facebook’s logo is an example as they use blue to imply trust, friendship and stability.
Red: The color red is bold and represents energy, love and also aggression. Coca-Cola uses this color on their cans. In Asian cultures, red symbolizes luck.
Green: In the United States, the color green makes you think about money and wealth. A lighter shade of green can provide a sense of serenity or calmness. Health, wellness and the environment are also associated with this color. WhatsApp, the free messaging app, uses green in their logo to represent the money you will save on texting by using their free service.
Yellow: The color yellow provides a cheerful and joyful feeling. Examples of this are McDonald’s “Golden Arches” and the cereal box for Cheerios. In Egypt, yellow represents happiness and good fortune as the statues of gods were often plated in yellow gold.
Purple: The color purple provides a sense of royalty, tradition and strength. In the Middle Ages, purple dye was expensive to make so only royalty wore it. In places like Japan it still signifies wealth and power.
Black: The color black offers a bold, sleek and sophisticated feeling. The automobile maker, BMW, is a great example of a corporation who uses this strong, classic color. However, in other places around the world, this color represents mourning and death.
White: The color white projects a feeling of innocence and purity. Based on the color’s brightness, it grabs people’s attention. There are many logos that use white space to make their ads or images more simple and pure. In the U.S., brides wear white on their wedding day to signify purity.
Circles: Circles represent positivity, wholeness and unity. Some famous logos are MasterCard, Chrome, NASA and the Olympic rings.
Squares: A square represents a solid foundation, stability, conformity and trust. Some popular logos that use the square are Home Depot, Legos and Adobe.
Triangles: Triangles represent power, strength, change and motion. Some famous logos that use triangles are Delta Airlines and Google Play; I am sure you can spot the symbolism.
Using programs like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop can help you create the perfect image. These programs have a great variety of filters, features and drawing tools, which allow you to make your ideas come to life.
By using different colors and shapes, you can create beautiful, brilliant designs and communicate your brand’s message to your consumers or potential clients.
Remember to consider the audiences in all of your global markets when creating logos and how they will react to the colors, shapes and messaging of your logo. Using designs that are appropriate globally will give you the best chance of success with consumers around the world.
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About the Author
Global Documentation Specialist. A native New Yorker, Kim has 20 years desktop publishing experience and approximately ten years’ experience in the localization field. Kim started her career as a PowerPoint specialist in Boston working for Bain and Company and then moved to Manhattan to work as a Graphic Designer and Desktop Publisher for JP Morgan Chase and Brown Brothers Harriman. Studying in Costa Rica began her love of different cultures and people. She took an opportunity at a localization company in Boulder, Colorado doing multilingual design with a concentration in the Adobe Suite application as well as Quark and FrameMaker. She eventually branched off working remotely. Her passion is snowboarding the rocky mountains of Colorado.More Content by Kim Harris