Steve Douglas on February 26th, 2015

We culled some logo design tips from all our various lists and blog posts and boiled them down to 25. Then we made this nifty presentation.

As we posted last week, we’ve been experimenting a bit with Slideshare, the Powerpoint presentation sharing site, this being our second outing on the platform. ICYMI, here’s the first, Effective Colors for Logos and Brands. Below is an analog version of the 25 tips contained in the Slideshare upstairs, along with some links to supporting resources.

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Steve Douglas on February 21st, 2015

snippets note week of february 15

Photoshop turns 25, a load of new logos, great design resources, creepy emoji for introverts, Obama’s kumbia Terror-Busting logo, how the gig economy is either doomed or the end of us all, history of Warner Brothers’ logos and a pre-Oscars look at the Oscars logo. Etc.

It was a busy week around The Factor (with apologies to Bill O’Reilly, who’s in a spot of bother of his own so he probably won’t mind) what with Valentine’s Day, Canada’s Maple Leaf 50th Anniversary, a couple of snow storms and some of the coldest weather this winter. Still, we managed to shamelessly troll 50 Shades of Grey and explain why you see things in logos that aren’t really there. Now, it’s time for Snippets, our weekly look back at the week that was.

Without further adieu..

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not breasts logo

It is a logo designer’s worst nightmare. That ever-so-clever symbol is released into the wild and it’s interpreted entirely different than intended, often as something to do with sexy-time. There’s a name for that phenomenon. It’s called pareidolia..

In the most simplest terms, pareidolia (pronounced pare-eye-dole-ee-a) can be considered “mental pattern matching.” It’s whenever your brain sees something it doesn’t instantly recognize, goes rummaging through your file folder of known shapes and patterns trying to find a match and attempting to make sense of something that at first blush, it can’t make sense of. When the gray matter finds what it thinks is a match, it spits out the result, and you believe you’re seeing something you recognize. Usually, it all works pretty well and lickety-split. There are times though, when your brain can’t quite figure out what the object is, so it jams a recognized item, or pattern, into the equation and you believe you’re recognizing something that actually isn’t there. It’s almost a bug in your head’s software and results in some often weird stuff happening. It’s why people think they see pictures of Jesus in burnt toast. Faces in mountain ranges on Mars. It’s how many optical illusions work – think the “is this a vase or two faces?” image we’re all familiar with. It’s the basis of The Rorschach (inkblot) test. What’s this got to do with logo design you might ask? Plenty. See, pareidolia is what allows designers to break items into bare-bones components and symbols and still have them recognized. When it goes well, it’s makes for clever logos. When it doesn’t? Uhm..

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Steve Douglas on February 15th, 2015

Flag of Canada

Today is Canada’s “National Flag Day” and an extra special one as the ubiquitous Maple Leaf turns 50. A look at the sometimes raucous history of Canada’s national identity, as well as the Canadian wordmark, the first of its kind.

So you think you know logosThe day after Valentine’s Day is officially known as National Flag of Canada Day. A rather wordy title to be sure, but it commemorates the first day the Maple Leaf was unveiled to the public as being the official flag of the country. This year’s NFCD is an extra-special one, as it was 50 years ago today that (then) Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson raised the flag on Parliament Hill for the first time. At the risk of sounding like a history teacher, let’s do a quick cut-and-paste from Wikipedia to get us started: “The National Flag of Canada, also known as the Maple Leaf and l’Unifolié (French for “the one-leafed”), is a flag consisting of a red field with a white square at its center, in the middle of which is featured a stylized, 11-pointed, red maple leaf. Adopted in 1965 [February 15th to be exact, hence this post] to replace the Union Flag, it is the first ever specified by statute law for use as the country’s national flag. The Canadian Red Ensign had been unofficially used since the 1890s and was approved by a 1945 Order in Council for use “wherever place or occasion may make it desirable to fly a distinctive Canadian flag.”

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