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“Logos are Overrated”

“Logos are overrated”, said Michael Bierut, one of the most influential graphic designers of our time. Even if you haven’t heard his name, I’m sure you’re familiar with his work. He designed Hillary Clinton’s campaign logo, the new Verizon logo, the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) logo, and the list goes on. He’s big … and quite the celebrity in the Graphic Design field. By the way I’m gushing, you can probably tell he’s one of my design heroes. As a graphic designer, and someone who also enjoys designing logos, you may be surprised by my reaction to Bierut’s condemnation of the logo — “someone finally said it!”

In his Vox interview, Bierut explains the 4 types of logos and what really makes a logo great. The most impactful takeaway for me is that the logo itself doesn’t make a brand great, it’s everything else that the brand does — products, marketing, brand messaging, customer service, company culture, etc. We designers are not magicians, we can’t swing our wand and create a great brand in an instant. It’s the cumulative and hard work of all the individuals, within an organization, over time, that builds a great brand! We just create that empty vessel for you to fill with all the creative, meaningful ideas you want to share with the world …

Hope you enjoy his interview as much as I did!


Photo credit: SergZSV.ZP / Shutterstock.com

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