Well, if 2011 taught us anything at all, it’s that the trends in design were much different than the trends in 2010. And the same held true with 2012 compared to 2011, and it’s obviously ringing true again this year, with 2013’s design trends being a bit different than the trends of twenty-twelve.
Not everything has changed around, and not everything will. But when it comes to the type of logo you create for your brand, it is important to realize what’s trending up in the world and what’s on its way down the drain. You don’t want to waste your money and time on a design that’s doomed out of the gate.
Designing with what’s trending now will offer you a level of protection against trend changes in the future (as we’ll discuss below with brands like Facebook and Apple). The important thing is that you take note of these design trends now before finalizing a logo.
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What’s Trending Up
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Sharper, Crisper Angles
So, something like this, with sharp, crisp angles, covers a lot of different logo designs currently in use, not to even mention a seemingly infinite supple of possibilities. To help put this in a better context, look at the Carolina Panthers logo below.
This logo was obviously created before 2013 (as all logos listed here have been), but it gives a great example about what’s trending up. Notice how sharp some of the angles are here, while still holding a good shape. The lines are also very clean, using three very basic colors to create a crisp, unique image.
When you think of a symmetric logo, you might think of Mercedes-Benz, the Golden Arches, Adidas, the Recycling logo, and other logos which display a good balance or even perfect symmetry. And while symmetry isn’t trending down, asymmetry is trending up.
As seen with the Federal Express (FedEx) logo, there’s really nothing symmetrical about it, other than the fact that the beautiful and intentional asymmetry of this particular logo created a perfectly symmetrical arrow between the E and X. This is definitely a trend you may want to think about using in your design. Having asymmetry lead to hidden symmetry shows real forethought and creativity.
Earthy, Natural Colors and Designs
Using natural colors and earth tones in designs in 2013 is trendy for a couple of different reasons. The biggest reason, of course, is the push for industrialized nations to do more to go green. A company displaying these types of colors in their logos is usually making a green statement.
Seventh Generation, for example, gives you a good idea about what type of company they are from their logo. Using an actual leaf was a great idea. Not that you should copy it, but going with more nature-friendly earth tones is something that may ensure your logo is memorable.
More Words and Lettering
Using actual words or, at the least, initialism and acronyms is something that’s trending up in today’s marketplace. Now, there are ways to mess this up (as with embossing, which we’ll discuss below), so be careful about your lettering. Use Google as a prime example.
Google’s name is very unique and memorable, but this type of logo is big this year for its simplicity. Instead of trying to do too much with a design, the company’s name can oftentimes serve as the best logo imaginable. Just add some shadowing and some color, and you might have a winner.
What’s Trending Down
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Those Awful Bubble Letters
Okay, it’s 2013 now. Enough with the bubble letters. Those round letters may be a little easy on the eyes, but unless you’re selling clown shoes or kids’ party supplies, this is a trend that should stay down indefinitely.
Granted, eBay’s version of the bubble letter logo wasn’t the worst offender out there by a long shot. But even they knew that it was time to change and to keep up with the times.
It’s difficult to tell embossed lettering through a photo, and especially through a computer-based logo, so this has much more to do with those business cards and brochures you’re making. However, some company logos, like Gucci and Nikon, just appear as if they have embossed lettering, even on a flat photo.
There’s really nothing nice about this Gucci logo as it pertains to the modern age of logo design. We’re dealing with slick, crisp images these days that pop on mobile screens for a completely different reason than this pops (i.e. raised lettering).
Shiny, Glossy Logo Designs
Not every glossy logo out there is a bad design. The idea behind this article isn’t to rip into the designers per se (although some do deserve it). It’s more to show that some things have just been done to death in the past and are no longer trendy by any stretch of the imagination.
Logos like Apple’s apple and Facebook’s lowercase “f” are still popular today, but the glossy style they use is not trending. Why isn’t this style trending? Well, it’s in part due to the success these big companies have. When gloss is used in this context today, it’s seen partly as a rip-off attempt.
Busy, Busy, Busy Logos
In terms of logos that have a lot going on, the fact of the matter is that simpler has always been better. However, some logo designs get away from the norm by showing a lot of uniqueness in their designs. Others get away with it because the brand behind it is just better. But in 2013, that busybody logo, with explosions and multiple design elements, etc, is just out.
As you can see from this particular 2012 Olympic Games logo for London, there’s so much going on here that even its best element (the Olympic Rings) is a bad element. They’re all white for starters. And then you have purples and yellows and jagged lines. It’s just a mess. A busy, exploding mess.
When you’re discussing how your logo should be created with a service like Logosack, take into account what’s actually trending in 2013. You shouldn’t base your logo design solely on trends, but it’s always good to know what’s in and what’s out in terms of logo creation.