One perk of working as a logo designer is the opportunity it affords for your creations to go down in history as helping play a role in the success of some of the largest companies in the world. In this article, we’ll take a look at ten famous logo designers who were able to do just that, as well as the iconic creations that have earned them their fame.
Not many logo designers can boast that their creation is seen by billions of people every single day, multiple times a day. Of course, Ruth Kedar is no ordinary logo designer, and the logo she created for the tech behemoth Google is no ordinary logo.
Ruth Kedar was born in Brazil, earned a degree in architecture in Israel, and earned a Master’s in graphic design from Stanford University. It is her work on the iconic Google logo, though – a logo that the company continues to use to this day – that has forever etched Kedar’s place in design history.
The list of famous logos that designer Paul Rand has created certainly ranks as one of the most impressive that you will find. Known as one of the founders of the Swiss style of graphic design, Paul Rand is the man behind world famous logos such as the IBM logo, the UPS logo, the ABC logo, the Yale University Press logo, and many more.
In 1972, Rand was inducted into the New York art directors club hall of fame after teaching design at Yale University for the majority of his life. Rand passed away in November of 1996, but his contributions to the design world will certainly live on. Logo branding is definitely one of his strong attributes.
Few designers in history have made better use of white space than Lindon Leader. While Leader may not be as well known as some of the other so-called superstar designers, he certainly deserves all the world recognition for his work.
Lindon Leader’s most famous creation by far is the logo he designed for FedEx, which incorporates a perfect arrow pointing forward in the white space between the “E” and “X.” It’s a logo that has won numerous awards and consistently ranks as one of the top ten logo designs.
Only a handful of companies in the world are known more by their logo than they are the company name itself, and Nike is one of them. The designer behind the world-famous Nike swoosh is Carolyn Davidson.
Davidson actually designed the Nike logo in 1971 while she was still a student at Portland State University. Afterward, she continued working with Nike until 1983 and retired from her design career in 2000.
No list of iconic logos is complete without mentioning the Apple logo, and Rob Janoff is the designer behind it. In one interview, Janoff described how the iconic bite out of the apple logo was meant to signify a “byte” of information and convey the idea that Apple products are as tempting as the apple in the Garden of Eden.
In addition to designing Apple’s logo, Janoff has also done design work for IBM and Intel. However, it will most likely be his work on the iconic Apple logo that will always be his biggest claim to fame.
In 1955, designer Erik Nitsche was handed an incredibly tricky task. At the time, defense contractor General Dynamics wanted to change its brand image from a company that created weapons of war to a company that created technology that helped move humanity forward. Nitsche was tasked with creating a series of logos and posters to accomplish this task.
Although much of what General Dynamics was working on was top-secret at the time, Nitsche was still able to perfectly convey the company’s new approach using a series of brilliantly designed, abstract creations. His designs would help represent General Dynamics at the “Atoms for Peace” conference and forever shift the General Dynamics brand image.
When Walter Landor was working as a designer, there was a shift taking place in marketing. The days of store clerks recommending products to consumers were coming to an end, and Landor recognized the growing importance that great logo designs would have for helping set products apart from the competition.
His designs were warm and inviting when most logos were designed using the cooler, Swiss-modernism style. Today, Landor is best-known for his work on the Levi’s and Alitalia logos, through countless other companies that have benefited from the warm, inviting style he helped popularize.
Saul Bass is considered by many to be the most accomplished graphic designer in history. Known for minimal yet meaningful designs, Bass is the designer behind the AT&T logo, the Bell logo, the Kleenex logo, the Girl Scouts logo, and many more.
The average lifespan of the logos that Bass created is an astounding 34 years, and a great many of his logos are still used today. When companies often change their logo every few years, this is an impressive statement of the power and effectiveness of Bass’s designs.
Alan Fletcher was a British graphic designer who used both European and American style elements to create a design style that was all his own. Over the course of his career, Fletcher used that unique style to create some of the world’s most stunning logos.
Today, Fletcher is best known for his work on the Reuters logo and the V&A Museum logo, both of which incorporate flawless typography into a simple, eye-catching, and meaningful design. In 2001, Fletcher published a book titled The Art of Looking Sideways, which should be required reading for any new graphic designer.
Paula Scher has been described as the “master conjurer of the instantly familiar,” working to create logos that stand on their own as immediately recognizable works of art. Her unique style combines elements of both pop culture and fine art to create designs that manage to be both meaningful to the current generation and timeless all at once.
Today, Scher is best known for the iconic logos she created for Tiffany & Co. and Citibank. However, she has also worked with numerous other companies to help them create impactful, recognizable designs. Scher was named to the Art Directors Club Hall of Fame in 1998, and she received the Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design in 2000.