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Trends in logo design 2012 (Part 2)

Following on from the Part 1, here we look at the other trends in logo design identified by Bill Gardner, founder of the LogoLounge website.
By Rich Turnbull
17th July 2012
Selective Focus

This trend exploits the effects of field of focus familiar to photographers. Elements of the logo are pin sharp, while others appear distorted or blurred.

'This technique gives a soft dream-like quality that engages the viewer by demanding a second look if for no other reason than to confirm they are not going blind. This sharp versus fuzzy look is a perfect example of the design industry emulating effects from other visual sectors of the consumer's life.'


Certainly nothing new in this technique, but Gardner reported that it is becoming more prevalent.

'The concept of taking separate components merging from divergent directions and blending them together to create greater strength is one of an identity designer's oldest stories. This concept is carried to its visual extreme when the combining strands are a Technicolor array of diversity' noted Gardner.


Multiple geometric shapes grouped together in a repeating pattern, often sharing a common colour palette which create the effect of overlaps and transparency. Gardner describes the trend as follows:

'Aside from their striking beauty, these logos convey the concept of strength in numbers; combining elements creates a sum greater than the parts. These marks express a scientific nature based in math and give the assurance of precision and accuracy.'


White 'channels' are used to wrap around an object to create an almost three-dimensional look and feel - whether rendered with flat colour or gradations.

Technique used for creating a family of logos. Gardner notes that the variations occur on the surface of the logo or the technique used to generate the logo.

A common technique used for environmental / sustainability type companies. Not related to the humble brussels sprout, the logo focuses on the moment a seed first breaks and a leaf begins to uncurl and break the surface of the soil.  


A trend Gardner notes has been seen since 2007 - and to paraphrase the report - a technique done to death. Gardner reports that the trend has now developed into more of a reveal. One great example, launched at the beginning of 2012 is that of DC Comics. According to their press release:

'The design of the new DC Entertainment identity uses a "peel" effect - the D is strategically placed over the C with the upper right-hand portion of the D peeling back to unveil the hidden C - symbolizing the duality of the iconic characters that are present within DC Entertainment's portfolio.'

You can look at the new designs here: http://www.dccomics.com/galleries/dc-new-brand-identity

Arc twists

I don't think I could describe this trend any better than Gardner, so I'll just let his words speak for themselves:

'Geometry used to be simple when there were just circles, triangles, and squares. There may have been a few more oddball shapes, but I'm sure there weren't more than a dozen tops. Then this shape appeared. and it has become the graphic building block du jour. Similar in some respects to the Potato Chip trend, this appears to be a rectangle that has been twisted 90 degrees and curved simultaneously. It could be a hybrid between a piece of macaroni and a length of fettuccine.'

Sphere carving

Using a sphere has been a common technique to convey 'global' or 'self-contained'. This trend takes the technique one step further by carving intricate shapes into them.

You can of course, read the full report here.

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