Whenever I see a really good logo or icon on a web site or even on promotional items, I save a copy to refer to later when inspiration is running dry, as a reminder of what a great logo looks like.
I’m sharing my on-going collection here for the inspiration of others.
I’ll explain what I love about each of these.
I’m not advocating copying anything you see here, respect the copyright of the designers, but look for the features that work and seek to apply them in your own logo designs (or creative briefs).
So, in no particular order…
This logo has loads of character & energy, created by the jaunty letter positioning and the mass of competing diagonals on the saw blade.
This guy Bojan Stefanovic is a really productive logo designer who turns out heaps of top-quality work. Check out his portfolio for more good logos. His own logo is one of my personal favourites, with really strong black text and the super-iconic bold-coloured square.
Things (by Cultured Code)
Love this one, for a simple task-management app! A real-world metaphor delivered with enough simplicity and maintaining a strong shape and contrast.
I love the way this uses just 3 colours on a white background (negative space) to create the illusion of space. Strong, simple shapes and diagonal lines make for a recognisable and powerful logo.
A great solution combining “rolodex” with “people”. Genius.
Really strong font feels organic and energetic while making a pleasant shape.
Nice organic logo combines with a serif font to create a human-feeling brand.
I simply love the way black alone is used to suggest the shape of the man’s shirt (the “negative space” illusion). First class logo.
Simple geometric shapes making a recognisable image that reflects the product name.
It’s always good for your logo to reflect the brand name (but not essential!). This one says “Swap” and “Tree” in a pretty simple form.
Soft white and blue work well against the dark grey background. The font is original, and the spanner echoes the “Tools” theme.
Few colours and a simple shape still create a nice 3D illusion. The diagonals created by the angle give the logo a sense of dynamism.
Simple but recognisable form. Green/white/black creates a sharp combo.
Email Centre Pro
This one comes into the general category of “Strong shape with rich surface effects”. While there are a lot of colours going on, the clear outline make the form recognisable. You could reduce the colours down to 3 without losing the essence of the logo.
Not really a classic logo (may not be a logo at all, I can’t access the site), but the strong points on the diagonals really catch my attention.
>gOS Operating System
The grey on white plastic with one strong highlight colour is strong yet feels open and welcoming.
When you’ve got a typeface/text combo that creates a silhouette this strong, you don’t need anything else.
Although the “bleeding pixels” style was done to death in about 2004, this shape is pleasant and energetic, with an iconic silhouette and dynamism from the angled plane.
The clasped hands speak directly about the service on offer, and also make a pleasing heart shape. Simple lines reduce the hand shapes to the most abstract form, while retaining recognition.
Complex, but still a recognisable shape, combined with really pleasant colours.
A simple, cheerful shape and strong colours, with added surface effects.
Strong outline and star with contrasting colours make for a striking and recognisable logo.
The first distressed logo of the bunch. Again, this would work on shape alone, without the grungy effects, thanks to outstanding use of typography. By UK web design agency Satsu.
Soft and friendly thanks to the pastel colours and organic shapes & attitude.
Another real-world object simplified to the basic essence.
Not a beautiful piece of work to my eyes, but that doesn’t matter because the type and shapes create such a strong, memorable shape. Logos don’t have to be lovely to be appealing and effective.
Really simple and cheeky logo that reflects what it says. Suggests that the service will be simple & straightforward.
A basic concept with the illusion of 3D space, combined with subtle shine make a logo that sticks in your head.
One of the most basic geometric shapes simply echoes the “buzz” theme effectively. The combo of light & heavy weights in the type work well (you need to use weights at least 2 steps apart for this effect to work).
The first “shiny table effect” in the list. You just can’t help but want to pick up the shiny ball, aided by the intense contrasting red. Quite unique specular reflection too.
A complex shape still creates a dynamic and iconic image. The added shininess gives it a 3D tactile appeal.
Just 2 main colours in the palette, with a very recognisable outline, and added polish make this nice & appealing.
Nothing unique about the speech bubble, but logos don’t have to use unique components to work. Note the heavy/light text weight combo again. The rounded “im” gives a friendly, easy feel.
Great combination of flat text with 3D illusion on the box. Simple and iconic.
Highly characterful typeface combined with a lovely organic flower image. Friendly and cheerful is just right for the brand and the name.
I don’t love the chimp character, but a logo doesn’t have to be loveable. Minimal colour palette and quirky, friendly design lend the HTML email service a simple feel.
A strong favourite of mine. The “W” reflects the ups & downs of the market with simple colours and a dynamic, 3D effect.
Not particularly likeable, but the outline is clear & strong, and the double-meaning of the “cake” and pie-chart are “just clever enough”.
What impresses me about this logo is the way it creates a believable eye image using only circles, managing to get in the specular highlight.
I like the metaphor and clear outline, but I always wonder how the effect would be altered if the low tonal contrast in the porridge were missed.
Simple form with combination of natural greens suggests “growth”.
Fairly complex shape is still recognisable, evoking a friendly, old-world sense of community. Maybe it doesn’t need the outer ring?
Highly distinctive shape does just enough to suggest “people coming together”. While it’s really powerful here, the logo’s far too small on the site itself, for some reason.
The bold, strongly-vertical font feels serious and businesslike. Simple and effective.
The electric blue & yellow colour combination, together with the suggestion of flattened perspective feels very youthful and “pop”, which perfectly suits the brand.
Simple geometry again, and relatively small colour palette, making a rich logo.
Simple geometry, only 5 colours used, making a credible 3D (isometric) form.