History of Logo Design: from Ancient Times to Modern Era

History of Logo Design: from Ancient Times to Modern Era

What comes to your mind when you think of logos? Do you immediately recall a brand or product? Well, that’s the power of a logo! Today, businesses are engrossed into all sorts of branding activities out of which logo design occupies the central position. You will not find any business without a logo or trademark these days.Logos allow business owners to distinguish themselves in a world cluttered with thousands of brands.

So, how did this all get started? Well, there obviously are different ideas and viewpoints describing the actual evolution of logo design. Let’s take a sneak peek at the world of logo design including its past, present and future as well.

Pictographs, an Earlier Adaption of Logos

Ancient pictographs by Shutterstock
Egyptian hieroglyphics by Shutterstock

Logo finds its genesis in Greek etymology. It is derived from ‘logos’ meaning ‘word’. The Greeks used to heavily rely on logos to get their concealed messages across kings and rules. Moreover, many ancient Roman and Greek coins showcase monograms (referred to as logos in the present era) of their kings. If you think only the Greeks and Romans used logos for different purposes, you might be slightly mistaken. The Assyrian, Mayan, Chinese, Egyptian and Babylonian cultures also made use of pictographs for communicating their ideas and words. Now, these pictographs can be termed as ancient logos. If we talk about the 13th or 14th century, the monograms as described above were transformed into trademarks. Farmers, goldsmiths, merchants and everyone involved in trading used trademarks. In fact, branding is centuries old. When there was no way of identifying their cattle, farmers imprinted signs on cattle using hot iron stamps.

Logo Design During Industrial Revolution

Coming to the 18th century, the age of Industrial Revolution, logo design & branding became all the more intense. Businesses, gradually, started embracing the branding culture in one way or the other. With products being manufactured on a mass scale, merchants & businessmen had to find ways to make their products different & unique. With the advent of technology, logo design became all the more popular. The rise in visual arts and lithographic processes, further added, to the growth of logo design. Talking about the 1890s era, logos found their way into corporate branding. The Prudential Insurance’s ‘The Rock of Gibraltar’ logo was a huge success. Then, there was the old Nipper trademark of RCA wherein a Dog ‘Nipper’ sitting in front of a phonograph had a slogan ‘His Master’s Voice’.

What’s Trending Now?

The present age of logo design & branding has its root in 1950s. The Chase Logo crafted in 1960 by Chermayeff & Geismar paved way for the modern logo design. Today, designers use latest technologies and include excellent graphics to churn out exemplary logo designs that simply take your breath away. With competition levels soaring new heights, logo designing has become indispensible for businesses. Also, if any business plans to launch a website, then logo plays a crucial role here. Now-a-days, you simply cannot afford to ignore the power of logo design. The logo design in recent years has become simpler and effective. Designers use various styles, cool fonts, visual effects etc to craft unimaginable logos for businesses.

What Lies in the Future?

Well, having talked about the past and present of logo design, it becomes obvious to discuss about what lies ahead for this vital part of branding. As designers become more experienced and new technologies get introduced with every passing day, logo design is expected to become all the more stronger and important part of marketing strategies for business organizations. No matter what skeptics say, logo design is here to stay and will continue to gain new heights in the years to come. What do you think?

Sources: The origins, history and future of logo design, Logos, a history.


#LogoDesign  #HistoryOfLogoDesign

Robert’s View

Logos are critical to your branding identity public recognition.

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Robert Chaen

Global CEO-Founder of ChangeU and Movsha Movers & Shakers, Hero-CEO Whisperer, Writer, The #1 Alpha Change Expert, Father of Asian FireWalking Robert Chaen is an International Keynote Speaker, writer, researcher, and corp games designer. He is famously known to be the “Hero-CEO Whisperer”, 1-on1 coaching with many CEOs and Celebrities for corporate strategies, staff & office political issues, personal branding, and even public figure OSHA safety drilling called Drager Defense. He has transformed CEOs and managers in Coca-Cola China, TVB Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong Airport Services, VADS, TM, Public Bank, Auditor General's Office Maldives, etc. He is the prolific creator and online Author of innovative management tools such as DragonCEO, Diamond Leader, Papillon Personal Effectiveness, OSHA Drager Defense, KPI Bank, etc. He is also the Founder of Movsha, an international networking with monthly mingles with MOVers & SHAkers, Angels, Entrepreneurs, CEOs, Celebrities, HR-PR-CSR, HODs, and the Most Influential IDEA people. ​Chaen is widely considered as one of the top International Platform Keynote Speakers for Resorts World Genting Senior Management Conference (Manila), 7-Eleven HK, Samsung, Coca-Cola China Mini-MBA @Tsing Hua University, Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong Jockey Club, The Story Conference where he interviewed Datuk Kamarudin (Chairman of AirAsia) and Siti Nurhaliza. He has been widely featured in TVB, AWSJ, CNBC, SCMP, The Star, and Sin Chew. As “The Father of Asian FireWalking”, he coached TVB celebrities (Ekin Cheng Yee-Kin) to walk on 650°C fire; and raised HK$68M in the world’s 1st and only live TV Charity FireWalk (TVB Tung Wah Charity Show), before Tony Robbins even came to Asia. If Robert can get you to walk on 650⁰C fire, he can inspire you to be THE BEST. He champions CN-HK-EU-US Tycoons to be philanthropic, and to be angel investors to support the next generation of Jack Mas, Steve Jobs, Richard Bransons, Steven Spielbergs, or Barrack Obamas. With some slick motivational speakers with fake doctorates out there, graduates often describe Robert to be "the most credible, empowering, truthful Coach" who believe in his graduates to believe in themselves. ​However, clients have described Robert as "The #1 Cool Badass Alpha Change Expert". He has the coolest first class stature, rapport and trust from clients. He will not hesitate to tell the badass truth ever so gently because clients are paying him big bucks to reveal the truth, find solutions, persuade the hostile HODs, and align cross-teams within the organization. Originally based in Hong Kong for 20+ years, he had worked with top Branding/Ad agencies at J Walter Thompson and Leo Burnett, and was a certified FranklinCovey (7 Habits) in USA, and NLP MasterCoach (USA). His warmth is known to soften the most hardened, resistant sceptics. He will inspire your team to Go for Top 1, or to be a Dragon CEO. With boundless energies, Robert owns 15+ successful business Joint-Ventures, and created unique products under his global VC network called Chaen's Angels VC. He is deeply passionate about ChangeUTH Youth CSR, Science-Based Medicine (vs. quackery), short films and Reality TV. Touched by a personal tragedy through the loss of his HK-born Portuguese wife, co-coach and business partner, Brenda José of 18 years, Robert explores the many ways in which the spirit world is communicating with the living with real scientific studies and evidence. He gives inspiring conferences on The Secret Afterlife.

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