Logo Design Trends Come and Go – It’s an Oxymoron


My thoughts and opinions only

As a freelance logo designer, there are plenty of subjects that I feel passionate about. In my previous articles on logo design costs and the general attitude towards logo design in general, I have also recently touched on the problem with logo design galleries and logo design trends. There is a big shift towards relying on trends as the answer to your next logo design. There are some articles on trends over at Logolounge.

Twitter started it

Angie (@arbenting) over at Arbent.net tweeted an innocent message during the week about logo trends to which I answered back.

Blindly following logo ‘trends’ typically goes against the point of creating a timeless logo. Trends come and go, the two don’t fit.

As Angie correctly pointed out a a reply, logo design trends is somewhat of an oxymoron.

Trends are just that, they come and go.

If you focus on a trend then you are at risk of creating a logo that is not lasting. The ultimate quest for a logo designer, in most cases, is to create a timeless logo.

The real risk here is when younger, less experienced and more impressionable designers fall prey to the media gossiping of logo trends. It’s almost an excuse for designers to abandon the real art of creating original and lasting identities, because in comparison, they are not nearly as cool looking.

Trends are not all bad

Keeping up with trends is great for the purposes of padding out the portfolio, and submitting to all the logo inspiration galliers, something I do myself. It’s also great to keep you on your toes and to play around with your imagination.

I don’t have anything against trends per sai, my worry is that it’s becoming too much of a big thing, too much focus on trends rather than what your client actually needs for a lasting identity.

Client needs over lastest trends

Your client is paying you to create a logo that has their best interests at heart, not to full fill and appease your own ego or to fill out your portfolio with cool logo designs and keeping up with your piers.

Trends are great for the website only logos, the web app, the website header.

What I am really focusing on here is the ‘real deal brand identity’ for the well paying serious client. They are not paying you just so you can create a trendy cool logo for  your own portfolio. Are we designing a logo for our own sense of self or for them? Maybe a fine line between having the cake and eating it.

Just keep this in mind

I keep saying it, and I think it’s worth repeating. Trends come and go. Logo designs ideally need to be lasting past the next trend.

The important thing here is for us to all have the confidence to see trends for what they really are. We are each capable of desiging ‘out of the box’. Ignoring trends when the latest trend actually goes against the brief from the client.

Disobeying the latest trend will not mean you get punished. Disobeying the client’s brief so you can follow the latest logo trend may be punishable with something called ‘reputation failure’.

Your responsibility is to the client, not your piers or the latest trend.

Trends do need to be observed but not fully relied on. Don’t become a trend lemming.



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Written by: Graham Smith: The Logo Smith
1st Posted: 2009/05/23 & Post Updated: 2019/09/17
Filed In Categories: Inspiration, Tips & Advice

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