A look back at the 2010 HOW Logo Design Awards

This year HOW Magazine sponsored the first HOW Logo Design Awards competition. I was honored to be asked to judge the magazine's first event of this kind.

Over 800 student and professional identity designs were submitted to the competition. It would be my responsibility to choose ten logos to be honored. Thankfully, the Editors and staff of HOW Magazine initially reviewed and selected about 350 logos for me to judge personally. The winning designs have been announced and posted on the HOW website.

Here's a bit of a recap, with my brief comments:

• Hayneedle (Design by: Lippincott - USA) - "Simplicity at its best—in type treatment and graphic elements."

• Thomas & Gray (Design by: 22squared - USA) - "Hitting the mark in creating a logo meant to convey 'distinction, tradition and timeless elegance.'”

• Dirty Ice Cream (Design by: Dirty Ice Cream Design - Phillipines) - "A beautifully executed, retro type treatment that beckons the viewer deeper into the design."

• Willoughby (Design by: Willoughby Design - USA) - "A major player in identity design shows how it's done—all while taking a chance on a non-traditional logo treatment to represent itself."

• New Sheridan Hotel (Design by: Urban Influence - USA) - "The history, culture and Western sophistication of Telluride, CO, are communicated in a crisp, modern presentation."

• Airplot (Design by: Airside - UK) - "This is a unique and intriguing, modular logo that allows for multiple uses and adaptations as needed."

• Lan Su Chinese Garden (Design by: Sockeye Creative - USA) - "This is an eye-catching, designerly twist on traditional Chinese imagery."

• Bronx Zoo Student Project (Design by: Carrie Madigan - USA) - "Inviting child-like imagery is in this logo, but there’s much more to be seen when taking a second look."

• Michael Bach Gastroenterologists (Design by: Josef Stapel Design - Germany) - "Never has the human digestive system been portrayed so elegantly—very clever letterform play."

• Renaud Merle (Blackbird) (Design by: Renaud Merle - France) - "A graphic smile delivered through two “r” letterforms creating a subliminal “m” with the extra treat of a fun blackbird image."

In addition, I wrote: "Over all, I was very pleased with the originality, execution and attention to detail exhibited in the hundreds of logos reviewed. Many designers submitted excellent showcase pieces that successfully conveyed their illustration talents, design skills and type treatment expertise.

"If I have any general criticisms, they are that a number identity designers need to break away from following current trends to create logos that may have greater longevity as an identifying symbol. And as entrants were given the opportunity, a short description or explanation of the logo submissions would have been very helpful as a judging tool for quite a few examples.

"Three of the final logos selected caught my eye on my very first review of all of the submissions. Narrowing the entries down to 100 logos was difficult; to 50 a real challenge; and to 20 was nearly impossible. I feel the 10 final logos selected represent the best of the best. After making my final selections, I was pleased to learn that five countries, large and small firms, and a student designer were represented.”

© 2010 Jeff Fisher LogoMotives

Toot! Toot!*: Summit Creative Awards recognizes Stumptown Clowns identity with silver honors

The Stumptown Clowns identity, by Jeff Fisher - Engineer of Creative Identity for the Portland firm Jeff Fisher LogoMotives - has been recognized with Silver honors in the Summit Creative Awards. The awards honor and celebrate the creative accomplishments of small and medium sized advertising agencies and other creative companies throughout the world with annual billings of under $25 million. Thousands of entries, from 25 countries, were submitted for consideration this year. Since 1998, Fisher has received 18 of the Summit Creative Awards honors, in a variety of categories.

After attending Clown School in 2009, and becoming a member of the Portland Rose Festival Amtrak Cascades Character Clown Corps, the designer and several clown pals opted to form the Stumptown Clowns troupe for non-festival public appearances. When the name was adopted, Fisher immediately visualized a graphic clown face within the needed letterforms.

Judges for the 2010 Summit Creative Award were from both large and small-size companies including J. Walter Thompson USA, Inc.; Promoseven McCann Relationship Marketing; Pixel & Co.; Bates Ukraine; Wieden & Kennedy; Hal Riney and Partners; Strategy & Beyond, Turner Studios; Grey Advertising; MWW/Savitt; TBWA/Chiat/Day; Young and Rubicam; Leo Burnett; NYU; Turner Studios; Mfx, Inc.; Ogilvy; XM; and Saatchi & Saatchi.

Earlier this year the Stumptown Clowns logo received an American Graphic Design and Advertising Award.

Fisher, a 32-year design industry veteran, is the author of Identity Crisis!: 50 redesigns that transformed stale identities into successful brands and The Savvy Designer's Guide to Success: Ideas and tactics for a killer career. He is currently writing the book Logo Type, about typography in identity design, with a scheduled release in 2011.

The designer has received over 600 design awards and his work has been published in more than 140 books on identity design, self-promotion and the marketing of small businesses.

More information about Jeff Fisher, and his design and writing efforts, may be found on the Jeff Fisher LogoMotives blogfolio.

(* If I don’t "toot!" my own horn, no one else will.)

© 2010 Jeff Fisher LogoMotives

Publication Logos

(Clockwise from upper left)

The Sentinel
Client: The Sentinel
Location: Portland, OR USA

A logo redesign for a monthly North Portland neighborhood newspaper involved combining letterforms from two typefaces, Boca Raton and Rockwell, to create a unique type treatment of the word "Sentinel." A third typeface, Helvetica Neue, was introduced for the line of location text. The design appears in the book American Graphic Design & Advertising 25.

Read more about the redesign of The Sentinel identity.

Chorus Quarterly
Client: Seattle Men's Chorus
Location: Seattle WA USA

Following my design of the logo for the Seattle Men's Chorus, I created the identity and format for the organization's quarterly membership publication, CQ. Bodoni FB Bold Condensed was used for the large letters, with some customization on the "Q." The name was spelled out in Avant Garde.

Just Out
Client: Just Out Newsmagazine
Location: Portland, OR USA

The redesign of the identity for this statewide newsmagazine, for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered communities, gave the publication a fresh, contemporary look. The type used was Gill Sans. The logo won an American Corporate Identity 22 award. It also appears in The Big Book of Logos 5, 100's Visual Logos and Letterheads and Basic Logos (Spain).

Read more about the Just Out logo.

Multnomah Monthly Magazine
Client: Multnomah Monthly Magazine
Location: Portland, OR USA

The typefaces Italia and Souvenir Outline were used in the early 1980's to create the identity for this art and literary publication. Dry transfer lettering was used at the time.

All logo designs © 2012 Jeff Fisher LogoMotives. All rights reserved.