As a professional logo designer your job is to create unique, custom brand imagery for individuals or agencies who agreed to work with you. While there are many prerequisites to becoming a proficient logo designer, the most important one is probably being creative and coming up with interesting ideas for various projects. Since designers are artists that put graphics to life, they need a little help and inspiration along the way. Here are some of the most famous logo designers around the world with their legendary work to help inspire today’s budding designers.
Legendary Logo Designers and their Extraordinary Creations
One of the biggest benefits of working as a logo designer is the chance to create a masterpiece that’ll be remembered for generations to come. For example, the Louis Vuitton logo is one of the most famous and easily recognized fashion logos in the world. It was first designed by Louis’ son, Georges Vuitton, who created the symbol by using his father’s initials on the canvas. Although the logo underwent several changes since its inception, the emblem is still recognized as the brand’s corporate identity. Below, we take a close look at ten famous logo designers who shot to fame with their unforgettable creations.
If there’s one logo that’s seen by billions of people around the globe, for every single day of the week, it has to be the iconic Google Logo prominently displayed on all pages of the search engine. The credit, of course, goes to the famous designer Ruth Kedar who brainstormed and came up with the unique logo design for the tech giant.
Born in Brazil, Ruth earned a degree in architecture in Israel, and a Master’s in graphic design from Stanford University. In 1998, she was approached by two students at the Stanford Art Department to create a logo for their startup venture. They were Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the founding fathers of Google – the world’s most widely used search engine with a quarterly revenue of 55.3 billion U.S. dollars (2021). It is Kedar’s revolutionary design that has forever etched her name in the pages of design history.
The American super brand Nike is the reigning queen of the sportswear industry, and we’re very much familiar with its iconic swoosh logo with the “Just do it” tagline. However, not many of us are aware of the creative mind behind this famous logo. It is Carolyn Davidson, who was then a Portland State University student in need of some cash to attend her oil painting classes. Nike’s co-founder and a professor at the university, Phil Knight overheard Davidson’s need for money as he passed the hallway. So, Davidson was hired for just $2/hour to work on his side project: designing a fresh logo for the first football and running shoes that he was launching with coach Bowerman. This business went on to become Nike, the world’s biggest sportswear brand with global revenue of about 44.54 billion U.S. dollars. She needed approximately seventeen hours to create the seemingly simple but very intuitive swoosh.
An American art director and graphic designer, Paul Rand is highly acclaimed for his iconic corporate logo designs, including those for IBM, UPS, NeXT, ABC, Morningstar, Inc., Westinghouse, and Enron. Known as one of the founding figures of the Swiss style of graphic design, Paul was originally a professor emeritus of graphic design at the Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut where worked from 1956 to 1969 and from 1974 to 1985. He was later included in the New York art directors’ club hall of fame in 1972, after spending most of his life teaching design at Yale University. Although Rand passed away in 1996, his matchless contributions to the design world will be remembered forever. Logo branding was certainly one of his strongest attributes.
Globally recognized as one of the pioneers of branding, design, and visual identity, Landor is best-known for his design work on the Levi’s and Alitalia logos. At a time when logos were created using the cool, Swiss-modernism style, his designs were warm and inviting. In the words of Landor, “Products are made in the factory, but brands are created in the mind.”
He had a special ability to create designs with global popular appeal, such as the Coca-Cola script. Big brands such as General Electric, Levi Strauss, Shell Oil, and Japan Airlines benefited from his vision, ingenuity, and commitment.
Only a handful of designers could make the most of white space in traditional logos, and no one did it better than Lindon Leader. Although he may not be as famous as some of his contemporary logo designers, his work is definitely commendable and can be listed among the bests. Lindon’s most noteworthy creation is the iconic FedEx logo, featuring a hidden arrow between the letters “E” and “X. With more than 40 awards and a prestigious rank in the eight best logos in the recent 35 years by the Rolling Stone magazine, the arrow connotes speed, forward direction, and perfection. Clarity and simplicity are the two key aspects of Leader’s design philosophy. He has also delivered iconic logo designs for other brands like Hawaiian Airlines, Novariant, Alsco, and Fashion Park.
When you talk about some of the best logos in the world, you have to mention Apple’s iconic bitten apple. an American graphic designer of corporate logos and identities, printed advertisements, and television commercials, Rob is best known for introducing the mega-hit colorful Apple logo. He was just a novice art director in Silicon Valley when he was appointed to design a visual identity for a startup client – Steve Jobs and Apple Computer, Inc. Apparently, the bite in the Apple logo was purposely introduced to differentiate it from a cherry and the colored stripes were to show that Apple machines featured color screens. The bite could also mean a “byte” of information and convey the message that Apple devices are as fascinating as the “forbidden fruit” in the Garden of Eden.
In addition to designing Apple’s logo, Rob has also worked for Intel and IBM. However, it’ll probably be the iconic Apple logo that’ll always make him memorable in the history of logo design.
A celebrated personality in twentieth century graphic designing, Erik Nitsche was known for his meticulously designed books, annual statements, and setting page composition and type presentation. His plain yet striking designs, use of bright colors, and unique typography became his trademark.
In 1955, Erik was entrusted with an incredibly challenging task from General Dynamics, a global aerospace and defense company. His job was to change its brand image from an organization that produced war weapons to one that created technology to help support human development. Nitsche was to design a sequence of logos and posters to accomplish this project. He perfectly executed the task using a bunch of brilliantly fabricated, abstract designs. His work helped represent General Dynamics at the “Atoms for Peace” convention and forever changed the face of the General Dynamics brand.
Often referred to as the “master conjurer of the instantly familiar,” Paula Scher is as immediately recognizable as her unique works of art. Her designs combine elements of both fine art and pop culture, so they look modern, meaningful, and timeless all at once. She is best known and applauded for the iconic logos she designed for Tiffany & Co. and Citibank. Nevertheless, she has also created impactful, recognizable designs for several other companies to help them build a strong brand image. Scher was inducted into the Art Directors Club Hall of Fame in 1998, and received the Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design in 2000.
It is innate for humans to feel inspired by someone who has achieved something in life. It sparks a positive impact on their minds, which motivates them to work harder towards their goal. Whether you’re a budding designer who’s eager to create beautiful logos or someone with a lot of experience in the industry, you’d always need some inspiration for your creative work. Hope this blog with some of these world-famous logo designers motivates you to follow their footsteps.
Head of Design at DesignBro and is responsible for UI/UX Design, managing the global designer community, and ensuring quality levels of both designers and designs remain high.