Brands across the world use various methods to communicate with their consumers. The way a brand communicates helps in developing their brand image. Logos and taglines serve as the first point of contact which enables brands to establish their image.
Definition of Logo
A special sign that a company or a brand uses in the form of a printed symbol or design is a logo. Logo has its roots in the Greek word “logos” and is used by brands to deliver unspoken but powerful messages. Logos go a long way in establishing a brand’s identity and persona. An impactful logo can help a brand make a strong first impression, grab attention and foster brand identity, brand image & brand loyalty.
A perfect logo takes shape after brands and designers put in hard work and sleepless nights. Designers and brands understand the psychological impact that shapes and colors have on the human mind. A logo design is a combination of various colors and shapes. When various colors and shapes are merged, they trigger various emotions and affect the mind therefore brands and designers very carefully merge the two to create something unique.
Simply put, a good logo conveys what a brand does and values.
All shapes used for logo designing fall under three main categories: organic, abstract or geometric. Organic shapes are inspired by nature whereas abstract shapes come from the designer’s mind to convey powerful messages. Geometric shapes are the simplest and the most common shapes of all. Geometric shapes are squares, triangles, circles and their derivatives.
Organic shapes or nature inspired shapes have influenced many brands since they immediately attract a customer’s attention.
What are nature influenced logos?
Any design influenced by nature or are organic falls under the category of “influenced by nature”. Trees, animals, mountains and birds are all part of nature and are effectively used by designers to make some great logos. Man made designs such as paintings and ink droplets too form nature influenced designs. Leaf, trees, mountains, animals, stars and galaxies all can be categorized under nature influenced designs.
Since nature influenced or organic designs do not have negative connotations, designers and brands use it to attract customers to tell them that the product does not have any negative side effects. Designers use nature influenced shapes in bio and eco-friendly brands or products. Complex systems of creative process can sometimes be depicted through nature influenced designs.
We’ve curated a list of excellent examples of nature influenced famous brands logos for your inspiration:
1. World Wildlife Fund
Chi-Chi the panda is perhaps the most recognizable nature influenced logo on the planet. The black and white logo design outlines the curves of a bear and sends strong messages. The WWF works to conserve natural resources and local communities. Founded in 1961, the World Wildlife Fund aims at reducing the human impact on the environment. WWF has put offices around the globe. The company originally worked by fundraising with the focus on protection of endangered species. As WWF kept growing, so did its functions; WWF is now involved in operations such as the preservation of biological diversity and reduction of pollution and climate change. A logo maker can easily be inspired by this original logo.
2. Animal Planet
Wordmarks are fun and can still represent serious topics. The earlier Animal Planet logo outlines an elephant playing with the globe. This represents how nature intended the planet to be. The green represents the jungles and the elephant represents the natural habitat. The globe is shown as a ball, which means the earth is a playground for all animals.
Animal Planet is an American pay television owned by Discovery Inc. The channel is devoted to showcasing the animal world. The new logo with the jumping elephant was unveiled in 2018 and symbolized the new mission, “keeping the childhood joy and wonder of animals alive by bringing people up close in every way.”
An American non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and conservation of birds and their habitat, Audubon is a name synonymous with bird lovers. A Great Egret in flight symbolizes that wildlife is the most valuable treasure of nature. The Great Egret, once endangered, was one of the first to be saved by the bird conversationalists.
The original logo of Audubon was hand drawn which gives the logo an organic feel and lives up to the candid spirit of nature.
The society has over 500 hundred independent local chapters and is voluntarily associated with the National Audubon Society. The society also has many global partners to look after the birds that migrate beyond America such as the Bird Life International in Great Britain.
A beautiful dolphin silhouette in the letter “O” is what one is attracted to as soon as he sees the logo. The various shades of blue represent oceans and the diverse marine life within them. The shape of the dolphin invokes a bright, energetic and happy feeling. The shape of the dolphin is what brings the logo to life.
Headquartered in America’s Washington DC, Oceana has several offices spread throughout geographical locations around the world. Oceana conducts its own marine research and makes various policies conducive to oceans of the world. Current campaigns of Oceana include the following:
- Responsible fishing
- Curb plastic usage
- Fight against seafood fraud
- Climate and energy
5. National Wildlife Federation
The black silhouette of the 60-year-old character, Ranger Rick the raccoon, portrays the power and strength conservationists hold as a community. The badge style logo also conveys the message of community and partnership. Ranger Rick the racoon faces away from the viewers and is watchful. A “guardian of America’s wildlife and cherished wildlands”, the National Wildlife Federation logo is one of the best nature inspired logos.
The national Wildlife Federation can brag about being America’s largest non-profit conservation education and advocacy organizations. Formed with the aim to increase America’s fish and wildlife population, the NWF also works towards restoring damaged habitats.
6. Wildlife Conservation Society
A monogram with a winning combination of minimalistic design and vibrant colours, the Wildlife Conservative Society logo conveys powerful messages. WCS is devoted to protecting wild places around the world and the logo speaks exactly that. The earth-inspired-logo talks about a range of earthly habitats – from oceans to mountains and skies to forest! The centre of the “W” depicts mountains while the bottom depicts forests and grasslands. This monogram is a fantastic example of a nature inspired logo that designers can learn from.
A non-governmental organization devoted to the protection of the world’s largest wild places, the Wildlife Conservation Society is currently associated with many critical programs that would benefit wild places on earth.
7. Goodale State Park
Goodale State Park in South Carolina is the most sought after destination for canoe and kayaking trips. The fantastic logo design sets Goodale apart from the rest of the park because of its simplicity. The design depicts trees and a lake in Goodale. The tree in the middle looks like a paddle that invites visitors to enjoy water sports.
The land for this park was donated in 1973 by Kershaw County to South Carolina. N.R. Goodale was a local florist who motivated the creation of the park and the park is rightly named after him. Entry to the park is free.
8. Heal the Bay
A logo maker can learn a lot from Heal the Bay logo design. Coastal communities around the world must work together to protect marine life. Healthy marine life will disappear if they are not kept safe and clean.
A white fish outline in a watery backdrop does justice to the brand story. The fish with the bone displays marine life and the need for its protection.
Founded in 1985 by environmental activist Dorothy Greene, Heal the Bay focuses on the protection of marine life in Southern California’s Santa Monica Bay.
9. The Nature Conservancy
Take away the landmass and the blue oceans, the globe is still recognizable. The fantastic combination of words and pictures has a great visual effect. White leaves safely embrace the green globe. The bold “nature” along with protective leaves beautifully convey the organization’s goal.
One of the largest non-profit environmental organizations by assets and revenue in America, The Nature Conservancy has protected more than 119,000,000 of land thousands of miles of rivers on the planet.
The Ecological Society of America gave birth to The Nature Conservancy in 1951. The organization is expanding its conservation efforts in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.
10. The Natural Resources Defense Council
Some of the best logo designs are nature inspired and when it comes to the logo of the Natural Resources Defense Council, it is probably the best example of logo inspired by nature. Though NRDC is an environmental advocacy group, it does not have a “green logo”. The North Star conveys the message of direction. The three together signifies NRDC’s role in protecting the environment.
Founded in 1970, the Natural Resources Defense Council is a United States-based environmental advocacy group. Their programs include:
- Science Centre
- Climate and Clean Energy
- Healthy People and Thriving communities
The organization is headquartered in New York City with offices across the globe including New Delhi, Chicago and Beijing.
11. Green Business Alliance
The green logo with a leaf in the middle standing on the backdrop of the city signifies the need to go green. The city landscape conveys the message of busy city life. City has taken man far away from nature and there is a great need for him to get back to nature. The tree signifies nature and the leaf in the shape of a heart indicates life. Life is in nature. The logo very accurately conveys what the organization does, helping businesses go greener!
Headquartered in Florida, the focus of Green Business Alliance is to make corporates go green. The organization helps businesses take environmental friendly steps which in turn would boost their Corporate Social responsibility.
Carbon neutrality or zero carbon emission is what countries across the planet are seeking. The company logo is simple but is extremely powerful. A circle signifying the globe, blue is the sky above, green is the ground below and the golden arch in the middle signifying the Sun. The logo has freshness about itself and depicts how the world would look like without carbon in it!
The organization is leading the fight against climate change. The company is making it affordable for individuals and businesses to transit into cleaner energy. According to their website carbonfund.org, the organization achieves its goals through:
- Climate change education
- Carbon offsets and reductions
- Public outreach
Great logo designs are often simple and minimalistic and carbonfund’s is a great example of a logo which is simple yet powerful.
13. Whole Foods Market
Whole Foods Market, a company that believes in organic living and serving whole food to the community, is doing its bit towards supporting ecological causes. The Green backdrop signifies the company as environment friendly. The “O” in the middle looks like a whole fruit with a leaf on the top. The logo looks complete and conveys the kind of business the company does.
An American multinational supermarket chain, Whole Foods market sells products free from hydrogenated fats and preservatives. The company only sells products that store defines as “minimally processed foods.s”
Committed to fully eliminating plastic usage, the company works on an array of nature friendly activities.
A fantastic version of the Monte Fitz Roy Mountain located on the border of Argentina and Chile, the Patagonia logo very well describes the kind of work the company does. Patagonia promotes safe working conditions and fair labor practices through its supply chain. The world’s most successful activewear retailer, Patagonia aims at becoming carbon neutral by 2025.
15. Beyond Meat
Mass production of flesh by the “meat industry” is a significant contributor to the environmental crisis. Beyond Meat produces plant-based meat which is suitable for human consumption and does not impact the planet in a negative way. A Green logo with an outline of an animal shows that Beyond Meat not only cares for nature but is against killing of animals for food.
16. Green Options
A landscape management company, Green Options has been around for over 30 years. The name and the logo paint a complete picture of the company’s goals and intentions. A green circle with trees and the Sun, this nature inspired logo paints a positive picture of the company.
17. Planet Green
The logo of Planet Green, a Discovery Network channel, is as simple as it gets. A green circle: the way our planet was intended to be. The logo speaks a thousand words yet it is simple and minimalistic.
Simple designs, sometimes, are the most powerful ones and have the power to connect instantly.
18. Discovery Channel
A blue Earth with clouds, oceans and greenery, the Discovery Channel’s logo is amongst the most recognizable logos on the planet. The Earth as the channel’s logo very clearly introduces its purpose; “The World is Ours.” The channel has been devoted in creating highest quality content for its viewers all over the world since its inception in 1985.
19. Ausra (acquired by Orano)
The solar energy giant, Ausra, has a simple yet extremely powerful logo. The logo represents the Sun on a white background. The company does not use any green imagery and instead uses the orange Sun. The choice of colours are risky but has successfully set the company aside from others.
20. Forest Stewardship Council
Merging unrelated symbols can be very unpleasant to the eyes, but not in this case. The checkmark beautifully transforms into a tree with a single line. Forest green has been beautifully used in the logo and works well on multiple levels. The earthiness and deepness of the colors have an authoritative twist which shows Forest Stewardship council as a watchdog organization.
Nature inspired logos, as mentioned earlier, have the power to connect instantly with customers. These logos invoke the feelings of protection, trust and safety. A company may use a nature inspired logo to convey the message of it being eco friendly. These types of logos are an obvious choice for businesses that are associated with nature and outdoors such as theme parks or organizations working for an environmental cause. Businesses dealing in organic food or farming also use nature inspired logos.
If you are looking for a logo to connect with your customers immediately, nature inspired logos are best suited for you.
Besides having grown up in the design Industry, Christiaan has advised some of the world’s largest companies on their branding & packaging designs. Has been the resident judge for design awards, and has spoken at numerous global design & marketing events. Christiaan founded the London office of the award-winning Cartils agency, and has founded the DesignBro.com platform.