Archive for May, 2011

In The Footsteps of Marco Polo

Denis Belliveau and Francis O’Donnell took a wild idea — retrace Marco Polo’s entire 25,000-mile, land-and-sea route from Venice to China and back — and spent two incredible years of their lives making their dream a reality.

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The thinking behind the world’s most famous logos

Nike Inc. has proven itself in every corner of the competitive business world. Starting from the athletic shoes to the apparel and accessories, Nike has confirmed that it rules the sportswear industry. This position has been accomplished by making a strong impact on the audience through its powerful logo. It’s quite hard to find an individual who does not recognize the Nike logo. From decades, Nike logo has established a well stable and recognized attitude and still holds the ground strong enough to pursue further.

The Nike logo, also known as the “Swoosh”, is an emblem created in 1971 by an outstanding graphic design student, Caroyln Davidson, at Portland State University. She started as a freelance worker for the company, Blue Ribbon Sports, owned by Phil Knight. Working together they selected the mark now known as the Swoosh worldwide.

Nike logo, the Swoosh, can be merely described as Simple, Fluid and Fast. These words depict the Nike logo that has successfully grown to be one of the most influential insignia throughout the world.

Elements of style:

Nike logo illustrates an imposing image on its spectators through its solid features. Nike logo is a corporate identity that has confirmed its best being.

Shape of the Nike Logo: Nike logo, the Swoosh, represents the wing in the renowned statue of the Greek Goddess of victory, Nike, who served as the cause of motivation for the distinguished and audacious warriors. Initially, the mark was regarded as “the strip” but was later named as “Swoosh”, which describes the fiber used for the Nike shoes.

Color of the Nike Logo: Dull orange shade is used for the Nike logo which demonstrates the strong corporate image of Nike Inc. Through years, Nike logo has revolutionized to some extent. Its color had been once transformed to strong black.

Font of the Nike Logo: The Nike logo also features its identification name, which is inscribed in the simple bold font. The simplicity of the font in Nike logo portrays the brilliant commercial picture of the Nike Inc.



It was 1976 and Jobs has been spending time on a friend’s farm picking apples when he told Wozniak of his idea for the name of their fledgling I.T. company. Was picking apples the inspiration? Perhaps one fell on his head and knocked free this gem of creativity, a-la Sir Issac Newton? Perhaps he just wanted to be ahead of Atari in the phone book? Whatever the case, Wozniak was equally taken with the moniker and the name stuck. All they needed then was a logo.

The first Apple Logo Design was by Ron Wayne, who also co-founded the company. It was rather elaborate in comparison to its later incarnations; as it depicted Newton under the famous apple tree, deep in contemplation. Steve Jobs felt it was a little too intellectual, and that the details were hard to distinguish. For those reasons it was only used on the Apple I.

In 1977 a second attempt at Apple logo design was undertaken by art designer Rob Janoff. The logo design was very simple- an apple with a bite taken out of it, adorned with all the colours of the rainbow, albeit in the wrong order. The symbolism here was genius; the bite symbolized knowledge, as in the Garden of Eden, and was also a play on words, as in computer “byte”. The colours suggested vibrancy and energy, but the wrong ordering of these colours suggested a break from the establishment- freedom, daring and enterprise, sentiments most befitting such a revolutionary technology. As Jean Louis Gassee put it, “You couldn’t dream of a more appropriate logo: lust, knowledge, hope and anarchy”.

The Apple logo design remained unchanged until 1997 when Steve Jobs decided to change from the multi-coloured look to a solid coloured logo design. This was simply fitting with the more minimalist fashion of the time, and perhaps to herald in a new era with the new millennium.

The only obstacle faced by the Apple Logo being cemented in popular cultures collective consciousness has been ongoing legal scuffles with Apple Records. Both founders knew when they came up with the name, that it would only be a matter of time before Apple Records voiced concern. In 1981 an agreement was reached allowing Apple Computer to use the name provided they didn’t use the name for products related to music. This peace was short lived as Apple Records sued Apple Computer in 1989 fro trademark violation, and again in 2003. The first instance was settled out of court in 1991, the most recent development remains unresolved.

The Apple logo design is at once simple and unforgettable. So effective in fact that it has remained largely unchanged for 20 years. An apple with a bite taken out of it. A universally recognised symbol of knowledge- one that remains emphatically so in this knowledge driven age.



In 1956, John J. Graham created an abstraction of an eleven-feathered peacock to indicate richness in color. This brightly hued peacock was adopted due to the increase in color programming. NBC‘s first color broadcasts showed only a still frame of the colorful peacock. The emblem made its first on-air appearance on May 22, 1956.[1]

On September 7, 1957 on Your Hit Parade the peacock was animated and thereafter appeared at the beginning of every NBC color broadcast until a revamped animation appeared in 1961. Its musical backing was a gong while the peacock began its formup, then an announcer saying “The following program is brought to you in living color on NBC” while the music crescendoed and after that a bombastic nine-note flourish while the peacock’s feathers changed color and finally “filled out”. According to Game Show Network executive David Schwartz, the first announcer who spoke those famous words behind the Peacock graphic logo was Ben Grauer, a familiar voice on NBC since 1930. There is a variant where the peacock changes its feathers and jumps and his feathers change into multi – color words that say “NBC”.



The CBS Eye

The CBS Eye is now a world-famous logo seen by millions of people every day. Golden’s design helped to highlight the reputation of CBS as a major outlet of world news, and symbolized CBS “looking at the world.” Its simplicity and versatility made it ideal for use in a variety of formats, to help build the corporate association between the Eye and CBS.

Golden designed the eye to be balanced, and used good proportions between the outer circle, the inner circle, and the white space around the “pupil” of the eye. In many advertisements, the white space in the design functioned as negative space while the outer and inner circles were overlaid with a photograph or still-frame from a television program. This is one way in which the simple Eye design could be used over and over to imprint the Eye into the American consciousness as a symbol of CBS, and to tie the CBS corporate identity to the programs that aired on CBS.