GAP, Big Ten Conference, Comedy Central. All bashed recently for new logos. It happens every time. A high profile identity is launched and immediately the pickers start. They're the ones who like robins seeking worms in the grass after a rain, pick things apart. Appropriately most of them are tweeting on Twitter. Usually the commentary comes down to "I like it" or "I don't like it." The word "sucks" comes up a lot. A commentator on Michigan Public radio who curiously qualifies himself as "just one person, armed only with a pen, a few cocktail napkins and a couple cans of cold beer" even weighs in with his own ideas in a piece called "This Logo Stinks".
This week the Rio Olympics unveiled its logo for the 2016 games. I rarely use the term beautiful when talking about graphic design, but I will here. Not to disappoint, the pickers immediately started digging for worms. Talk of plagiarism reared its head. Turns out there is a resemblance to another logo for the Telluride Foundation. Yeah it's similar -- but plagiarized? I doubt it. I'd go out on a limb to say the Brazilian designers with the skill to create this had no need to be copying the work of anyone else.
Painters mix paint colors to make new ones. Mix too many colors, and eventually you have grey. I hope every organization that launches a new logo does it with the commitment that comes with a well thought strategy -- usually a good story. That's the best defense against pickers. If they all had their way, everything would be gray.
Copyright 2011, Bremmer & Goris Communications, Inc.