Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The More Things Stay the Same...

Are you a Nickelodeon kid? Or a parent of one?

Alex Varnese, over at the Duarte blog, has a fascinating post on logo development of a couple of icons of the 90s - and what lessons they have for us today.
The Nickelodeon identity was created by the same people behind MTV’s generation-defining logo, and it shows–just as MTV needed the visual flexibility to keep up with ever-changing music trends, Nickelodeon needed a way to reflect the spontaneity and imagination of their programming. In both cases, the result was not so much a traditional “bug” but a more modular core that could be modified, rearranged and repackaged indefinitely while remaining surprisingly memorable.

His point: ... while brands tend to live and die by their consistency, it’s worth remembering that two of the most iconic logos in the pop culture lexicon were built with the goal of constantly changing. I think it’s an interesting lesson, easy as it may be to forget while a client is breathing down your neck. But we can all probably think of a few trademarks that would do well with a little less order and a little more good-natured chaos.

Check out this site for all the details of the "official" logo guidelines.
What does it mean for your world when consistency has to be designed to be constantly changing?

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