Posts Categorized: Icons

Subliminal Messages in Logos

I hate to use the word “subliminal” with logos, because ALL logos should be affecting someone’s mind below the threshold of consciousness. A good logo should be manipulating you to be attracted to the company or products with a simple story.

However, some logos have graphics that have been “buried” in the logo. So buried that the viewer doesn’t recognize it until maybe the hundredth time they’ve seen the logo, and that nice little “a-ha!” moment makes the logo even more memorable to them.

I was indulging in my two favorite pastimes-eating fast food and analyzing logos-when I noticed the outside of the Wendy’s bag had a hidden message. Can you see it?










Wendy’s changed their entire brand in March of this year, and with the change came a loss of the old nostalgic feel that their previous branding had. They use a more modern typeface, their stores are slicker, and the drawing is updated to be clean and fresh.





The simple one-color illustration use on their bags makes the implied message a little clearer, though, since it doesn’t have the distracting colors. It’s a touch of nostalgia I think they wanted to evoke into their overall message of great food. And who did we count on for great food in our childhood?









Here’s some examples of hidden meanings in other famous logos. I won’t incude the obvious FedEx logo, because readers of this blog are probably sick of reading about that.

Hey, that’s a biker!









Nice illustration of analog and digital technology.







They have everything from A-Z.









“Don’t worry, we still have 31 flavors”









Can you think of some more examples?

Rob Marsh

Football Season is Here.

Around here, there is nothing quite like the start of football season. The competition, the upsets, the Top-25, Game Day. It all makes for a great weekend.

And, it reminds us of a couple of logos we’ve done. Including one of our all time favorites.

Two years ago, we created a logo for a little company called First And Girl that specializes in football-themed jewelry. Stuff like pendants and charms for the little league team mom. They wanted a logo that was football oriented, but also feminine—not exactly a combination you see every day. But in this case, our design team delivered with an icon that represents both a huddle and the petals of a flower. It’s a logo I love and it was also recognized with an American Graphic Design Award. Check it out:



We’ve done a few other football-themed logos over the years. Some for fantasy football leagues, others for football video games, as well as the occasional team logo. Check out this illustrated logo we did a couple of years ago for a Youth and Adult Competitive Football League. The client asked to see an icon with players bursting out of the logo—almost superhero like.



Finally, another client approached us for a logo for their football game that is played entirely through email. They wanted a fun logo, but something that would appeal to adults, not just kids. They requested colors that would remind customers of a football field and wanted something that incorporated elements from the game itself. We presented lots of concepts, and this was the final result:


Rob Marsh

Logos I Love—Wading River

Speaking of green logos (which we were doing here), there’s another green logo that hangs prominently on our wall that I should have featured below.

Unlike the others, however, this one was featured as a winner in the AIGA 100 design competition a couple of years ago.

When the client approached us, they asked for something that felt “soft” and would make people “feel happy” when they see it. Then they described a scene with an oak tree and a pony-tailed girl reading an over-sized book near a river. Something that would be appealing to young girls, but not feel to “girly”. That’s a lot to put into a logo, but our designer did a phenomenal job creating this outstanding mark for the client. It’s a logo I love.



Of course, when you’re ready to start your own logo project, our logo design team is here to help.

Rob Marsh

Logos I love—Buzzword

A few months ago, we were approached for a logo by a new start-up. They asked for an icon that would incorporate a bee, but wanted something more artistic and abstract than just an illustration of an insect. In addition, it needed to be a mark that could be used for several different companies, all using the same name: Buzzword.

The client chose our most affordable logo package and received four different concepts, plus six additional tweaks to their favorite concept in their first round of revisions. One of the concepts we presented incorporated a yellow and black color scheme to represent an “abstract bee” and combined it with quotation marks, representing the company name. It is one of my favorite logos we’ve created lately:



Ultimately, the client selected another option we presented, that is perhaps more applicable across other business applications. In it’s final form, the icon is combined with a type treatment of the company name. But here, you see just the icon:


UPDATE: In the years that have passed since this article was posted, our design shop has closed and reopened under new management. However, the talented designers who did the work featured above can still be found at We’ve updated the following link to reflect that.

To put the talented designers at The World’s #1 Logo Design Portfolio Collection to work on your next design project, visit us today.