Blog Post 2: Contemporary Graphic Design

Eugene Yang

#3160515

 

Graphic Design A New History, written by Stephen J. Eskilson covers the history of graphic design, from the expansion of graphic design in the 19th century to contemporary graphic design. In the preface of this book, Eskilson addresses the significance of digital technology:

“This book emerged in the context of the radical changes that have revolutionized graphic design over the last few years. Digital technology, which had already substantially influenced the field for two decades has transformed the way in which many designers conceive of and execute their work” (Eskilson, 10). 

Even though Eskilson talks about digital technology and the development of it, and there are parts that this book introduces contemporary(digital) graphic design around the 90s and 2000s, I personally find the content for these chapters are little informationally lacking compared to the other parts of the graphic design history (understandable since the book was published in early 2010s). We live in an era where smartphones and internet, social media are part of our lives. Due to these enhancements of digital technology, the trend and the technology used for graphic design nowadays has a wide variety, and is changing quite quickly and radically. Therefore I believe that the history of graphic design development in the past 10 years is just as important as the history of the past graphic design development.

There is a part that introduces digital graphic design trends in this book, but I thought that it could address more various types of trends and styles by introducing new, active, and relevant graphic designers and designs and at this moment. For example:

 

  • David McLeod, 3D Typography

 

David McLeod, Metro AR-T: New York City, 2014
David McLeod, Metro AR-T: New York City, 2014

According to his Behance page, he is “a 3D Illustrator and Artist. Originally from Australia, he now lives and works in New York City. His work is focused on experimental and textural CGI illustration, bespoke typography and lettering”.

 

 

  • Isometric Design, Jing Zhang
Jing Zhang, Slack Illustration, 2019
Jing Zhang, Slack Illustration, 2019

Isometric design is “a method of drawing/creating a three-dimensional object in two dimensions”, quoting from Isometric Design & Illustration: An Eye- Catching Trend, by Carrie Cousins.

According to her website page, Jing Zhang is: “Originally from mainland China, Jing is an illustrator living in England, the epicentre of eccentricity and creativity.With her clients mostly from the advertising industry, she has been working for clients including the European Parliament, General Electric, HSBC, IBM, Canon, Samsung, Adobe and many others”

In conclusion, these artists I mentioned above are active and have worked with major companies such as Adobe, Toyota, Canon and more. They could be a good example to show the development of tools and programs used for graphic design. Also could portray the history of trending styles of graphic design past few years, and may help filling more missing information on contemporary graphic design in Graphic Design A New History. 

 

 

 

 


Works Cited

Eskilson, Stephen J. Graphic Design: a New History. Yale University Press, 2012.

Behance. “David McLeod on Behance.” Behance, www.behance.net/davidmcleod.

Cousins, Carrie. “Isometric Design & Illustration: An Eye-Catching Trend.” Design Shack, Design Shack, 5 June 2019, designshack.net/articles/trends/isometric-design-illustration/.

“About & Contact.” Jing Zhang Illustration, www.mazakii.com/About-Contact.

 

 

Design in the wild- DHL

Eugene Yang

#3160515

I’d like to think that the logo of DHL is one of the most iconic logos in the present. Before I started to write this blog, I googled ‘most famous logo designs’, ‘iconic logo designs’, and more, to get an inspiration. Then I found a lot of Nike, Google, Apple and so on- and of course, it goes without saying that these logos are very much iconic. However, DHL- was nowhere to be found. In this blog, I will be explaining about how the DHL logo was made, and why this DHL logo deserves much better.

DHL logo (2002-present), developed by Nitsch Design
DHL logo (2002-present), developed by Nitsch Design

Personally, I just love all the design elements from this logo. The mustard-ish yellow background and bright red colour from the typography goes well together, the colour scheme just draws my eyes to it. I like how there’s a line going across the typography so it does not look plain or boring, and three red lines on both sides give me a sense of speed, which I believe is suitable for express mail service company.

This design was created by Helge Rieder, who is a former creative director for Nitsch Design from 1995 to 2003. From his own article ‘An “ugly” T-shirt for  £185? Nuts’ Rieder states,

“From the beginning we developed a strong, concise and remarkable colour concept as the main anchor for the Deutsche Post identity. At that time DHL was already an established brand in the US and we decided to make only slight changes to the logo itself (adjusting the angle of the letters and the spacing between them, opening the counterforms and adjusting proportions and the shade of red) to bring it into line with the Deutsche Post brand family.”

 

 

 

DHL logo (1969-1983)
DHL logo (1969-1983)
DHL logo (1983-2002)
DHL logo (1983-2002)
DHL logo (2002-present)
DHL logo (2002-present)

Considering what Rieder said from the quote above and by the glance of these past logos, it is noticeable that not a lot has changed from the first DHL logo to the logo they have now. They all have the similar bold italic typefaces and they all give a sense of speed using lines and shapes. A big noticeable change is the change of colour scheme, from red and white to yellow and red colour palette.

In the same article, Rieder explains about DHL’s new colour concept:

The colour concept (replacing the white with the Deutsche Post yellow) was important for brand recognition. Still, establishing a global brand on a long-term basis requires market penetration and patience. Today DHL is a brand leader and almost everyone recognises its yellow vans.

 

The new colour scheme was applied to not only the logo itself but also other parts on Deutsche Post and DHL, such as  icons, brochures, uniforms, screen designs, packaging, and more, according to the post ‘Deutsche Post AG- Brand Identity on Behance’ by Helge Rieder.

I believe that having their own symbols/emblems, or a unique colour scheme, or a special typography recognized by most people are some of the important traits for brand logos to have. Such as Nike, Starbucks, Adidas, Mercedes-Benz and so many other big name brand logos have one or more of those things. And I’d say that DHL also has one of those traits, which made me believe that the logo of DHL is one of the most iconic logos in the world along with the brands I mentioned above.

 

 

 

(this looks more than 500 words but without citation it’s not)

works cited

“DHL Logo.” 1000 Logos The Famous Brands and Company Logos in the World, 1000logos.net/dhl-logo/.

Rieder, Helge. “An ‘Ugly’ T-Shirt for £185? Nuts.’” Financial Times, 30 Mar. 2016, www.ft.com/content/a948135a-ed08-11e5-bb79-2303682345c8.

“History.” DPDHL, www.dpdhl.com/en/about-us/history.html.

Rieder, Helge. “Deutsche Post AG – Brand Identity.” Behance, 28 June 2014, www.behance.net/gallery/188476/Deutsche-Post-AG-Brand-Identity.