Symbol: “1,300 symbols organized into groups and sub-groups according to their visual characteristics.”
Logo: “1,300+ logos in 75 categories, classified by shape, indexed by sector.”
Clearly there’s going to be overlap between the two galleries, and they are very similar. In saying that, there are plenty of designs included that were created after Logo was released in 2007, and the more fleshed-out case studies in Symbol are a welcome addition, adding some context to the work.
An obvious difference is that this 2011 publication focuses solely on symbols, whereas logotypes/wordmarks are in abundance in Logo.
“They acquire value. These things become these vessels which so much is poured into over time—there’s a hell of a lot wrapped up in these things. They’re quite mundane, they’re part of our every day visual furniture, but take it away and whoof! That’s why it’s an interesting subject area.”
— ANGUS HYLAND
Quoted from a Q&A on The Atlantic (broken link removed, 2014).
It’s the kind of book I’ll look to if I want details on a specific logo (year of design, designer responsible, etc.). Logo has proved useful when drafting posts for Logo Design Love. I’ve dipped in and out these past years, and I’m sure I’ll do the same with Symbol. So a worthy addition to my small library.
Angus Hyland is a graduate of the RCA and a partner at Pentagram Design London. He is the author of C/ID and the best-selling The Picture Book.
Steven Bateman is a freelance writer who has worked with some of the UK’s leading design agencies. A regular contributor to Grafik magazine, he also writes for ISTD Condensed, Nico, and Varoom.
My thanks to Debra Matsumoto and Lewis Laney for the review copy.
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