Novum Gebrauchsgraphik, November 1986, LogoArchive Shop

Trademarks and Signs, Udo Zisowsky, 1986

In an age of norms and rationalization where the paramount goal is finding a system, a universally understandable technical terminology, the concept of the mark is still hard to classify.

'Sign' is the basic concept of the Latin word for marks and signs. It can be found in the derived words, signum, signet and signature. The English word, «sign» also means mark, designed signal. However, advertising uses only the trade mark as a rule to designate and protect the origin and also the merit/value of goods. The trade mark, the company symbol, the merchandise mark and all the other classifications of the concept, «signum» draw their visual options from everything that contributes to an eye-catching impact. The designing of a mark has proven to be far from easy, as often seen in the results. Every good sign and this includes wordmarks using graphic or typographic solutions, lettering connections and monograms - represents the unique, intelligent and practical ordering of drawn elements.

Designing as such, that is, the putting together of simple forms, does not lead automatically to quality. It is only the ability to recognize the design value of certain elements and to arrange them optimally that leads to a useful result. Every mark should be the sum of a thought worked out to its ultimate refinement and then made visible.

A good designer will never limit himself to any one means of expression, but rather attempt to reach his goal through various paths. But this doesn't mean that he allows himself to be led solely by his instincts and emotions. He knows that the consideration of practicality must determine the artistic form to a great degree, that each assignment has its special peculiarities and that only imagination and know-how lead to an optimal solution.

This is an article from the November 1986 issue of Novum Gebrauchsgraphik. Discover design books, LogoArchive zines and magazines available to buy here.

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