Yesterday we looked at some logos and tried to decide whether they were effective or not effective. In doing so, we didn’t use a lot of theory, just your personal preference.

This time, let’s focus on one of the most important principles of good design, Contrast.

What is contrast?

More about contrast:

There are many different types of contrast that a design might incorporate:

  • colours (not just black/white)
  • size
  • shape
  • scale
  • layout
  • type
  • alignment
  • and more!

So let’s look at some logos and focus on how the designers used Contrast.

Here’s a good one:

Obviously, we have a dark colour (the dark blue) and white, which helps everything stand out. It’s easy to read, even if you make it very small. There’s also that red text that contrasts with the blue, in order to make that bit of information stand out and show that it’s different.

Look at the different typefaces/styles of text. The maine HUMBOLDT text is a serif font. It looks really old and classy, but the CREAMERY line is sans-serif, it looks a little cleaner and more modern. Then we have the handwritten script style at the very bottom.

Look at the sizes of the text. We have three distinct sizes, but two of them are pretty similar, so only two really contrast, the big text and the smaller text. This shows us what’s more important and what’s less important.

We also have some interesting contrasting shapes. There are very straight, pointy edges sticking out the side, and a big, soft circular shape in the middle. The text is straight(ish) but it’s got a bit of a curve to it, and it’s surrounded by that soft circular shape.

The example below does not really work as well:

  • Everything is bright.
  • Everything is the same size.
  • Everything has that rounded rectangle look.
  • Nothing stands out. There are no levels of importance, so it just looks like one big block.


Once again, examine 3 different logos. Find 1 that is effective, one that’s not, and another one of your choice. Again you can use something you’re familiar with, something in the room, or something from to choose your item to critique.

This time, I want you to focus on the concept of Contrast. Find logos that do a good job of using contrasting colours, sizes, lines, etc, and ones that don’t.

Again, please write in good SENTENCES (note the “s” on the end! More than one!) Again, please explain yourself well (what’s effective about the logo’s contrast? What isn’t?)


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