Job:01536 Title: Logolounge Master Library Vol 1 (Rockport)
012-029 01536 C2.indd 12012-029 01536 C2.indd 12 9/3/09 9:43:34 AM9/3/09 9:43:34 AM
Job:01536 Title: Logolounge Master Library Vol 1 (Rockport)
Joe Duffy is principal and chairman of Duffy
& Partners and is a leading creative director in the
elds of branding and design. His fi rm’s clients
include market leaders such as Coca-Cola, Sony,
Jack in the Box, and Wolfgang Puck, to name a
few. His work is regularly featured in leading
marketing and design publications and exhibited
around the world.
Why have crests and initials remained so
popular with designers and consumers over
so many years?
It’s primarily because they have meaning and
because they are personal. They typically refer
to a family or person or part of history. They can
relate to the characteristics of a person or
company and what makes them unique. Initials
and crests represent people, primarily. I think that
is why they are looked upon with some degree of
meaningful nostalgia.
For example, I’m Irish. My family is from County
Galway in Ireland. The “Duffy” name has a crest
that goes back hundreds of years. I don’t like
the design of it, but I do like its signi cance. It
represents the generations of Duffys who came
before me.
Now, if it was also good design, you would then
have both parts of the equation needed for real
success: the meaningful part and the artistic part.
Those crests or ligatures that are most success-
ful achieve equity through both meaning and
A long time ago, someone unknowingly
created the fi rst crest or initial logo. When
do you think it all started?
Interestingly in times like these—of economic
and cultural uncertainty—crests and monograms
deliver a sense of stability. They suggest that
something has been around, or that it’s legacy
minded and built to thrive over time. Perhaps the
rst crest dates back to a time when people were
looking for strength.
Commercially, it probably goes back to the rst
packages that were designed. That person had a
desire to create iconography that was pleasing to
the eye and that had some meaning that could
be explained or expanded about a brand or
company, something that would bring meaning to
the company’s audience. It probably goes back
to the beginning of packaged goods.
What are the visual mechanics that make a
crest work as a logo?
It helps the brain in terms of simple de nition
by creating a focal point. Having some framing
device for the most meaningful parts of a brand
language. That, plus placement on a package
or a page, is what people will go to rst when
making a purchase decision.
Right now, I’m looking at a collage that one of our
designers created during the research phase of a
Joe Duffy,
Duffy & Partners
Signifi cant and
Those that are most
successful achieve
equity through both
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