Hidden Messages in 26 Famous Logos

Image Source: SIphotography/iStock.com

Ever come across a logo that you have seen a million times, but one day you notice a small detail that blows you away? If you haven’t, the following 26 famous logos will be quite interesting. Using different tactics you can add more meanings in a logo. These logos are well known, so you may have seen them, but today we’ll focus on the hidden messages within each of them.

1. FedEx

fedex logo

This logo has been around for over a decade and I am very familiar with it as well as the company’s services. However, I never saw the hidden arrow within the logo. Take a close look between the E and X. See it? This arrow (in the negative space) represents precision, speed and accuracy.

2. Toblerone

Toblerone logo design

Do you know where Toblerone chocolate is created? The company is located in Bern, Switzerland which is also known as the City of Bears. The mountain in the Toblerone logo embodies the City of Bears by incorporating a bear in it. Have you found the bear?

3. NBC

nbc logo

Ever notice the peacock image in the NBC logo? The most recent logo makes it hard to spot, in older versions the peacock was more visible. The peacock faces towards the right, symbolizing the company’s motto to look forward.

4. Baskin Robbins

Baskin Robins logo

Their slogan, 31 Flavors of Fun, made them a commercial success, as did their logo. The number 31 is significant because Baskin Robins carries 31 flavors of ice cream. If you look close, you can see the number 31 placed between the letters.

5. Goodwill

Goodwill logo

This one is easier to spot. The letter G in the logo is also a smiley face. It was the company’s way of showing a gesture of…should we say, goodwill?

6. Nike

nike logo design

Did you know Nike’s logo has a hidden message? Not many do! The famous swoosh used by the company represents one of the wings of ‘Nike,’ the Greek goddess of victory. Interesting, huh?

7. Hope for African Children Initiative

Hope for African children initiative logo

This logo looks like a map of Africa but after a closer look you will see two people (a child and an older person) facing each other.

8. Big Ten Conference

big ten logo

Currently there are 12 schools in the Big 10, but at one time there were 11. So, in the logo the company decided to include the number “11” in a subtle way. Since the growth of the Big Ten Conference, the company was not keen on change their cherished logo so the number 11 remains.

9. Pakuy

pakuy logo design

Pakuy is a packaging company with a logo that is simple and clever. The logo looks like the letter P, standing for the company name, while it also looks like an unfolding box. It’s a great way to represent the company and its services.

10. Hershey’s Kisses

hersheys kisses logo

I love this one because the symbolism is hard to find and many people often too busy devouring the chocolate, instead of noticing it. Before you dive into the bag, take a look between the letters K and I. You’ll be surprised to find a hidden Hershy’s kiss there!

11. Yoga Australia

yoga australia logo design

In this logo, you will notice that the image is of a woman in a yoga pose which also makes the shape of Australia. It’s hidden between her arm and leg.

12. Apple

Apple logo
Who isn’t familiar with this logo! It is the image of an apple that has been bitten. Simple and straight forward. But the symbolism people relate to this logo is perhaps not as simple. There are quite a few theories regarding the symbolism of the logo.

The current Apple logo is a modern and evolved version. The very first Apple logo had the image of Sir Issac Newton sitting under an apple tree while the second logo (rainbow Apple) was derived from Newton’s prism work. Some people like to believe that the logo indirectly symbolizes the forbidden fruit of Adam and Eve, depicting lust and knowledge. Well not literally perhaps, but Apple products are (sinfully) addictive hence the symbolism feels right, to me at least 😉 A few people even believe that the bite in the logo refers to the computing term 8 bytes or binary knowledge. Although designer, Rob Janoff disagrees with these theories.

So, what do you think? Which of these theories would you root for?

13. Sony Vaio

Sony Vaio logo

At first, I had no idea about the hidden meaning in this logo. The curvy V and A actually indicate an analog wave or a signal. The I and O represent the binary digits 1 and 0. Very unique, creative fitting for this type of company!

14. Milwaukee Brewers

Milwaukee Brewers logo

Are you a baseball fan? If so, then you may recognize this logo. The Milwaukee Brewers logo is shaped like a baseball glove holding a baseball. But look closely, do you see the B and M?

15. Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta Falcons logo design

Let’s talk sports again. The logo of the Atlanta Falcons is easily recognizable. The beak and claw of the falcon are reaching out; can you see what it creates? The letter F.

16. Amazon.com

amazon logo

Most people have used Amazon.com. The logo is very self-explanatory. The text spells out the company name, but the arrow under the A and Z is quite interesting. Its Amazon’s way of saying they carry everything from “A to Z.”

17. Sun Microsystems

Sun Microsystems logo

Before they got taken over by Oracle, this was their logo. The design is a very unique way of displaying the letters that spell out their name, S-U-N. No matter which way you are looking at the logo, you can read the word SUN. This was stunning work done by Vaughan Pratt.

18. Northwest Airlines

northwest airlines logo design

This is the older Northwest Airlines logo, but it deserves a mention. The letter N is visible can you see the W? And that’s not all. Look even closer, can you see the compass? Which direction is it pointing in?

19. LG

LG company logo design

A masterpiece of creativity, this logo depicts the letters L and G easily. The L and G seem to make a face, almost with a winking eye. But, if you take the design a bit further by tilting little to the right and align the L with the edges you’ll see a PacMan!

20. Washington State University

Washington State University logo

This is one of my favorite logos and my favorite school. WSU really did a great job with their logo, representing the university mascot and the 3 letters that define the university. Can you find the letters?

21. ED

ed logo design

The Italian electric company used went about their logo in a very unique way. An electric socket is used to represent the company and its services. The socket represents providing electricity, as well as forming the letters E and D.

22. Tour de France

tour de france logo

Tour de France is all about bicycling. Can you spot the cyclist in the logo?

23. Pittsburg Zoo

Pittsburg Zoo logo

Zoo logos tend to have a common theme, featured animals. The Pittsburg Zoo’s isn’t much different. If you look carefully at the white space under the tree, you can see a lion and gorilla. This is one of my favorite logos; its creativity never ceases to amaze me!

24. Mammoth

mammoth logo design

I’m a huge fan of the movie Ice-Age so when I saw this logo from the California based ski resort, it instantly made a connection. They created the letter M with a piece of animal imagery (Mammoth tusks-do you see them?), it’s really creative!

25. London Orchestra

london orchestra logo

There’s another beautifully concealed image here! The most amazing orchestra conductors have performed with the London Orchestra. Can you see the conductor in the logo? The L and O make up the arms of the conductor while the links between the two letters create the head.

26. Unilever

unilever logo design

I saved the most intricate for the last! The Unilever logo is composed of 26 different icons, each representing one of their products and services. An example of one would be a palm tree which represents nature and products that have coconuts, dates, palm oil etc. (Unilever logo explained)

Some logos are truly amazing and creative because of the innovation involved in their creation. You should get a creative logo that provides your company with a great branding option and tickle our imagination when we make the connection between the company and its brand.

Blog Update: 15 May 2015

*This post was originally written by Sana Khan.

Mehreen is a social media buff and design blogger, who keeps a keen eye on graphic design trends. She has a passion for experimenting with design ideas, and wouldn’t mind if it means going out of her way to find them in Timbuktu. Follow her on twitter for daily inspirations and findings.

3 thoughts on “Hidden Messages in 26 Famous Logos

  1. Awsome!! I like Pittsburg Zoo logo for a white space that form a gorilla and lion’s head.
    A tree which can be seen in the animals natural habitat. great work!!!

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