Graphic Design Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for Graphic Design professionals, students, and enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am a software engineer attempting the impossible: to codify logotype creation.

I want to learn all the rules and principles for logotype design and don't want to rely on blogspam. I'm looking for timeless, pre-internet information.

What are the definitive books and courses that career logo designers have read and taken?

share|improve this question
Hi Vidbot! Welcome to GD. This is a great question, let's see what people recommend. – Yisela Feb 25 '13 at 4:40
I understand it is the moderator's job to clarify things, but my original question was "What are the definitive books or courses for the creation of a logotype?" I am not looking for merely "good" books or courses. I am looking for the books and courses that career graphic designers have read or taken that helped shaped them into the professionals they became. Please pardon my clarification. I do not mean to appear like a message board troll. – Vidbot Feb 25 '13 at 5:31
I just wanted to limit the scope a little. "The definitive" book would sound more like a suggestion question. You can edit the question back (just click on Edit). – Yisela Feb 25 '13 at 7:01
It's not pre-internet and it's not 'definitive rules', but the most useful book on logo design principles I've seen is Really Good Logos Explained. It's great because it doesn't try to invent definitive rules for something which is fundamentally case-by-case - instead, it embraces this case-by-case nature by structuring itself around real straight-to-the-point no-nonsense critiques of real logos for real clients, with short profiles of the client giving crucial context. – user568458 Feb 25 '13 at 22:38

I would have to recommend Doyald Young's books. If you don't know who he is, you can check out a short documentary of him and his work:

share|improve this answer
Great video. This is exactly the kind of experience I was looking for, although I hoped to get more "rules" out of it. A couple of good nuggets in there though: #1 The logotype must be legible. #2 The logotype must be unique. His books also lead me to additional resources. Thank you. – Vidbot Mar 7 '13 at 4:00

Lettering for Advertisements by Mortimer Leech

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.