Fourth Annual Logo Design Award Winners

HOW’s Fourth Logo Design Awards spotlights the best logo designs entered into this annual design competition. From more than 1,000 entries, HOW’s logo design judge, Jim Krause, author of “The Logo Brainstorm Book,” whittled it down to the top 10 winning logo designs.

From there, the readers of were able to vote for their favorite, which is dubbed the Reader’s Choice Award Winner and also will be featured in the January 2013 issue of HOW magazine.

See all the winners below, including the Reader’s Choice Award Winner, for some of the best logos and get inspired as you create your logo designs.

EXCLUSIVE SALE: Save 10% off top logo design resources. Offer Valid through 03/01/13.

Reader’s Choice Award Winner: Studio 910 Logo

Firm: Michael Mann Design,  Myrtle Beach, SC;
Creative Team: Scott Mann, Alecia Lewis
Project Description: An experiential learning center for the visual arts.
Judge’s Comment: “This is an exquisite synthesis between letterforms and numerals. Typographically speaking, it doesn’t get much better than this.”

Studio 910 Logo
Until Lambs Become Lions

Design Firm: Wendy K Johnson Design, Orlando, FL;
Creative Team: Wendy K Johnson
Project Description: Until Lambs Become Lions is an up-and-coming band in the Orlando area. They needed a logo and brand that matched their music and their fans.
Judge’s Comment: “A lo-fi logo treatment that brilliantly expresses high-reaching conveyances of transformation.”

Until Lions become Lambs Logo
Snow Bash

Design Firm: Hub Strategy, San Francisco;
Creative Team: Jason Rothman, DJ O’Neil, Peter Judd
Project Description: SnowBash is a raucous event thrown at the foot of the Squaw Valley fueled by snow, beer and live music. We figured, who better to represent that sort of event than a hybrid abominable snowman/snowflake. So that’s what we did. The logo identified the event as something a bit different than the norm while appealing to the ski/board culture. The logo was used on swag like fleece jackets, snowboard stickers and in promotions online and around the mountain.
Judge’s Comment: Here’s a logo that almost looks as if it could have been created in Illustrator in under ten minutes, and so what if it was? The strangely endearing result is a slam dunk combination of impact, humor and twisted festivity.”

Snow Bash Event Logo

Design Firm: baselcreative, Rootstown, OH;
Creative Team: Paul Basel
Project Description: This is a logo for a firearms business called boomsticks. The client wanted a Western look with an outlaw feel. The Western look comes across with the resemblance of decaying print that was left exposed to the elements too long like a wanted poster. The outlaw feel is represented with the visual of the sawed-off shotgun.
Judge’s Comment: “Guns scare me. This logo scares me, but I also find its menacing simplicity visually thrilling.”

Boomsticks Firearms logo


Gun Shop Logo:Boomsticks

Design Firm: Loud Dog, San Francisco;
Creative Team: Josh Orum, Jodi Wing, Brian Kwa
Project Description: Chroma is enterprise software for the management of extremely large file systems used in the high-performance computing industry. Whamcloud, the company behind Chroma, uses the metaphorical ocean to represent a super flexible, scalable and wicked fast file system. This inspired the concept of a deep sea diver for the new logo. We added a few bubbles to make it clear that our character was underwater and put a flashlight in his hand so that he could “illuminate” the complex world of HPC (and part of the text in the logo). The diver’s scale in relation to the large word Chroma is an intentional juxtaposition of the metaphorical “system administrator” tasked with overseeing the vast storage environment.
Judge’s Comment: “An offbeat logo with deeper meaning. It may take viewers a moment to connect the deep sea diver’s flashlight with the swash of illumination within this logo’s type, but once the association is made, beneath-the-surface conveyances of exploration, depth and discovery begin arise from this well conceived and attractively composed signature.”

chroma tech company logo
chroma tech company logo on T-shirt
En Masse

Design Firm: Écorce Atelier Créatif, Montreal, Quebec;
Creative Team: Karl-Frédéric Anctil
Project Description: En Masse is a collective of artists with more than 30 different styles of artists who wanted to have an identity composed by black and white. Ecorce created a graphics system of typography and a circle mixed together. Then, the artists were invited to run free and appropriate the graphic system and make several versions that represent them.
Judge’s Comment: “What fun, and what an impressively creative solution to the challenge of coming up with a large set of varied logos that look good as a group — and as individual designs.”

En Masse Logo Design
Ladah Merah Logo

Design Firm: Halfnot indesign, Jakarta, Indonesia;
Creative Team: Jane Jahja, Putri Regina, Jacky Halim
Project Description: Lada Merah is a modern peranakan restaurant, located in Jakarta, Indonesia, and owned by three ladies with a passion for cooking. The idea was inspired by the strong decorative element from a peranakan house. The colorful tiles symbolize the variety of cuisine and spices used. Using pastel version of peranakan colors, we give a slight taste of the restaurant’s warm and soothing feeling that nods to home-cooking. And just like the tiles, the logo is flexible to follow the layout format.
Judge’s Comment: “This is a gorgeous design built from rearrangeable decorative tiles. If I saw this logo outside a restaurant, it would grab me by the eyeballs, pull me inside and sit me at a table with a napkin in my lap before I even had the time to ask what Peranakan cookery was or where it came from.”

Lada Merah Restaurant Logo
Lada Merah Restaurant Logo
Petri Dish Productions

Design Firm: AkinsParker, Newport Beach, CA;
Creative Team: Jeff Parker
Project Description: This is the identity for a young film production company called Petri Dish. The mark uses “p” and “d” letterforms to draw a petri dish and a film canister. The type treatment is derived from laboratory labels and scientific formula notation.
Judge’s Comment: “The clean and clear forms of a petri dish (built from the overlapping forms of a ‘p’ and a ‘d’) combined with this signature’s pseudo-scientific mono-spaced type, amount to an irresistible presentation filled with effective and well-targeted connotations.”

petri dish logo design
petri dish logo design
Rock Paper Pigeon

Design Firm: Operation Iggy Design, Somerville, MA;
Creative Team: Kerri Cordeiro
Project Description: This is a logo I created for my yet to be launched line of stationery. I have a soft spot for pigeons, especially the history of carrier and homing. An origami representation seemed like the most natural way to combine pigeons with my love of paper.
Judge’s Comments: “This is whimsical and charming to a degree that’s almost too good to be true. The clean and precise lines of this logo’s origami pigeon contrast beautifully with its informal, slightly skewed, and intentionally chunky lettering.”


stationery logo design
Smitten Logo

Design Firm: Hoppmann Creative, Charleston, SC;
Creative Team: Becky Hoppmann
Project Description: As a strictly digital magazine touted as “the look-book of wedding fancy,” I wanted the logo (therefore also its masthead) to reflect a more modern, fun and sassy look in comparison to the vast amount of traditional wedding magazines out there. Through its design and color choices, it sets the stage for the type of aesthetic quality the viewer can expect to see throughout the magazine itself.
Judge’s Comment: “Playful yet formal. Traditional yet hip. This design does a terrific job of finding the sweet spots between opposing objectives — and it does so with enviable grace and agility.”

Smitten Magazine logo

If logos are your business, don’t miss these  5 valuable design books for logo designers. For a limited time, save 10% on any of the below titles!

  1. “The Logo Brainstorm Book,” by Jim Krause.
  2. “Mastering Type,” by Denise Bosler.
  3. “Design DNA: Logos,” by Matthew Healey.
  4. “Archetypes in Branding: A Toolkit for Creatives and Strategists,” by Josh Chen.
  5. “Damn Good: Top Designers Discuss Their All-time Favorite Projects,” by Tim Lapetino and Jason Adams.


More Resources – Free Ebooks
8 Winning Examples of Brand Strategy in Packaging Design
7 Archetypes that Established Brand Identity