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The Psychology of Shapes in Logo Design

The Psychology of Shapes in Logo Design

From abstract shapes to distinguished symbols, the visual elements used in logo design can convey a powerful message about your company. But did you know that particular shapes and lines can have hidden psychological implications? 

Understanding the meaning behind each shape can help ensure that your logo accurately conveys the right message about your brand. These fundamental concepts of psychology and how they translate into symbols are what we'll be exploring in this blog post today. Therefore, without further ado, here is what you need to know about the psychology of shapes in logo design.

Introducing the Psychology of Shapes in Logo Design

Psychology Of Shapes In Design

Most people don't think much about logo design, nor do they understand how much goes into creating a logo or what effect it can have on customers. Logo design is an area of expertise for many graphic designers. It requires a balance of creativity, technical knowledge, and an understanding of the psychology behind shapes to make a successful logo that communicates the brand identity.

You can see this psychological aspect in everything, from the logo's shape to colour choices. That is why it's so important to consider these aspects carefully.

By delving into shapes and their psychology in logo design, we can gain greater insight into why some logos stand out more than others. Understanding the significance behind specific shapes and placing them thoughtfully within a design allows you to combine all our elements to create powerful, meaningful logos that accurately represent each unique brand.

Understanding Basic Shapes and Their Meanings

When discussing the psychology of shapes in logo design, we first mention that shapes can influence logo design. They communicate ideas and feelings to potential customers. Understanding the basics of shapes is essential to creating logos that successfully achieve their purpose. 

There are three primary shapes: squares, circles, and triangles. Squares convey structure and stability, circles represent harmony and unity, while triangles suggest strength and direction. Each shape can be further broken down into more complex geometry, such as rectangles or pentagons, each communicating its underlying meaning.

By combining multiple geometric forms into one logo design โ€“ including colours and gradients โ€“ designers create unique symbols that reflect the identity of a business or organisation. With that in mind, let's go a bit more in-depth about the three main shapes of logos:

Circles

Circle Logo Shapes

Circles are popular shapes for logo design as they offer a sense of wholeness and harmony. They represent symbols of community, unity, protection, and timelessness. Unsurprisingly, many iconic logos, like the Nike swoosh, use circles as a base.

In terms of colour psychology, circular shapes often evoke feelings of consolation and trust, which makes them ideal for putting forth an impression of stability and reliability. That is probably why so many businesses use it across industries such as healthcare, wellness tours, and even aerospace engineering. As long as you adhere to logo design principles, you can't go wrong with using circles.

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Squares

Squares Logo Design

Squares elicit an emotional response stemming from their angular lines and strong structure. Their geometrical design creates a feeling of stability and a sense of trustworthiness. That makes them an ideal logo shape for emblems or monograms.

In addition to representing honesty, square shapes can bring safety, reliability, and balance to the mind. That being said, because squares are so precise, they imply that the company or product they represent with the logo is dependable and solid.

They also often subtly suggest sophistication and strength. Whether a brand opts for traditional symbolism or abstract designs, incorporating squares into logos often results in an image of reliability, stability, structure, and equilibrium.

Triangles

Famous Triangle Logos
Source: Fabrik Brands

Regarding the psychology of shapes in logo design, triangles are one of the most recognisable geometric shapes. They have a powerful psychological effect on people. They can represent direction, ambition, risk-taking, growth, and stability.

Depending on the triangle's orientation, they can have other meanings, such as masculinity or femininity. With careful consideration of colour and curvature, you can use these triangles to give any logo design an overall feeling of strength or dynamism.

A great way to use triangles is to incorporate them into a more significant symbol to create balance and emphasise one part of the logo.

Combining Shapes and Creating New Messages

Each of the shapes we have mentioned can have specific effects on people. However, strategically combining them allows you to create impressions and feelings that each form could not make independently. If you use shapes strategically, you can convey messages that are even more powerful and meaningful.

By combining two or more shapes in a logo, designers can create emotions and ideas beyond what could be achieved by a single shape alone. That is something businesses should take advantage of when designing their logos. For example, the Twitter logo: the combination of the bird silhouette and the blue and white background created an uplifting feeling that perfectly captures the nature of their service. 

Furthermore, combining shapes can enable businesses to include multiple meanings concerning one another in one design. That is an effective way to capture your brand's values in one graphic piece. Combining shapes is aesthetically pleasing and can quickly create a detailed mental picture of your brand's message, vision, and mission.

Importance of Colour

Brand Colour Psychology The Art Of Choosing Brand Colours

Good logo design is a crucial element for any successful business. Your company's logo should be an extension of its brand identity, easily recognisable and relatable to the values of your business. Colour is just as crucial in building that recognition among consumers as shapes do; colours set the tone for a brand and elicit strong emotions from potential customers. 

How Colour Affects Human Psychology

Believe it or not, colours play a big role in how we perceive logos and brands. That means that they can have a lasting impression on our behaviour. In truth, many companies are leveraging the psychological effects of colour, not just in logo design but in web design. For instance, shades and hues give us varying emotional and psychological responses.

From feelings of trustworthiness to stimulation, whether in the form of a logo or other graphical elements. For example, blue generally evokes feelings of peace and loyalty, green often carries connotations of nature and growth, while red is often associated with passion and courage. It's important to consider how colour can affect your audience when designing logos, as it can speak volumes even without words.

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Colours and Their Meanings

Map Of Colour Psychology

Colour is influential in conveying emotion and meaning to viewers, making it an essential element for logo design. Different colours evoke distinct reactions and feelings in people, such as joy, nostalgia, and tranquillity. For instance, yellow can suggest optimism, while blue can denote trustworthiness. Meanwhile, red may convey passion or excitement, while green encourages the viewer to take action.

When creating a logo, you should carefully consider your chosen colours because they will impact how viewers interact. Deciding which colours suit your design is often best done after researching the psychology of colour and understanding its effects on modern consumers. That said, here is a more in-depth look at how some colours can affect logo design:

Yellow

Yellow is often associated with happiness, optimism, and warmth. It can be a practical colour choice for brands that want to convey a sense of friendliness and approachability. However, overuse of yellow can make a logo appear juvenile or unprofessional, so it should be used carefully and in moderation.

Blue

Blue is standard in corporate logos because it conveys a sense of professionalism, trustworthiness, and reliability. It can also suggest calmness and stability. Blue is a versatile colour that companies use in many different industries, but its association with conservative values may make it less suitable for more creative or unconventional brands.

Red

Red is a bold, energetic colour that conveys passion, excitement, and urgency. It is often used in logos for brands that want to make a strong statement or elicit a visceral response from their audience. However, overuse of red can also make a logo appear aggressive or overwhelming.

Green

Green is associated with growth, renewal, and environmentalism. It is a popular choice for brands that want to convey a sense of sustainability, health, and well-being. Green can also suggest wealth and financial success, making it a suitable colour for brands in the finance and investment industries.

How To Use Colours To Create a Powerful Message in Your Logo Design

Beyond the apparent use of shapes, colours can create an emotional connection with customers. They can convey values and bring personality to your business. Bright primary colours like red, blue, and yellow make logos more vibrant and exciting. Softer hues such as pink and green give off more calming vibes.

Additionally, using several shades of the same colour can create a gradient effect. That can make your logo stand out from others. By leveraging the symbolic meaning behind specific colours and understanding the moods they generate, you can create a great logo design that will serve as a meaningful reflection of your company or organisation.

What Branding Experts Have To Say About Shape Psychology

Shapes In Logos
Source: Medium

Branding experts understand that the shapes of logo designs often carry subconscious meaning. As we've mentioned, a circular shape conveys a feeling of community and safety, while an angular shape can be seen as demanding attention while inspiring trustworthiness. Similarly, a soft-edged rectangle conveys balance and stability, while sharper edges show strength and reliability.

Brands need to use shape psychology wisely when designing logos. People tend to respond strongly to shapes without consciously realising why. Specific geometric shapes can evoke feelings that can easily change or strengthen the perception of a brand.

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Therefore, choosing the right ones for a particular brand identity is essential. Understanding these nuances is necessary to create an iconic logo and ensure the company stands out to its customers.

Considerations When Selecting a Shape for Your Logo Design

Knowing how different shapes affect people is insufficient for creating an effective logo. You must also be mindful of how the logo will resonate with your customers. If you do this, it will be easier to determine if the logo is effective. 

Consider characteristics such as form, orientation, and complexity – among other factors – that can help you choose a shape to represent your company or product best. Remember, logos with soft, round curves often communicate friendliness and trustworthiness, whereas sharp angles tend to lend credibility and strength.

Whatever shape you choose should ultimately align with your branding strategy; stick with it to reflect a professional image that customers can remember and associate with your company.

Conclusion

Understanding the psychology of shapes in logo design is an invaluable tool when creating or refreshing a company's logo. Consider all the factors that go into a design. Each element works together to send a message and make an impression.

Ultimately, it's essential to understand how basic shapes can be used alone or combined to create meaning behind your logo. Furthermore, you need to use your colours with balanced, as they can affect how customers feel about your business. Lastly, pay attention to what branding experts are saying about shape psychology. They can assist you in making better decisions for your logo representation.

Remember that even the simplest shapes can leave a lasting statement, so choose wisely!

Author Bio: David Kim is a branding expert with a strong understanding of logo design. He has over five years of experience helping businesses create effective brand identities and communicate their unique message to their target audience.

Photo of author

Stuart Crawford

Stuart Crawford is an award-winning creative director and brand strategist with over 15 years of experience building memorable and influential brands. As Creative Director at Inkbot Design, a leading branding agency, Stuart oversees all creative projects and ensures each client receives a customised brand strategy and visual identity.

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