Designer Showcase: Paul Rand (1914–1996)

designer showcase logo design

Paul Rand is arguably the most famous designer in the last century. He contributed designs and insight into the design industry that revolutionized and changed the design industry forever. Paul Ran would have been 100 years old on August 15th. In celebration of his birthday (albeit a little late), I thought that I would take a minute today to showcase some of his talents and contributions. 

Paul Rand is indisputably most famous for his contributions to corporate identities. He is the graphic designer that was instrumental in convincing the world that design is an effective advertising tool and that every corporation needs a corporate identity. He taught the world how important visual cues can be and how the most effective logos do not need to be fancy or over-elaborate. Simplicity and restraint were two of his mantras. Paul Rand was instrumental in designing some of the world’s most famous logos that he designed- IBM, ABC, Westinghouse, UPS and Steve Job’s NeXT – most of which are still in use today. 

Here are some of Paul Rand’s most famous logo designs:

IBM (1956)

Paul Rand created the IBM logo with a slab-serif typeface and horizontal stripes to unify the letters. Over the years, he also designed IBM’s packaging, marketing materials, and annual reports.

Westinghouse (1959)

Paul Rand modernized the old Westinghouse logo into what the company still uses today. It is a logo design that was based on the interlinked points of a circuit board.

Yale University Press (1985)

In 1985, Paul Rand was asked to redesign the logo for Yale’s publishing house. He created a simple logo that is memorable and that has stood the test of time. 

ABC (1961)

This logo embodies Paul Rand’s logo design ideal of the importance of simplicity. The logo design that he created for ABC was merely a simple black circle with the company’s name. 

UPS (1961)

Paul Rand redesigned the UPS logo with his simple, stylish and powerful design. He simplified their existing logo and he added  “a bow-tied package above the familiar shield to express the mission of the company”. This logo by Paul Rand was in use for over 40 years and it wasn’t until 2003 that it was finally adapted into the present-day UPS logo.

Older Post Newer Post