News & Notes

Logo Design Love ❤ Mr. Product

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David Airey introduces Mr. Product to his many fans and touches on Madison Avenue’s penchant for “retro-branding.”

David has been successfully self-employed as a graphic designer since 2005. Specializing in the design of brand identities, he works with clients of all sizes from his studio in Northern Ireland. He is the author and editor of three of the most popular design blogs on the Internet: davidairey.com, logodesignlove.com, and identitydesigned.com, with the sites attracting more than 1,000,000 page views every month. David is also the author of LogoDesignLove, the bestselling book about logo and branding design. LogoDesignLove is available on Amazon.

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How Many Martin Oil Company Logos and NINA’s Can You Find?

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Growing up in NYC the Sunday Entertainment section of the New York Times would have a weekly illustration by Al Hirschfeld. Hirschfeld is known for hiding his daughter’s name Nina in most of the caricatures he produced after her birth. The name would appear in a sleeve, in a hairdo, or somewhere in the background. Hirschfeld engaged in this “harmless insanity,” as he called it, of hiding her name NINA at least once in each of his drawings. The number of NINA’s concealed is shown by a numeral to the right of his signature. There are three in the Man of La Mancha.

Many brand mascots have their product’s name emblazoned across their chest. However, some are anthropomorphized where the product becomes the torso of the character. The Martin Oil Company’s serviceman is unique in that he is composed of his company’s logo several times over. It’s in the shape of his serviceman’s cap. How many can you find?

A Mid-Summer Treat

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Found this summer at a flea market outside of San Francisco. Cool images of other not-so-famous but happy-faced brand mascots can be seen in Mr. Product: The Graphic Art of Advertising’s Magnificent Mascots 1960-1985.