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Amalgamated Meeotch

"Amalgamated Meeotch, Arts & Sciences LLC" is the purposely grandiose name for my one-person corp.  I use it basically as a legal shell for billing computer (programming, visual effects) and artistic (sculpture) services to clients.  The idea was that it should sound like a monstrous industrial combine from a bygone era, like International Harvester or Standard Oil.

For the logo, I wanted to meet several constraints:

  1. Foremost, to preserve the feeling of a lumbering giant.  Maybe even slightly sinister - or at least a company so large that it could cause significant damage (environmental / financial / etc.) without meaning to or even noticing.
  2. The logo should be usable as letterhead, but also be suitable for a welded steel sign (I plan to fabricate one for my office).  So it should be relatively simple, and probably needs to be mostly about the font.
  3. It should not look like a modern tongue-in-cheek homage to an early 20th Century corporate logo... Instead, when painted on the side of my office building in Brooklyn, it should look like it might have actually been there since the 40s.

These are my initial attempts.  (Click for larger images.)

The primary font for this one I found on the Letterhead site which is based on the work of Alf Becker, who was apparently a famous sign painter back in the 40s and 50s.  It immediately reminded me of the huge block letters used to paint my dad's business name on the side of his warehouse back when I was a kid.  I felt that it would look great on the side of a building in faded paint.  I had a really hard time finding a secondary font to go with it, though.  Everything I tried seemed to pull the eye away due to the contrast with the bold main font.  I ended up with a simple sans serif, and used italics both to help it balance and to indicate an antiquated feeling of a company that wanted to give the impression that it was "on the move".

This is another similar Letterhead font called "Big Dog" that looks really old school in its "prismatic" (3D) version:  http://www.letterheadfonts.com/fonts/alpha/B.php  The squashed globe graphic also gives an old-timey feel, though I sort of feel like it's more 60s than 40s or 50s.  (Note that neither this one nor the previous one are intentionally textured.  It's just sloppy photoshop work by me.  However, it does give an interesting indication of how it might look on the outside of a weatherbeaten old building.)

This version is probably my least favorite, and mostly demonstrates that the more complex the graphic becomes, the more modern (and therefore less on-target) it looks.

This is an FTC font called Amcap Eternal.  It's definitely got a sort of sci-fi edge to it - but it's still an old-school sci-fi...  like the original Stark Trek, or maybe something from a pulp novel.  The atom graphic works pretty well with this vibe.  This wasn't the look I was originally going for, and I kind of stumbled on it by accident, but I felt that it worked so well that I should include it.  The secondary font is ITC Newtext.

This last one is just demonstrating that some of the graphics will work with different fonts.  The atom graphic in particular, seemed to work with everything.

I feel like I addressed all three of my goals to some extent...  Though I don't feel like I've quite nailed it yet.  Some issues:

  1. Slightly worried that the globe reads like a basketball, or that the atom reads like a flower.  I'd be interested to hear people's first immediate impressions.
  2. Still torn between the nostalgia of the big block font (personal nostalgia, for memories of my dad's warehouse) and the harmony that the sci-fi version has.
  3. Not entirely satisfied with the secondary font on the non-sci-fi versions.  It somehow seems too modern in comparison with the old-school block fonts.
  4. I'd like to try a "monogram" version too at some point, for use in places where the full logo wouldn't fit.  (http://letterheadfonts.com/fonts/monogramdiamond.php)  So it would be a bonus if the primary logo font works well distorted.

Here they are all together.  It's interesting how different they look juxtaposed.  Something that was your favorite when seen alone might not be when seen with all the others.  (Of course, it's only important that it looks good on its own!)

PART II:  MONOGRAM

I'm pretty sure I'm using the word "monogram" wrong here, but what I mean is, a small, graphic version of the above with just the company initials, for use where the full logo wouldn't be appropriate.

So I started off with the atom graphic, and Big Dog, Becker, and Amcap Eternal from above.  The drop shadow on Becker looks a little strange.  But notice that Big Dog is a pretty similar font - so I could easily use Becker for the full logo, and Big Dog for the monogram.  I'm getting the same feeling I got above from these:  Big Dog feels more "old-school" (40s/50s), and Amcap seems more 60s.  The difference isn't as pronounced as with the full logo, though.

Now the gear.  It definitely has a strong, industrial feel to it...  Though it's slightly less exciting than the atom.  Maybe I should look for a more interesting gear graphic.

The globe adds a multi-national conglomerate feeling.  But overall I don't think I like it as much as the other two.

There is something that's growing on me abou the squashed globe.  Two cons:  1) Maybe too much like the Pan Am airline logo?  (Not the globe itself, per se - but combined with the "AM".)  2) Possibly difficult to read, with all the white lines.

An attempt at improving legibility.

I've got to say, at this point I'm having a hard time deciding.  I think the atom, gear, and squashed globe all work pretty well as a monogram - which makes it even harder to decide which full logo to go with, since they come as a set.

I like that the atom references "Arts & Sciences", which is not true of the globe.  The gear definitely feels the most powerful.  And the globe adds that multi-national "Vampire Squid" sense.  I think I'm going to have to sleep on it.

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