The main visual protagonist of corporate design is the logo or the logotype. This is a sign or symbolic depiction reduced to essentials, which is tied to a certain identity. For the effectiveness of an image or word and image brand, its concision and semiotic accuracy are of decisive importance. A comprehensive CD programme includes further elements such as typography, colours, palette of substrates, design grid, editorial and image concept as the formal “rules of the game”. A visual appearance first achieves an effect that creates identity and shapes an image through the creative interpretation and consistent application.
We are not aware of it but in fact we constantly bathe in a sea of the meanings of images and things. They are present in signs, forms, sounds, spaces, and they influence our perception. These are the things graphic designers deal with in their profession. Generally, in one’s work one attempts to cultivate the beautiful or at least the interesting. What is referred to here is not kitsch or visual frenzy but far more the delicate tones of gradually increasing, emphasising something: swelling, brilliance and contrasts, the repetition of constructive and symbolic forms – for instance the wings in many symbols or the central axis as a design principle (national coats-of-arms, McDonald’s logo, images of angels…). The right scale is rarely found. Exaggerations are counter-productive. The following thought has been handed down to us from the ancient Greek thinker Longinus: “…in general bombast seems to be one of the failings that it is hardest to avoid. For, out of fear of being described as feeble or anaemic, all who strive for greatness tend somehow or other to make this mistake.”