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  • In 1997, Google introduced their first logo and it looked like this. Yikes.

  • But after a few redesigns at the turn of the century, they landed on this 3D logo.

  • 3D logos were all the rage in the early 2000s.

  • But fast forward 10 years, and logos started to look like this.

  • Everybody was changing to 2D design, and before we knew it, 3D logos were a thing of the past.

  • But, did you ever wonder why we had the sudden change to flat design?

  • When you're searching the Internet today, you'll scroll past a lot of the same logos over and over again.

  • Head to Google and you see this guy. Open Instagram and you have to click this. YouTube, Netflix.

  • The thing these logos all have in common? They're all 2D.

  • In the mid 1900s, the logos were for the most part all flat design.

  • They were simple, clean, and 2D.

  • Rather than just trying to get the names out there, companies realized how impactful symbols were.

  • They started to put a lot more thought into the design process.

  • With the 1970s came CGI, and from there, logo started to come to life.

  • But the real change came at the turn of the century.

  • Adobe developed InDesign and Photoshop, and digital graphic design tools were at everybody's fingertips.

  • Logos were going 3D.

  • In the early days of the worldwide web, people started to use the Internet for every little thing.

  • And designers wanted to help people easily navigate these new devices.

  • They used what's called Skeuomorphism, which when we're talking about user interface design, means making digital features resemble real life objects.

  • The Save icon is skeuomorphic.

  • But after we stopped using the floppy disk in real life, it became less so.

  • People wanted technology, specifically touch screen technology to be intuitive and easy to use, and dragging a file to the trashcan on your screen felt instinctive.

  • Skeuomorphism was brought to life by using gradients, drop shadows, and fake textures to mimic depth.

  • The iPhone and iTouch were the first big time Capacitive Touch Screens.

  • They had no buttons and no feedback, unlike the resistive touch screens you use at grocery stores or ATMs.

  • The 3D designs combined with vibrations and clicking sounds made users feel like they were pressing real buttons.

  • 3D logo designs were vital to make people feel comfortable in the new developing age.

  • As the world got more comfortable using these technologies, skeuomorphism and 3D design became less important, and designers started to shift back towards 2D.

  • Critics of skeuomorphism argued that it was cluttered and harder to use because of the excessive gradients, beveled edges, and reflections.

  • Flat design conserved space in a limited user interface, and provided a cleaner feel.

  • Skeuomorphism can also constrain design.

  • When you go flat, you are no longer tied to the physical world, and ideas and interfaces can take on a more abstract form.

  • Take the hamburger menu scene a lot in flat design.

  • It is the opposite of skeuomorphism because there are no hamburger menus in real life.

  • But the menu design was sleeker and incredibly easy to use while saving space on the screen.

  • People were teetering between flat and skeuomorphic designs for a little bit before the world changed overnight. Literally.

  • On September 18th, 2013, Apples iOS updated overnight to iOS 7, and we woke up to a flat world.

  • At first, people were not happy with the new operating system.

  • They didn't know what was clickable and what wasn't, and more than anything, who likes change?

  • The glossy textures from the operating systems before it were gone.

  • All the apps had 2D designed icons.

  • That meant logos needed to switch to 2D to keep up with the times.

  • And logos everywhere started to change from 3D to flat design over the next few years.

  • Not only was 2D perceived to be easier for users, but it was also a lot easier on the designers too.

  • They can create logos that are high quality but required less time to make, and a simple vector design can be expanded and shrunk for any device or medium easier than 3D logos ever could be.

  • Today, almost everything we see around the Internet has a flat design.

  • Like all branches of design, logos are cyclical.

  • 2D was in, then it was out, and now it's in again.

  • But don't count skeuomorphism out just yet.

  • With the rise of augmented and virtual reality, skeuomorphism has to stay alive so that we can touch and feel digital objects in a very real way.

  • What will these logos look like in the future?

  • It's hard to tell, but for now, I'm just hoping I don't wake up with a whole new interface on my phone.

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In 1997, Google introduced their first logo and it looked like this. Yikes.

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Why 3D Logos Fell Out of Favor Overnight - Cheddar Explains

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    Jessieeee posted on 2021/11/06
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