The Branded Spectrum

23 Sep

The Branded Spectrum: Green

By Jason Allen

One colour for logos that's seen a huge resurgence in the last two decades is green. It's a colour that's a bit more specific in regards to what it can convey, with attributes like health, freshness, renewal and hope. Physiologically, it makes sense; to our atavistic ancestors, seeing green in the wilderness signified the presence of water to drink and life (food) nearby. Still in our modern day, green is the easiest colour for the human eye to process.

The first category that comes to mind when you think of green logos is, unsurprisingly, the environment. In the 20-odd years of intense awareness of how we're slowly destroying the planet, the colour green has blossomed into an every day thought. Consumer choices we make are more environmentally conscious now than they were decades ago, and the very term "going green" has become part of our vernacular. In this way, a green logo helps to convey a company's forethought and conscience in this area.

Look at this image below, of dozens of green logos. Most (not all) are for environmental initiatives and many even contain leaves and nature motifs. Even the word 'green' is featured prominently again and again to reinforce to the viewer what these initiatives do. No other colour does this so overtly in logos.


How many green brands can you think of?


A special note should be made about the logo for BP Oil. The original BP logo was a green and yellow shield, so the colours it uses now are a heritage holdover from years past. It's quite a bold move however, for an oil company of today to use green and yellow in their identity, and even bolder because of the image itself. If we didn't know, we might think BP was a producer of environmentally conscious vegetable-based fuels. Unfortunately, thanks to the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico a few years ago, we are reminded otherwise.



Green doesn't just convey health for our planet; it does the same for our own bodies. Green logos (and green packaging) tell us the product we're about to buy is good for us, (even when it's not). Grocery stores, healthcare products, fruit and vegetable producers, and agricultural companies are common users of the colour green to denote freshness and health.




Remember the experiment we tried last time with black? Try the same with green. Go through your home and pull out the products that have green packaging. As one of the more specific colours, you'll find few surprises that aren't health, freshness, or environment-related.

Most colours have some association to trend in the marketplace, and I suppose green isn't really an exception there. What's interesting is that the trend to which green is tied, likely isn't a trend at all. We will most likely be making environmentally conscious decisions for the rest of our lives. What remains to be seen however, is if green continues to be the standard bearer for the movement, or if another colour moves in as we experience green fatigue. Fresh time will tell.

Other green logos include: Android, Land Rover, Heineken, Starbucks, Acer, Doublemint, Lacoste, Sony Playstation, John Deere, 7up, Roots, Makita, Irish Spring, Humana, and H&R Block.


To read more about green, check out 'All about green' 

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Color Objects encourages you to get a better eye and appreciation for colors and characters. To get a special selection of pics and info for you, we find designers and artists that make colorful work from all over the world. There's a lot of character in colors, and having a closer look will change your view of the world and people around you. So we share a host of pics and info from design, art, cultures and the natural world. All about colors.

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