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Smashing Magazine Logo Contest


Few days ago we’ve re-aligned the Smashing Magazine web-site, changed the theme and – most importantly – re-designed the navigation menu. So far so good. However, in the end we’ve found ourselves in a dilemma – Smashing Magazine doesn’t have a proper logo, which would mark our identity and relate to the subjects we cover on our pages.

In fact, we need a unique, fresh and stylish logo. And since you determine the content of Smashing Magazine1, we’d like you to help us in creating it. So, basically, this is what this post is about.

Hereby we announce the Smashing Magazine Logo Contest for the most creative, clean and fresh logo for our web-site.

Update (14.03.2007): Link

You can submit 1-3 designs. You can also send us a watermarked version. But you can be sure that we won’t use any of your logos for our purposes without your permission.

Update (16.03.2007): Link

We’ve received 14 logos from Mexico, South Africa, Canada, USA, UK, Spain and Italy. We’re expecting your designs, too, you know ;).

Update (27.03.2007): Link

Four days to go. We have received 82 logos so far.

Here is the list of all 50 participants of the contest so far.

  • Andrew Butterworth
  • Kyle Mistry
  • Ruan Deyzel
  • Nelson Garcia
  • Salvo Nicolosi
  • Justin Gardner
  • Samuel Mularczyk
  • Michael Bleigh
  • Ben Clinch
  • Aloke Pillai
  • Mike Anderson
  • Hugo Beltran
  • Mike O.
  • Konstantin Lang
  • Jesus Riera
  • Elena Gafita
  • Lane Allen
  • Hulub “Teddyx” Teodor
  • Ryan Brennan
  • igor
  • Roland Hidvegi
  • Kantor Andrei
  • Precup Alexandru
  • Brian Mayzure
  • Alec Julien
  • Gabriel Agu
  • Joanna Betlej
  • Lance Waldrop
  • Florin Hatmanu
  • Knol Aust
  • Suszter Viktor
  • Robert Karpati
  • Glen Ainscow
  • phunk83
  • Francesco Importa
  • Roberto Cecchi
  • Myriam Balian
  • Bruno Rosa
  • Daniel Marina
  • Djurdjica Selec
  • Roland Liechti
  • Marcel Villerius
  • Matt Harzewski
  • Victor Fedyuk
  • Stefan Asemonta
  • Kyle Easter
  • Dodjie Buncab

Update (29.03.2007): Link

22 more participants, 37 more logos. 2 days to go.

New participants:

  • Mike Secreto
  • Kashif Rahman
  • Josue Sierra
  • Hulub Teodor
  • Goce Mitevski (monsteer)
  • Hardi P
  • Denis Perekhrest
  • Kaitlyn Allen
  • Jeremy (jrmy0641)
  • Allan Garcia
  • mat taylor
  • Mostaque Ahammed
  • Mihai Florea
  • Christine Noonan
  • Oli Kooc Media
  • Istvan Farkas
  • sadia belanger
  • Rico Desjardins
  • Okuonghae maxim / maxximovitch
  • Foppe Hemminga
  • Matthew Ravenhall
  • Jason Anonuevo

Update (01.04.2007): Link

No more entries are accepted. We have received 192 logos from 105 participants worldwide.

Thanks for your time, your inspiration, your dedication. We appreciate it.

Here is the list of new participants (30.03 – 31.03):

  • Anna Bergström
  • Virus Minus
  • Samuel Le Morvan
  • Katie Mathieson
  • Kaela Stanley
  • Marshall McDonald
  • hanifan verdi
  • Dave Howarth
  • Mario Carcaterra
  • k shea
  • Sylvain Plaideux
  • Achmad Bisri
  • Vladislav Makevich
  • Dragos
  • Dan Loffler
  • Frank Muller
  • Reynante “Reynan” Alibuyog
  • Ryan Helsing
  • Alexandra Polido
  • Alex Molchan
  • sagara sagara
  • Tim Luckey
  • Manolis Gerasidis
  • Luis Simoes
  • Muhammad Najib Bin Abdul Rahim
  • Manolis Gerasidis
  • li song
  • Xiao Peng
  • Yuan Giersdorf
  • Marcos Guiponi
  • Melissa Scroggins
  • Diana Ilithya
  • adanVecindad

Over the next few days we’ll present most interesting works and announce the winner.

What about a reward? Link

The winner gets the SimpleTech SimpleDrive External. It’s a stylish, quick external hard drive with 250 GB capacity and Hi-Speed USB 2.0. Besides, winner’s name will appear in the footer of every Smashing Magazine’s web-page – as long as we use it, of course.

SimpleTech SimpleDrive External Hard Drive

Since we don’t know, which country the winner will come from, we might get in problem delivering the hard drive to some countries of the world. Don’t worry about it, we’ll find an appropriate solution.

What is required? Link

In order to participate, design

  • a distinctive Smashing Magazine logo for our header.
    Max. height: 65px.
    Max. size: 20 Kb.
    Format: .gif or .png.
  • a Favicon.
    Size: 16x16px or 32x32px.
    Format: .ico.

The logo has to be related to the topics we cover in Smashing Magazine. Take a look around2 and select themes you think are most appropriate.

You can use whatever color you’d like to use. Just to give you some idea about designs we might possibly prefer – you should probably take a closer look at some creative logos3 and remarkable favicons4 we’ve selected recently.

Send your designs via e-mail at office at smashingmagazine dot com with subject “Logo Contest”. Mention your name, your URL and the country you come from. If it’s possible send us also a brief description of your design and the theme you’ve selected. We’d like to know, which idea has been the driving force behind design. We’d like you to be creative. We’d like you to get really excited about it. At least as excited as we are.

May I participate? Link

Sure! If you’d like to.

Deadline? Link

We’ll consider all designs we receive until the 31st of March 2007. In the beginning of April we’ll present most interesting works and announce the winner.

Footnotes Link

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The Smashing team loves high-quality content and cares about the little details. Through our online articles, Smashing Books, eBooks as well as Smashing Conferences, we are committed to stimulating creativity and strengthening the web design community’s creative forces.

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  2. 2

    I like external Hard-Drives! I like making logos! I like winning things!

  3. 3
  4. 4

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 14, 2007 2:21 am

    Thanks, jwo: we respect your position.

  5. 5

    I just discovered this fantastic website…one word: Wow.

    Smashing Magazine’s da bomb. Amazing. Huge thumbs up guys.

  6. 6

    I’m with Jwo on this one; I came to post the same link. Logo competitions are ways of soliciting free work from designers without paying them. The assumption is that designers “love” working on logos so much, that they’ll do them for free.

    Submitting work to logo competitions is a way of telling the world that your field is so devalued that you’ll work for free. Would you ask ten doctors to all give you free check-ups because they love being doctors so much? Then, when it’s all over, you’ll tell one of them that they’re the best — instead of paying them all for their work?

    This isn’t a slam against Smashing Magazine, but towards design/logo competitions in general.

  7. 7

    I’m with Jwo on this one; I came to post the same link. Logo competitions are ways of soliciting free work from designers without paying them. The assumption is that designers “love” working on logos so much, that they’ll do them for free.

    Submitting work to logo competitions is a way of telling the world that your field is so devalued that you’ll work for free. Would you ask ten doctors to all give you free check-ups because they love being doctors so much? Then, when it’s all over, you’ll tell one of them that they’re the best — instead of paying them all for their work?

    This isn’t a slam against Smashing Magazine, but towards design/logo competitions in general.

  8. 8

    Hey Guys, Awesome idea. I just submited my entry, but your email system is rejecting ico files. Just thought everyone should be aware. I’ll re-send via a zip file.


  9. 9

    Is there a color (or a colorsheme) that you want to see in the logo?
    (Sorry for my bad English, I come from Holland)

  10. 10

    Sorry about the double-post, everybody!

  11. 11

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 14, 2007 6:00 am

    @bart: you are absolutely free in your decisions! Surprise us!

  12. 12

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 14, 2007 6:01 am

    @Josue Sierra: sorry, we didn’t get anything.

  13. 13

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 14, 2007 6:02 am

    @Chris: you have a point. However it’s not that we just ask our readers to create a logo for free. Everybody is free to decide whether he/she wants to participate or not.

  14. 14

    I am in! i will be sending the logo.

  15. 15

    Now, would it be alright if I were to send in a low-resolution, watermarked logo and favicon, and keep the full-scale images to be sent only if they’re chosen?

  16. 16

    Can we send in multiple entries?

  17. 17

    This should be fun, good luck everybody.

  18. 18

    I am with jwo and Christopher on this issue calling for free design work.

    Not only AIGA has the before mentioned guidelines for professional work, the AGD, BDG and BVDW (all Germany) too.

  19. 19

    I really love this Website but I’m also with jwo and Christopher.

    Let Designers send you some Logos of their Portfolio and then choose one to create your Logo.

  20. 20

    What is the maximum number of entries?

  21. 21

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 14, 2007 6:44 pm

    Update (14.03.2007): You can submit 1-3 designs. You can also send us a watermarked version. But you can be sure that we won’t use any of your logos for our purposes without your permission.

  22. 22

    Its completely upto the designer to choose whether they participate or not. To voice your opinion is obviously your right, but it seems a pretentious and lofty stance on this matter.

    Its all very well for design professionals to hold this lofted view that the design industry is something which should be charged accordingly. I myself see what i do as an art form, and as with any artist enjoy the process of creation, as well as being given an opportunity to showcase new designers rather than larger companies holding monopolies on design specific areas.

    I will be submitting an attempt and look forward to seeing what other designers have created. We are in a creative industry and therefor let those that wish o be creative, get creative and maybe step down off that pedastool.

    Love to smashingmag and contributors.

  23. 23

    I second wez’ opinion.

  24. 24

    wow you guys just lost all the respect i had for you

  25. 25

    we’re all entitled to opinions. Beautiful thing about free societies and ability to pursue happiness.
    But one point I’d like to make: graphic design is a different profession than art. The difference is what successful graphic design does is not an individual expression, like art. It is a representation of an idea or concept that is not the individual. If you want to do art for free, that’s your prerogative. But please at least acknowledge it undermines the value of the design profession. That’s not lofty, or semantics. It’s true. And why so many organizations have established such a position – to establish shared value of the profession and practitioners.

  26. 26

    to jwo, chris and all your likeminded fellow graphic design pussies: please stop whining. this site is great so why not give something great back? and after all it is a contest, so all of you well established professionals really don’t need to participate and present yourself anyways, do you?

    and btw: giving out something for free undermines its value? gee, you need to think about the concept of “making a present”! :-)

    br, schub

  27. 27

    schub, you are confused.
    I love to make presents. I do it all the time. I also make a living designing logos. These are two different things.

    I have a question I’m sure you can answer correctly; advertising on
    a. free
    b. not free

    b, correct.

    Did you actually read AIGA’s point on spec work or are you commenting on my comment?

  28. 28

    To JWO – I do agree with your stance, but I think you should try and put yourself in the position of a young designer who is struggling to break in to the industry.

    To such a person, the exposure of having your work on this site (plus link at the bottom of every page) may be worth a lot more than what an established professional might charge for a logo. The value is relative.

    And lets face it, the authors of this site – who are design professionals – aren’t going to pay anyone to do a logo, they’d do it themselves. I think this has to be seen as an opportunity.

  29. 29

    To JWO,
    Undermining the design profession has nothing to do with particular situation. SM offer a regular update of useful resources that are used by myself, others and even you.

    So perhaps instead of thinking this is a ‘free’ project for SM, granted the drive is a nice return for the winner, perhaps consider that you are giving something back to an invaluable resource.

    I would consider your position, and indeed your are quite correct in that it is neither profitable or correct for companies to play designers off against one another in return for no fee (not sm’s case), but that is not this particular instance in my opinion. You are entitled to choose how you operate in this instance and i presume you will be offering no submission?

  30. 30

    Also… Design is a creative industry and individual expression in terms of operating to a brief. Each designer puts a bit of themselves in what they do, if we didnt would you be no different than someone on a factory work line turning out the same product again and again.

    Individual practice and operation is an art form, just as painting a canvas. If you take away the creativity and a designers ability to interpret a brief for themselves what differentiates you from any other designer?

    design love to all

  31. 31

    Hey guys, just sent my entry, hope you got it!

    I agree with Aaron too. Most of us aren’t professional designers, so this would be great.

  32. 32

    Mostaque Ahammed

    March 16, 2007 3:19 am

    I am a biiiiiiiiiiig fan of Smashing Magazine. A liked every entry.

    Thanks for this opportunity.

  33. 33

    Make your own logo in just one minute here:

  34. 34

    JWO, I’m sorry, I must say I totally disagree. If the client had to choose the designer like you described (deciding on his/her portfolio), only experienced designers would have any chances.

    Every designer must start. Every designer has his first client. Let’s imagine I am just starting and I don’t have a portfolio: what is your advice, if you reject logo contests? To do something for free? I am sure you wouldn’t like it also. How did YOU started then?

    IMHO logo contests are a great chance for beginners, and an opportunity to draw fresh blood to the design world. And it’s the client’s decision whether he wants to hire an established professional with a big portfolio or to give a chance to young, inexperienced but hopefully talented (there must be some!) designers.

    You can expect my entry soon!

  35. 35

    Again, did any of you read the AIGA letter, or are you just subjectively responding?
    Please do you careers, and the profession, a small favor and read it before commenting.

  36. 36

    And looks like SM is blocking my ability to enter comments…so much for free speech.

  37. 37

    Adam Walker Cleaveland

    March 20, 2007 12:36 am

    Want to check out a sweet logo contest (which is NOT NO SPEC work) — please go here:

    Some great prizes too! ONLY 1 WEEK LEFT THOUGH!!!

  38. 38

    I’ve read the AIGA stance (and others like it), and I agree on spec work. I’m also a member of said organization.

    However, some instances clearly don’t apply, and some are in a gray area in my opinion. As designers, we do free work for non-profits all the time. Sometimes it turns into a paid job, but not always.

    I realize that this is a for-profit venture with the ads and all, but honestly, it looks to me like more of a labor of love. A labor that I’ve benefited from immensely in the past few months since I discovered it.

    This isn’t some large corporation making firms jump through hoops in hope of getting a lofty contract. If I find the time, I’ll probably submit a couple of ideas. However, something tells me that the winner will be some “Web 2.0” beveled, gel coated drop shadowed bold san serif. No offense to the Web 2.0 crowd.

    Besides, how many of the submitters will actually be graphic designers in the proper sense? Again, no offense meant.

  39. 39

    where could i sand?
    email adresse?

  40. 40

    kloudo: office at smashingmagazine dot com ( with subject Logo Contest )

  41. 41

    i was searching @ !

  42. 42

    Ok, I’m in game…

  43. 43

    I’d like to knnow if that external HD can be used um eMac!


  44. 44

    Not at all, the designer getting his “start” can and will use “made-up” logo in his or her portfolio. This gives the same chance for displaying work for both new and seasoned designers.

  45. 45

    to aaron, e_anka et al
    Who says I’m not a young designer? That’s a large assumption to be opinion. The average member of AIGA is around 30 YO. Is that young or old?
    And what difference does it make regarding the principle of devaluing your work?

  46. 46

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 24, 2007 6:34 am

    pc and mac

  47. 47

    I agreed with jwo that designer should not just send their mock ups for free. All it show is that they do not value their own work, so how do they expect the client to value their work?

    But the problem is, designer do not stand together. Imagine if you get a request from some big companies and they request for one mock up. Where do you stand? Would you want to let it go when you know there are other 5 design companies (your competitor) who will be happy to submit their mock ups. But if all designers (professionals, or wannabe designers) choose to stand together and say NO to this kind of request, people will stop asking for it!

    Anyway, this request is a contest, and with all contest, it is a cheapskate way of asking people to do something for you. But with all such cheapskate request, you get wannabe designers who will submit their work…… professional designers will not have time to do such things. I’ve yet to see a design contest which produced a good design work. Proof to me if you think I’m wrong…

  48. 48

    Can you post the people who’s mockups you have received? I’m not sure if mine got through.

  49. 49

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    March 26, 2007 10:08 pm

    Samuel, will post the names today.

  50. 50

    It’s a CONTEST.
    It’s like entering your work into one of those Call for Entries magazines. Only certain people get into those, and they are rewarded with recognition and possibly other things. In this case, you’re rewarded with a hard drive , and recognition.
    Nobody is competing for a client.
    Alot of people do this just for the fun of it

    Before you ask, yes I read the page.
    This is still my stance.
    If you want to go fight over clients 24/7 with portfolios that kill, go ahead. Me, I want to have fun with what I do every once in a while. If I win, that’s awesome because I will get just a little more recognition, and something to give me a boost. If I don’t win, I had fun making something and I have yet another piece to add to my portfolio.
    Either way, I am rewarded in some way.
    It’s all about your point of view on something.

    And yes, to me there’s a difference between somebody asking me to design for free/cheap as “it’ll be something to add to your porfolio”, and entering a contest by my own free will for the sake of trying something new.

    Do as you will.


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