Does Your Logo or Wordmark Pass the Black and White Test?
So many companies, each having their own brand identity and distinctive logo. But how do these logos stand up when printed out in the black and white mode? Not everyone has a color printer connected to their computer.
Everyday I receive assorted html, colorful emails and there are some that I save and sometimes print out. I happen to have a color printer so this isn’t an issue for what I receive, but I send “html newsletter” emails also and I’ve seen my own emails printed out in black and white, and I’m always happy that my logo is in a white box and the letter forms translate fine. I also occasionally fax something and that is certainly going through in black and white.
I suggest checking out what your logo looks like in black and white, and if it’s not reproducing the way you’d like, you’ll need to create another version of your logo in black and white or grayscale mode. Then you have the right file to use for the right case.
Below I show a few examples of logos that translate well into black and white (or grayscale) and a few that are aren’t working as well.
When a logo is more like a wordmark and a solid color like red, it usually translates well.
When your typography is laying over an illustration is can still work just fine if that type is white, it’s the image they may not see as clearly.
Google’s logo is quite colorful, but you’ll clearly see that the yellow letter doesn’t come through as strongly as the other letters.
Paul Newman’s Own, the subtitle is getting a bit lost, but because the title was black on a light yellow background, it works fine.
(Just an fyi, they make the greatest salt and pepper pretzels ever!)
In this last case you’ll see how the red and black colors become close hues of dark gray and black, and yet still readable, but they might have needed a separate version created with the “rolling stones” part lighter or white.
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