Designs on dining: Restaurant logos as a graphic invitation to a meal and an experience

Over the years some of my own most enjoyable, challenging and visible identity design projects have been those for restaurant industry businesses. Much of the pleasure comes from an ability to push the creative envelope a bit and not be limited by the often-conservative boundaries of much more corporate identity design. I usually have an opportunity to be more playful with restaurant logos and have more fun with color. In addition, the architecture of the buildings, the design of the interiors, the type of food to be served and other elements come into play. The challenges of such projects most often raise their ugly heads in the form of budget limitations and the lateness of some restaurant owners to initiate the logo/identity design process for their new business in a timely manner – especially when the scheduling of projects for other vendors are overlooked. The visibility, and multiple uses, of the completed eating establishment image is a valuable marketing tool for a designer as easily recognizable public exposure of one’s design work. Unfortunately, with something like 50% of all restaurants closing in the first two to three years in business the visibility of such design examples often is limited in duration. (That figure is not necessarily more dramatic than the failure rate of other start-up businesses – the boarding up of a local dining establishment is often just more evident to the average person viewing from the street.)

The above is the introduction to a "Logo Notions" column I recently wrote on the topic of restaurant identity. You can check out the entire article at

© 2005 Jeff Fisher LogoMotives

1 comment:

wade said...

Great article on Creative Lattitude, Jeff. I have worked with restaurants for years and some of the stories of tight deadlines and even tighter budgets make me shiver. But, as you said, there are freedoms within designing for restaurants that you don't have with other types of businesses. Designing for restaurants in a truly unique challenge.