Tuesday, 5 January 2010


Since I retired I have developed an interest in logos and catch phrases (politically they’re call sound bytes). These seemingly innocent little designs can have a powerful influence on all our lives. I’ve designed a few for small local activities and enjoyed it very much.
The picture is a logo from a company I worked for for almost thirty years. The designer is unknown but it would have been designed in the mid fifties and was the company’s trade mark until its absorption into AE Piston Products in the late eighties. The company was Aeroplane & Motor Aluminium Castings and our speciality was die cast pistons for cars and boats and trains plus the odd aircraft and a few tractors. We were the largest producer in Europe. The logo expressed who we were and what we did. Our customers included RR, Bentley, Austin, Morris, Jaguar, Rover, Cadillac, Buick, Lada, and Ford in fact we used to claim that if it moved our products moved it. I was very proud of our logo and the products it appeared on. Unless you were involved with advanced manufacturing no one would ever see our logo because the products were built into engines. In fact my kids thought I produced nothing of importance.
Some logos are instantly recognised like BBC or NHS not because they are of good design but because they have been around for so long. Which brings me to catch phrases? This Christmas a couple have caught my eye as outstanding. An ad for alcoholic drink “See your wife’s face light up this Christmas! Buy her a torch” and the best “If you pull a cracker this Christmas make sure you wear a condom”.
Advertising has won and lost elections and I can think of several good examples The Tory ad “Labour isn’t working” on a poster with a long dole queue. Labours campaign in 97 with the theme tune things can only get better, brilliant, but their advertising campaign was just as good. Simple ads referring to class sizes getting smaller, waiting lists coming down. The Tory campaign representing Blair has the devil just turned people off and the phrase Michael Howard used “are you thinking what we’re thinking was total rubbish. With the election campaign now in full swing we can expect to see the ads start appearing. Some pundit this morning was complaining that the Tories had so much money to spend on advertising they must win this aspect of the campaign. Nonsense, but Labour has to think carefully and creatively about their output. It’s difficult to image that any ads approved by GB will have flair or creativity associated with them. I might do a couple of designs for each side.


Fat Prophet said...

I have a suggestion for a logo for all political parties - a cowboy and a native American (Red Indian to us older folk) with the caption 'Me think he speak with forked tongue' because i am fairly certain there will be a lot of that going on as the politicians promise us the earth and deliver 'Naff All' to quote the Princess Royal (sorry if mentions of Royalty are not allowed but stronger words should really not be used on a family blog)

Bob the Black Country Brummie said...

Strong words and royalty is OK by me. I would draw the line at the most offensive four letter kind.
I like the forked tongue reference.