Bolin Logo Redo: 1980s

By Justin Zwieg  /  Chief Creative Officer

Big Hair, Big Colors & Big Dreams: Design In The 80s

If the 70’s was a decade of acknowledging our connection to the environment and each other, it could be argued that the 1980’s was the complete opposite. “Greed is good,” was declared in the now-iconic movie Wall Street, and with a booming economy, many Americans rushed to invest and then quickly spend their money. Yuppies replaced the socially conscious hippies of the 70s, VCR and cable television became standard in most homes, and MTV revolutionized the recording industry – allowing artists like Madonna and Prince to hone their image alongside their music. Gone was the subtle, earthy introversion of the 70s. In it’s place lived flashy, unapologetic flamboyance. In life and in design. 

While style icons of the time sported big hair and even bigger shoulder pads, designers were playing with metallic type treatments, geometric shapes, and bright, neon colors. Drop shadows, outer glows, and script fonts were being used almost offensively. Everything was high impact, high contrast, and high fidelity. Designers, like many Americans, were pushing the boundary of what could be considered in good taste. Many were crossing it.

Bolin In The 1980s

In the 1980s, Bolin was busy integrating personal computers into its workflow and exploring the potential of early graphic design programs like PageMaker and FreeHand – programs that now feel outdated, but at the time, offered capabilities few had ever dreamed of. For the 1980’s installment in the Bolin Logo Redo, I challenged the team to design with reference not only to the aesthetic of the time, but also with a nod to the the software limitations as well.

Many would suggest we will never again see a decade like the 80s. But, I hope that’s not the case. In design as it was in life, the 1980s allowed a generation to explore their personal style in a completely new way. To combine color, shape, pattern and texture and create something new. Something bold and unique. Sure, many times it just didn’t work. But if designers stopped every time something didn’t work…well…we’d never get anything done.

Check out previous installments in the Bolin Logo Redo here on our blog or on our Instagram @bolinagency. And be sure to stay tuned for decades and logos to come!

Previous Logo Reimaginings