Logo Design Trends: The Shift

Jennifer Farley

It’s coming towards the end of the year (where have the months gone?), and around this time people tend to look back and trends and happenings, so I thought now might be an appropriate time to look at some of the popular styles which have been prevalent in logo design. We’ll look at a different trend each week over the coming weeks, and today we’ll start with the shift or overlapping style. (Note: many of these “trends” were around before 2010, they just became more noticeable this year).

The Shift style of logo’s roots lie in print rather than web design and they appear as transparent overlays of color. The shift look appears as letters or objects in RGB or CMYK, appearing as though they are misregistered or printed incorrectly. These logos tend to have limited colors and a very clean look despite the overlapping layers. In the case using pastel colors, the logos look gentle and peaceful, while the logos using reds and dark pinks have a 3D quality about them. That is 3D without wearing 3D glasses.

While the images in logos are obviously static, the shift look gives them a sense of movement or motion which is eye-catching. On first glance these identities look like several elements blending into one, or conversely, one element breaking into several pieces.

So for your design inspiration and visual enjoyment, let’s have a look at a few examples to see what makes these logos unique yet fit into a category.


Mosquito by Jarsson


Double Vision by Jgarnerdesign


Offset Design and Illustration Conference


One Journal Square by Emily Schwartzman


Arterieur and Shapes by Anna Kovecses


Delice by Alex Tass


Illusion Studio by Adrian Knopik


Castle Print by Sean O’Grady


Escape by Bojan Stefanovic

What do you think of these logo designs? Have you seen other logos that you like featuring the “shift” look?