The stock photo agency Corbis has come a long way since its early 1990s incorporation into the workflow of designers looking for good photos of handshakes, among other broad selections. For the longest time, it was quickly identifiable by its “swirl” logo and super tracked out serif — here’s an old set of identity guidelines — and in the twenty-first century by its futuristic evolution (shown above) designed by Chicago-based Segura Inc. in 2004. At the time, or at least at the time leading up to that time, the stock photo industry was burgeoning and the Corbis and Getty big dogs were eating the competition. What a difference five years — and iStockphoto — make. To reflect the changing times, Corbis has evolved into a more friendly, appealing and design-oriented wordmark.
New wordmark in red, old one in blue.
Back in 2007, Corbis acquired Veer, one of the most popular and designer-friendly photo and type merchants of the last years. One part of what has made Veer so appealing has been the materials produced and the brand built by their talented in-house design team, and in that same vein, they have redesigned from within the Corbis wordmark. Led by Sheldon Popiel, Creative Director, Global Brands for Corbis, the new wordmark puts behind the hard angles of the old logo and embraces a more geometric wordmark whose letterforms blend together much more nicely. The “co” is delicious, and keeping the quirky “rb” semi-ligature was a great idea, nicely executed in the simpler style.
This is not a big, look-at-me! rebrand, just a simple, quiet evolution that signals a recommitment to the brand. And they still have handshake photos.
Photo: © Tim McConville/zefa/Corbis.