National Geographic Logo

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National Geographic Logo
The National Geographic logotype was developed by the New York-based brand design agency Chermayeff & Geismar. The major challenge of this task was that NatGeo is an institution with an extremely diverse variety of functions, from environmental conservation to promoting the appreciation of history. So, it needed the emblem that would fit any of the company’s incentives or programs.

Meaning and history

National Geographic Logo history

While working on the logo, the design team was trying to build on the brand’s identity as a magazine. The yellow rectangular shape that can be seen in the National Geographic logo was inspired by the cover of the namesake magazine. According to the research Chermayeff & Geismar had carried out before developing the logotype, this color itself was often associated with the magazine. This could be explained by the fact that the National Geographic magazine had been having a characteristic “sunny” border around its edges since 1888. So it was only natural to stick to it when developing the logo.

Original symbol

national geographic symbolFrom 1888 to 1967, the National Geographic Society used a completely different emblem. It featured a depiction of the Northern hemisphere encircled with the name of the organization and the lettering “Incorporated in A.D. 1888” in white capital letters.


Font National Geographic Logo
The emblem features a clear sans-serif type called NatGeo SemiBold. All the letters are capitals.


Color National Geographic Logo
Some sources mention that yellow as a part of the National Geographic logo symbolizes the sun, which shines in every corner of the globe. The palette also includes black for the background and white for the letters.