Graphic Designers: What’s the one thing you wish you had designed?

The 2Paragraphs Interview Answer

paula scher

Paula Scher Designer, artist, educator

I wish I had designed the Verizon logo because I hate it so much. I hate it because it doesn't have much respect for its audience. The hyperactive "z" is supposed to connote energy and, I assume, connectivity. The poor "z" was so afraid that its public wouldn't notice that it was energetic, that it went out and got all dressed up in red and added a lengthy gradation on its exaggerated lower stroke. But that wasn't enough. The poor thing has to wear a big red check mark for a hat. Why? Doesn't it know that it's overdressed?

The whole design looks like it was the result of a pile of indecisive internal meetings where an enormous committee ran rampant, suggesting interventions that would make the logo look active. What a shame. I like Verizon as a company more than AT&T, who invariably jack-up my iPhone bill. Verizon deserves a smarter logo.

scher verizon

The logo Paula Scher hates

Paula Scher is a principal at Pentagram, which she joined in 1991. Some of her most memorable/visible campaigns include The Public Theater posters, logotype for MoMA, The Metropolitan Opera, and the New York City Ballet. In 2002, Princeton Architectural Press published her career monograph Make It Bigger

  • Josh

    Preach it, Ms. Scher!

    I’ve always been flustered by the fact that the checkmark possesses no characteristics of marriage to the type besides color.

    A company touting network coverage might be interested in considering the connectivity between their brand’s elements, yeah?

  • Adrian Elliot

    “i-phone”? Come on Paula, you should know better.

    • 2Paragraphs

      Thanks, Adrian. The “i-phone” was an editor’s mistake. Now it’s fixed.

  • Be_are_why

    You always fights the easy battles. You takes the obvious and acts like it’s your personal cause celebre. EVERYBODY thinks the verizon logo sucks – and have since the first time they ever saw it. How come it took you 20 years to say anything? because you had to be absolutely positive it was safe to do so.

  • Alex C

    I agree that the Verizon logo sucks, but why is it not presented properly? It appears to have be stretched vertically/squashed horizontally. It’s bad enough on its own without mangling the logo.

  • Ricardo Cordoba

    Be_Are_Why, or the bravery of the anonymous commenter. It’s easy to make a personal attack while hiding behind a made-up name.

  • Jason Pruitt

    @ Ricardo — Scher is famous for ripping people off. Of course people are going to attack her.