[He brings] a worldly view on design and advertising, said Makayla Schultz, co-president of the Design Guild and one of the organizers of the event.
Logos are an ever changing things, Keene said, [Designers] are craftsman, but at the same time thinkers.
Identity is the main thrust of any logo, said Keene, noting, everything shapes us, which in turn shapes our design perspectives.
Keene said he was influenced by his personal travels. Having grown up in Illinois, he lived in Chicago before moving to San Francisco, and later Hong Kong. Each location offered him a new perspective on life, and therefore on ideas for design.
Today most people are bombarded with branding, from internet ads and billboards to magazines and newspapers, he said.
Keene spoke of the Obama campaign logo he designed with a partner on commission while working for Landor Associates. Obama was unexpected, so his logo should be unexpected as well, Keene said.
Noting that most election years the majority of candidate logos resemble the American flag in shape and color, Keene and his partner created a circular symbol for Obama.
The logo was so well received, other designers began recreating it for their own purposes.
Such imitation is nothing by which to be offended, said Keene, adding that recreations of a given logo confirm its widespread impact.
The accomplished designer said a logo should speak a clear visual language, as images reach everyone, regardless of the verbal language he or she may speak.
Let it happen naturally, Keene said in closing.
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