What is the difference between text, iconic, graphical and illustrative logos?

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While there are an infinite number of variables that are possible when it comes to creating a logo, and there are no real absolutes, our designers have found that most logotypes, or 'graphic treatments', will fall into four major categories; Illustrative, Iconic, Graphical and Text Based. Briefly, here's a short description of each - Logo fonts are the simplest (and favored by Fortune 500 corporations) but can be enormously difficult to design - the designer is limited in the 'tricks of the trade' that are available, so the design requires someone with a 'mature' design level. Icon design identities generally feature highly simplified graphics (symbols) that reflect an aspect of the company and/or product portrayed. They can be used solo, or with text. This form of logo is the most common, yet often the most difficult to design. Graphical design logo marks are, in the practical sense, somewhere between an iconic and illustrative logo. These logos are very visually appealing - ... more
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