Clemson University Logo

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Clemson University: Brand overview

Founded: 1889
Clemson, South Carolina, United States
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Clemson University is engaged in research activities and allows students to study in seven areas, including applied, medical, social, and human sciences. It originated in 1889 and was originally called the Clemson Agricultural College of South Carolina. Many campus buildings were built by convicts, with some workers just 13 years old at the time. The university was named Clemson in 1964 when the government recognized its authority and broad capabilities. In 1896 the first football team appeared at the educational institution. She laid the foundation for the future Clemson Tigers sports arm.

Clemson University alumni include many successful business people, athletes, politicians, scientists, and television workers. They celebrate the name of the alma mater, taking it to the next level. As of 2021, this educational institution ranks 74th in the country’s ranking of the best national universities.

All Clemson students are very familiar with its corporate symbols: round stamp and logo. They represent the entire university (primarily the non-sports audience) but are used with restrictions. For example, the word mark is for non-commercial purposes only. It consists of a stylized uppercase lettering “CLEMSON” with a tiger paw print instead of an “O.” The graphic is called Tiger Paw and has existed since 1970. It was created based on a real print of a Bengal tiger’s paw.

Clemson University 3

What is Clemson University?

Clemson University is an American institution of higher education located in Clemson, South Carolina. It was opened in 1889 and was originally an agricultural college. Gradually, the number of directions grew to seven, covering the humanities, social, medical, and other sciences. Now it is a large university, with a ratio of teachers and students, which is 1:18.

The word “UNIVERSITY” is not included in the main logo. If used in alternative versions, it is placed at the bottom and written in reduced letters at large intervals so that the second line is the same length as the first. According to the branding guidelines, the color “UNIVERSITY” can be white, orange (branded Clemson Orange), or purple (Regalia).

The President’s Office must approve the use of the seal. It is placed on official certificates and must be supplemented with the registered trademark mark ®. This identity element is traditionally round. It contains a three-tiered pedestal and a column with palm leaves at the top. The undulating white stripe resembles the mountains that are visible on the horizon. It contrasts with a purple-orange gradient against a stylized palm tree background.

The name of the American state where the educational institution is located is written directly under the pedestal: “SOUTH CAROLINA.” The designers split it into two centered lines and used a sans serif font.

The central part of the seal is outlined by a chain consisting of many small white circles and placed in a wide purple ring. It, in turn, contains the inscription “CLEMSON UNIVERSITY” (in the upper half) and the number “1889” (below). The year of the foundation of the university is separated from its name by two five-pointed stars. This is followed by two thin rings: white and orange. They form the outer contour of the seal.

Clemson University Logo History

Clemson University has its own sports department known as Clemson Tigers. It consists of nineteen varsity teams participating in the Atlantic Coast Conference and competing at the Division I NCAA FBS level. They play football, basketball, baseball, golf, tennis, softball, field hockey, athletics, rowing, swimming, diving, wrestling, boxing, and fencing. Some of them compete in national championships.

The Tigers nickname and mascot was invented by football coach Walter Merritt Riggs, who in 1896 took a job at Clemson Agricultural College of South Carolina (one of the old names of Clemson University). At that moment, he admired the Princeton Tigers, which explains the final choice of the animal.

The sports department has always had tiger logos. Most often, artists focused on the head of a snarling predator and in different colors. She managed to visit yellow-black (in 1928-1934), orange-white (in 1965-1969), and full-color, interspersed with black, orange, white, and blue (in the early 1970s). There was also a period when the tiger was depicted in cartoon style, sitting inside the letter “C” (1951-1964).

Everything changed in the 1970s: after the reshuffle of coaches, the management concluded that it was time to renew the image. Henderson Advertising was involved in the process. Its president Jimmy Henderson personally visited the university, got acquainted with the tiger emblems of other educational institutions, and turned to the Chicago Museum of National History with a request to provide him with a plaster print of a Bengal tiger paw. After that, he photographed the trail, turning it around 10 degrees.

Helen Weaver developed the logo. The final point was put by designer John George Antonio, who created the drawing based on the existing concept. This is how Clemson Tigers got its original brand name in the form of an imprint.

1928 – 1934

Clemson Tigers Logo 1928-1934

One of the earliest Clemson Tigers logos lived up to the moniker of the varsity teams. It contained the light orange head of a roaring tiger, unfolded in the half-full face and facing to the right. To simulate the color of the animal, the artists used long black lines. The illustration looked unrealistic because it lacked detail. A blurry nose, indistinct eyes, and a schematically depicted mouth turned the sport’s emblem into a large orange blot.

1951 – 1964

Clemson Tigers Logo 1951-1964

In 1951, the designers radically changed the style of the logo, turning the formidable snarling predator into a funny cartoon character. The smiling tiger sat inside a large “C” with a long tail dangling to one side in this version. To make it comfortable, the anthropomorphic animal folded its front paws on its chest and bent its hind legs at the knees. As for “C,” this letter represented the name of Clemson University and was written in bold, angular type with truncated sides.

The orange has taken on a dark, almost red hue. He painted the main part of the drawing, including the tiger itself. The palette was complemented by a purple color that accentuated the details. Artists used it for a wide outline around the “C” and numerous stripes on the animal’s body.

1965 – 1969

Clemson Tigers Logo 1965-1969

In 1965, the Clemson Tigers reintroduced the angry snarling tiger logo. His head was turned in full face and consisted of orange lines on a white background. With the help of solid spots and strokes, the designers created a real illustration, where the eyes, ears, frowning eyebrows, wrinkled nose, mustache, and a gaping mouth with teeth are visible. The fur was also drawn, although not in such detail: the developers focused on the mimicry of the predator, wanting to convey its aggressive mood.

Under the head of the tiger was the word “CLEMSON.” It used the same orange hue as the graphic part of the logo. And thanks to the rectangular serif typeface, the lettering looked impressive.

1970 – 1976

Clemson Tigers Logo 1970-1976

In the early 1970s, the varsity teams have updated the logo again. The redrawn version lost its realism because the artists changed the rotation of the head, reduced the detail, and combined several colors. The base of the painting was white, the outlines were black, and the eyes and shadows were purple. Orange color has been used for large spots that spread to the top of the nose, tongue, neck, and half of the ear.

The name of the university has also been modified. The designers made it black and chose a bold sans serif for the lettering. The simple and understandable word “CLEMSON” looked contrasting against the background of an abstract pattern.

1977 – today

Clemson Tigers Logo 1977-present

The most famous Clemson Tigers logo is called Tiger Paw. It was developed by Henderson Advertising, contacted by Robert C. Edwards. The head of the educational institution set a difficult task for the specialists: he wanted the new symbol to emphasize the prestigious image of the university and distinguish it from dozens of other US colleges with similar “feline” emblems.

Jimmy Henderson was the first to suggest using the paw print as a logo. He visited the museum, where the print he needed was kept, photographed it, and depicted it at an angle. Helen Weaver was responsible for developing the original idea and took over the bulk of the work. And John George Antonio embodied all ideas on paper.

Font and Colors of the Emblem

Clemson University Emblem

The Tiger Paw graphic sign traditionally represents sports teams. In addition, it is used for academic purposes: the designers have included it in the university logo, replacing the icon with the letter “O” in the word “CLEMSON.” This symbol can be recognized by its characteristic 10-degree slope and a small white stripe at the bottom formed at the scar’s site.

The wordmark and seal of the educational institution feature the Goudy Old Style font. It is distinguished by contrasting lines in width and elongated pointed serifs. All logos are united by one color – Clemson Orange (# F56600). It is complemented by purple Regalia (# 522D80), which makes the brand highly recognizable.

Clemson University color codes

Spanish Orange Hex color: #f56600
RGB: 245 102 0
CMYK: 0 58 100 4
Pantone: PMS Bright Orange C
Purple Heart Hex color: #522d80
RGB: 82 45 128
CMYK: 36 65 0 50
Pantone: PMS 268 C

The Clemson University logo is its name, located in two lines. The upper and lower parts differ in style, as they are made in different fonts: Clemson – a serif typeface, University – a grotesque. They also do not match color: the inscription is orange at the top and purple at the bottom. A horizontal stripe separates them. The seal shows a palm tree surrounded by the name and year of the university’s foundation.

What is the Clemson symbol?

Clemson’s symbol is a tiger paw print. Previously, it was used instead of the letter “O” in one of the logos, and now it is used separately as an independent emblem.