The Top 10 Most Famous Ambigrams

Apr 20th, 2009 | By | Category: Ambigram Gallery, Fun Stuff

While thousands of ambigrams are in circulation, only a handful of these magical designs have risen above individual usage to become part of mainstream products.

To make our list of the Most Famous Ambigrams, an ambigram had to 1) be part of a mainstream product, 2) be exposed to a large number of people and 3) be a rotationally symmetric ambigram.

Here is the list of the “Top 10 Most Famous Ambigrams” from Ambigram.com:

  • Paul McCartney - Chaos and Creation in the Backyard

    Paul McCartney - Chaos and Creation in the Backyard

    Paul McCartney’s album “Chaos and Creation in the Backyard” featured an ambigram of the words “Paul McCartney” on the album cover.  Although the album was not a huge commercial success, the album was the biggest to feature an ambigram on the cover.

  • Princess Bride 20th Anniversary Edition

    Princess Bride 20th Anniversary Edition

    The 20th Anniversary Edition of the movie “the Princess Bride” featured an ambigram on the cover of the DVD and Blu-Ray releases created by Menagerie Creative.  The Princess Bride ambigram was accompanied by a photo that appears at first as a reflection, but upon closer inspection has some subtle insights into the story’s plotline.

    As a side note: there is a second ambigram inside the DVD booklet of the words “True / Love”, but that particular design isn’t famous enough to make our “Top 10″ list.

  • Glam Rock Band "Angel"

    Glam Rock Band "Angel"

    Glam rock band “Angel”, whose members always dressed in white, adopted a Robert Petrick ambigram logo of the band’s name in 1976 and continued to use it until 1992.

  • "New Man" Clothing Company's ambigram logo

    "New Man" Clothing Company's ambigram logo

    French clothing company “New Man” began using thisRaymond Loewy designed ambigram in 1969…and they are still using it today.

  • NASA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) logo

    NASA's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) logo

    Scott Kim created the logo for NASA’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), and since there is no “up” in space, the satellite’s logo is a rotational ambigram.

  • Angels and Demons Illuminati ambigram

    Angels and Demons Illuminati ambigram

    The first ambigram encountered in Dan Brown’s book “Angels and Demons” is the Illuminati ambigram, which launches the lead character Robert Langdon (played by Tom Hanks in the movie adaptation) on his quest.  The ambigram was drawn by artist John Langdon, who lends his surname to the lead character in the story.

  • "Angels and Demons" Earth Ambigram

    "Angels and Demons" Earth Ambigram

    Since the “Angels and Demons” book was such a big success (reportedly the second most popular book in America among people 32-43 years old), the rest of this Top 10 list is monopolized by the designs in the book.  Here is the Earth ambigram, drawn by John Langdon.

  • "Angels and Demons" Air Ambigram

    "Angels and Demons" Air Ambigram

    The “Air” custom ambigram from “Angels and Demons”, by John Langdon.

  • "Angels and Demons" Fire Ambigram

    "Angels and Demons" Fire Ambigram

    The “Fire” ambigram from “Angels and Demons”, which is at the center of one of the most gruesome parts of the story.

  • "Angels and Demons" Water Ambigram

    "Angels and Demons" Water Ambigram

    Finally, to round out the Top 10, here is the Angels and Demons ambigram of “Water”, also drawn by John Langdon.

There you have it. The “Top 10 Most Famous Ambigrams” from Ambigram.com, with fully HALF of the list from author Dan Brown and artist John Langdon!

In fact, if we were to extend the list further to the “Top 12 Most Famous Ambigrams“, the “Illuminati Diamond” final ambigram in “Angels and Demons” (which has also become popular as an ambigram tattoo), and the book’s ambigram title (in certain regions) would populate the remaining spots!

So, to say that “Angels and Demons” has had an impact on the ambigram space would be a huge understatement.

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22 comments
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  1. These ambigrams are really cool! I remember reading Angels and Demons and enjoying them more than the actual story!

    And I love that Princes Bride one…one of my favorite movies of all time!

  2. This is a really great top ten list, these Ambigrams are cool. Te Princess Bride is a classic one, and I like Scott Kim’s creation for NASA a lot. You can post this to our site http://www.toptentopten.com/ and then link back to your site. We are looking for top ten lists and our users can track back to your site. The coolest feature is you can let other people vote on the rankings of your list.

  3. [...] Editor placed an observative post today on The Top 10 Most Famous Ambigrams (Ambigram.com)Here’s a quick excerptFinally, to round out the Top 10, here is the Angels and Demons ambigram of “Water”, also drawn by John Langdon. There you have it. The “Top 10 Most Famous Ambigrams” from Ambigram.com, with fully HALF of the list from author Dan Brown … [...]

  4. This site is great. I didn’t know McCartney had an album cover with an ambigram; now I ‘ll buy that album.

  5. I love the ambigrams on your site!!
    I’m an artiste myself but I’ve been trying to make an ambigram of my name and……. so far it looks pathetic!! Any ideas or tips you could give me???

  6. Wangai:

    Want a tip? I have just finished drawing my very first piece of an ambigram (ANGEL-DEVIL) to be my next tattoo design. I hope I can upload it in the future. The steps below are actually what I did (laughs).

    1) You may need a Speedball booklet as your reference.
    2) Choose a font type you really like.
    3) Draw your name using that font.
    4) Rotate the paper upside down (180 degrees).
    5) Draw your name again on top of your name previously drawn.
    6) Now, combine each letter’s elements (serifs, curved lines, dots, etc.) to make them look/appear as the ones inverted.
    7) If you’re not satisfied, practice… more. A great artwork begins with a lot of practice. (Does that saying make sense?)

  7. Self-correction: It is a Speedball Textbook by the way and of course, you can use a Speedball pen or draw it freehand.

  8. Don’t forget the all the DIO albums, Turn Dio upside down. Check out Holy Diver or Last in Line

  9. Looking for ambigrams in the Internet I found lots of things related with Angels and Demos, if you know Italian here you have an Ambigram Generator http://www.ambigramquest.com/it/

    In order to find it you must find be able to read the two ambigrams generated.

  10. In reply to Wangai:

    In making an ambigram of your name, I would recommend mixing upper and lower case letters this way: Make the “N” as the rotation point. It is near the middle and it looks like itself when you turn it upside-down. Style the “a” with the tail above it, as you see in this font, to look much like the less-used font of “g” that has the “tail-with-a-bubble” off the lower left side instead of the curved tail off the lower right that is used in this font. Make the large round circular areas of these two letters just barely smaller than your “N,” and extend their tails past the “N” a little bit. Then combine the “AI” to resemble an upside-down “W.” It’s OK to put a cross-bar inside the “W” where the counterpart of “A” belongs. If you don’t like the whole cross-bar, make it reach only part way across. The “A” will still look complete even if the cross-bar doesn’t go all the way through.

    I hope this helps!
    Rebecca May – http://sites.google.com/site/ambigramgreetings

  11. The Illuminati Diamond.. that should be in the list as the most perfect ambigram: aethetically, thematically and execution…?

    salam,
    nagfa

  12. Good list…but I must say that the LIFE-DEATH ambigram is the most well known…performing ambigrams all over, I always have people come up to me after our show and say, “HAVE YOU SEEN THIS ONE?” And they pull out a card that has LIFE/DEATH on it. I have yet for anyone to ask me about these. But these ambigrams are great.

  13. Ya, even i think the ambigram with all 4 elements from “Angels and Demons” was very good, It should’ve made the top 3 !!!

  14. I am a huge fan of Angels & Demons, and the brands were the first thing that turned me into an Ambigram fanatic. I love how they look so elegant. I attempted my name and it totally failed. I will need a hell of a lot more practice. It’s harder than it looks. I do the generators all the time to see how I could do it. I try and try, but get so close, then lose it. Angelique is a hard name to do. I could go by Angie, but it just doesn’t sound good at all.
    But, the A&D ambigrams are the best. I love the Fire one the most. Go Fire! Haha!

  15. The ambigram of “Paul McCartney” is designed by
    Rob O’Connor and Anthony Lui.
    http://www.stylorouge.co.uk/info/team/rob.php

    It is described in the book “Sticky Graphics”,
    (ISBN:978-2-940361-26-7), p.69.

  16. The ambigrams drawn by John Langdon is the best ambigrams i’ve ever seen. Really cool…

  17. the “Angle” ambigram was created by John Langdon, also.

  18. [...] http://www.ambigram.com/most-famous-ambigrams Click here to cancel [...]

  19. Although only a minor fan of their music, I’ve been a great fan of Angel’s logo! It inspired me, as a graphics designer, to design an ambigram for a company with the name “Pearl”. Although it turned out well, the client didn’t “get it” and it was rejected. “ANGEL”…still one of my all-time favorite logos.

  20. I do miss the “Sun Microsystems” logo by Vaughan Pratt. That’s a classic and everyone using java (most home-computers) have seen it.

  21. [...] Raymond Loewy creates NEW MAN [...]

  22. It was such a thrill to conceptualize an ambigram for this film. We weren’t sure Twentieth Century Fox would take the leap but we were sure happy when they did! Here’s a link to a little more about the project! http://www.menageriecreative.com/blog/archives/217


 
If you liked this page, you may also be interested in creating your own ambigrams or ambigram tattoos.