The Google Doodle was not invented along with the advent of Google. And one of the most notable things about the Google homepage was its simplicity and elegance; it consisted of a search box and a logo. But in 1998, founders Sergey Brin & Larry page journeyed to the Burning Man festival and desired to notify users of their absence if servers crashed.
Moreover, a little Burning Man-style stick figure was added to the logo as a novel out-of-office message. It was a hit, & so the Google Doodle arrived.
Additionally, an outside contractor took on the Doodle Google design brief till 2000 when Brin and Larry asked PR guy Dennis Hwang to design a Bastille Day logo. Ever since then, a team called ‘Doodlers’ has organized & published doodle for google every day.
Over time, doodles for google have evolved from straightforward logo tweaks to full-blown illustrations, animations & beyond. Google is also known for its hidden treasure elsewhere. So, I have selected the best and highly-rated Google Doodle designs created since 1998.
Best 20 Google Doodle designs
Most doodles for google have been animated or illustrated, but here is a remarkable exception. And to mark what would have been the French photographer Robert Doisneau’s 100th birthday, this best Google doodle includes 4 of his favourite images: The Tugboat, The Three Children, Dog on Wheels and The Kiss.
This animated Google Doodle is the most fascinating we’ve ever seen. Well, created to recognize what would have been the 117th birthday of American dancer & choreographer Martha Graham, it features 5 dancing ladies who spell out the word ‘Google’ with their movements.
Wubbo Ockels’ 74th birthday
Dr. Wubbo Ockels was the first citizen of the Netherland in space, & this Doodle Google celebrates his birthday. Well-known for his positive outlook on life, he was a champion of sustainable energy.
And, I admire the zero-gravity effect shown here as he gently undulates in space. And the moustache is also pretty fun.
JFK 50th anniversary
In 2011, a unique Google Doodle marked the 50th anniversary of JFK’s inaugural address, which included the famous line: “Ask not what your nation can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”
And the team took these words from Kennedy’s speech & rearranged them to spell out the Google logo.
This attractive Lego doodle was created to mark the little toy brick’s 50th anniversary in 2008. Fun fact: Lego art contains a special place in Google founders Larry Page & Sergey Brin’s hearts; additionally, they used the bricks as the casing for 4GB hard disks for a server they were made once they were developing the search engine.
It’s not often Google makes you go ‘wow,’ but here is a notable exception from 2012. Tapping the zipper on this unique Google Doodle made the page split in two, revealing the doodle’s inspiration: Gideon Sundback, who’s the Swedish-American credited with developing the zipper.
The Brothers Grimm
Specifically designed to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Brothers Grimm, this great Doodle Google from 2012 tells Red Riding Hood’s story via 22 lovingly crafted flat-design illustrations.
So, if you spend the time to tap through them all, you are rewarded with an alternative ending to the classic story.
Robert Moog’s 78th birthday
One of Google’s most-liked interactive doodles celebrated the 78th birthday of Robert Moog, the man who created the eponymous synthesizer, in 2012.
And, his creation including heavily in songs by The Beatles, The Doors & others, and this brilliant Doodle lets you try it yourself.
Graphic artist and comic writer Will Eisner are extensively regarded as the father of the graphic novel. In 2011, this elegant Google Doodle honoured what would have been his 94th birthday by steadily combining a 3D comic-style rendering of the Google logo with Eisner’s character, The Spirit, an investigative or a detective from beyond the grave.
A brief music video of Imagine to commemorate what would have been John Lennon’s 70th birthday. Besides, this interactive illustration was created by the doodle for google team’s Mike Dutton, who said: “I hope a moving image will help me adequately and simply thank John for the memories.”
International Women’s Day 2017
In this Doodle, a small girl’s grandmother tells her a bedtime story about her best-loved heroines, from US journalist Ida Wells to Korean activist Lee Tai young.
Live lunar eclipse
An interactive Doodle Google represented in 2011, the lunar eclipse in real-time. Astronomy website Slooh offered Google images from cameras set up in Dubai, South Africa, and the Canary Islands.
Additionally, if you clicked on the slider underneath the Doodle, you could experience the eclipse in all its glory.
In 2011, Google paid homage to sci-fi writer Jules Verne on what would have been his 183rd birthday with this interactive Google Doodle.
Well, the logo showcases the beautiful view of the ocean from a submarine, inspired by his novel Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, & you can explore it using the lever on the right.
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Google disclosed its first interactive doodle in 2010 to mark the 30th anniversary of Pac-Man’s classic arcade game, which remains one of its best.
Based on the original game logic, graphics & sounds, and original bugs from the 1980s masterpiece, it is still an addictive treat.
Google celebrated the life of pioneering female pilot, Amelia Earhart, in 2012, the very initial woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, on what would undoubtedly have been her 115th birthday.
It illustrated Google Doodle depicted her standing on an aeroplane, with ‘Google’ subtly painted on the underside of the wings.
Winsor McCay’s Little Nemo
Little Nemo in Slumberland, the best comic strip about a little boy’s adventures, ran in the New York Herald from 1905-1911.
Additionally, this 2012 doodle celebrated artist Winsor McCay’s 107th anniversary via an interactive comic strip. You can click the tab at the end of every animated section to move on to the next part.
From one moustachioed hero to another. This Doodle Google paid tribute to silent movie star Charlie Chaplin with a video for what would have been his 122nd birthday.
And, it displays a Chaplin lookalike read a Google newspaper, interact with a Google logo, & draw a doodle for google in typically shambolic fashion.
The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi became the centre of global protests against Russia’s homophobic laws, & Google did not sit on the fence.
And, this rainbow-hued Doodle made a straightforward but powerful statement, while the quote from the Olympic Charter below spelled out quite where it stood.
Birth of hip-hop
Google celebrated hip-hop’s 44th anniversary with an enthusiastic Google Doodle in 2017, included a custom-made logo by graffiti artist Cey Adams, interactive turntables on which you could mix samples from classic tracks.
Plus, a serving of hip-hop history, with a focus on its founding pioneers.
The Great Wave of Kanagawa
Doodles for google frequently combine iconic art with the Google logo in innovative ways, and here is one of the best instances.
Celebrating Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai’s birthday, this Google Doodle from 2010 remixed his famous painting, The Great Wave off Kanagawa, to beautiful & elegant effect.