Google Welcomes First Day of Summer & Winter With Takashi Murakami Doodles

Summer is finally here – well, at 1:16 p.m. officially for those of us on the East Coast in the U.S.  In honor of the summer solstice – the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere – Google has tapped a guest Doodler, Japanese artist Takashi Murakami, to create a special anime flavored kawaii logo for Google’s home page.

Summer Solstice Google Doodle 2011

The logo is bright, flowery, and colorful, fittingly, but is a non-traditional way to celebrate summer for Google. And does anyone else find the right head, which resembles a vampiric Stewie Griffin on an LSD trip, very creepy?

Murakami, who was on Time magazine’s 2008 edition of the 100 Most Influential People list and is noted for his “superflat” style, also illustrated a second snowy logo for Google, which appears in locations in the Southern Hemisphere today for their winter solstice.

Winter Solstice Google Doodle 2011

Last year, Google welcomed summer with four separate summer Doodles (as well as four winter Doodles for countries in the Southern Hemisphere). Here’s a compilation:

Summer Solstice Google Doodles 2010

Winter Solstice Google Doodles 2010

In addition to a Father’s Day Doodle in 2009, Google also posted summer and winter logos in select countries:

Summer Solstice Google Doodle 2009

Winter Solstice Google Doodle 2009

The first summer solstice Google Doodle appeared in 2008:

Summer Solstice Google Doodle 2008

What do you think of today’s Doodles?

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