A logo gives the power of creating a visual communication between the visitor and a company, which serves as an extension to the company’s business. A logo should be designed in such a way that it serves the company’s identity on Websites, brochures, fax forms, social media, and almost everywhere. Speaking in a more structured and a technical way, a Logo is a graphical representation that embeds the characteristic feature of an organization. It is actually a fusion of the creative, technical and entrepreneurial abilities of the designer. There is no denying to the fact that visually, it is more than easy to retain something in our memory than just names. There comes the uniqueness of your Logo, which stands above the rest. It acts as a trademark for a particular organization, and people get to identify them.
A memorable logo is just the beginning – yet an extremely important beginning – that sets the overall tone for your new existing brand.
Sometimes designers tend to make mistakes and, sometimes the end result worsens. It usually happens when the designer uses the same fonts as used in rest of the website, wrong use of colors, may happen that the logo turns out to be too flashy, busy, or more detailed than it should be. There must be a possibility that it has no uniqueness of its own and, it is very much similar to the others.
When creating a logo you must pay attention to simplicity, readability, fonts, color, originality, and if it is appropriate for the business it should represent.
We’ve put together a list of steps that should form a process witch can be used on every logo design project.
- Design brief
- Finishing touches
- Sending the files
Compiled from a Q&A session with the client, a design brief saves everyone time. It helps focus attention on the details that best cater to the target audience, in a timely manner.
Jacob Cass, who is the mind behind JustCreativeDesign.com, has a Logo Design Questionnaire you can download and use as a reference for your own questionnaire. Jacob also wrote a wide range of articles covering Logo Design, which are a great way to stay up to date in this business.
Logobird wrote an article, with the client in mind, on how to prepare an effective logo design brief as a client, so you won’t end up with a half-baked identity.
While researching you have to consider your client’s history, the future he/she aspires towards, the customers he/she has (and those he/she wants to have), the role of the company employees, the client’s competitors and the market trends. This research shouldn’t be a 300 page document; it should only give you an idea of the client’s current and future presence on the market.
You can learn more on research at Niche Profit Classroom, they have an impressive sum of articles on this area of expertise.
Sketching helps generate a strong set of possible directions, most sketches will eventually be made redundant, but the point is to explore every possible direction before choosing the most effective idea. A sketch shouldn’t be 100% precise and final, it should an experiment on what a Company Name or Brand can mean and symbolize.
We’ve selected David Airey‘s WDE logo for this example:
You will have to narrow the design focus until you have one or two strong options for digitizing and conceptualizing. The digitizing stage involves transferring these options to Adobe Illustrator, to Photoshop, and actually creating the logo in mind in a digital format.
Here is the final version of the above sketched logo:
David found it important to eliminate noise from his designs so that no matter what shade of background, the outcome still works.
Eventually the Green version was chosen for its “go” symbolism.
After you have a few solid logos you send them to your client, also mentioning why you did pick these logos, why do you think they’re appropriate for their business, etc.
When sending the logo variants, you have to send each logo on a white background, on a black background and in gray scale; the logo should be in the middle on normal scale and in the bottom right corner in small scale.
These unwritten rules allow the client to see how the logo looks and functions in small/large scale or on different backgrounds, this way he will see if the logo is readable enough to be recognized in a small size or can be used on darker or lighter backgrounds. Grayscale is useful because the client can see how the logo would look if it would be printed on a black and white printer. These samples are necessary because eventually the logo will define the whole identity package and even the colors of the website.
Following client’s review, you’ll either finalize the project, or make any revisions agreed upon. The main aim is to create a visual identity that works for the respective business for many years to come. There’s always flexibility in this process because you can explain to the client why he’s idea of revising is bad or why it should be done as you proposed.
For every beautiful logo, there’s always plenty more nice designs that you don’t always get to see. Once the product has launched, the buyers will have something tangible to relate to – the logo will make more sense to those who find it confusing.
These are the small changes, revisions a client will request if he is not 100% satisfied with your creation. These changes should be limited by you to 1 or maybe 2 tiers, so the project’s budget won’t get changed. After these revisions are made, and the client is still unsatisfied with your work, you should ask the client for a list of things he doesn’t like and ask him to comment does things, so you will know what and how to change exactly as the client wants. Sometimes the client will want his logo exactly as he imagined it, so there will be a tiny or no creativity necessary from your part, but as I always say, these clients should design their logo themselves.
Sending files to your client
After the client’s approval, the chosen logo should be sent to him by e-mail or written on a CD/DVD and mailed. The client doesn’t care and don’t know what an industry standard file format is, so it would be a great help if you explain it to him in a few sentences.
Every logo should be in Vector format (AI, CDR, PSD) for scalability, and should be exported in a more often used preview format (JPG, PDF). The vector format is crucial for a logo so it can be modified if necessary, so it doesn’t require the client or any digital printing company to download missing fonts.
The above described process is used in our company on every logo design project and it speeds up our work, because it eliminates any miscommunication between you, the logo designer, and the client.
I hope everyone who reads this will have a better future in designing logos and it will help them to get an insight of a company’s design process.
Don’t hesitate to post your comments or your own logo design process in the comments below or provide feedback for our own.
About the author
Schumi, is a rising star designer and blogger, with three years experience in graphic design. He is a new comer to WebGurus, eager to learn and put in practice the tricks of a pro designer.
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