So, how do you design a decent logo?
Here are a few tips that will hopefully give you a heads up on some good (and maybe obvious) points to consider when starting out designing a logo.
- I’ve seen this before… You should design a logo to suit the needs of the project or client. Don’t fall back onto a logo you’ve designed before - the logo and branding of a company go hand in hand, your responsibility as a designer is to create something memorable and unique for your client!
- What is it…? Every logo should convey a message to the viewer. If potential consumers know or understand nothing about your client after looking at the logo, you have failed as a good designer (sorry).
- WHY IS MY LOGO ALL PIXELLATED?! Your logo needs to be scalable so put down Photoshop, use the right tools for the job - Illustrator is pretty much the program you need to be using - never use Flash to design a logo (or Microsoft Word….)
- I have a gold membership on Stockphoto… Steer clear from anything expected. Remember, your logo should be memorable for the customer. By adding cliché, clip-art images, your logo will look unprofessional and be quickly thrown on the rubbish tip.
- What is it? Some designers complicate their logos by adding lots of detail, too many words, taglines, colours etc. Keep it simple. You’ll be more memorable - think Nike.
- I found the filters on Photoshop - I couldn’t decide which to use…so I used all of them! For the most part, you should avoid excessive bevels, shadows, textures, filters. This will allow your logo to be used across many mediums - not to mention won’t be rubbish.
- Typography Issues. There are a number of common mistakes that are frequently made when designing a logo. Consider some below:
- The Spacing. Fonts are built a certain way for a reason. Excessive spacing between letters or very narrow spacing can really affect the readers interpretation of words (or cause confusion)
- Predictable Fonts. Helvetica is a brilliant font - but don’t use it for everything. Research new fonts, design your own! Just try to use something that isn’t predictable or the default.
- Crazy Fonts. Don’t use fonts like Party Let or Papyrus or Jokerman to create your logo. Try using simple, professional, legible fonts.
- Don’t use Comic Sans. Period.
- Ultra-thin fonts. Many extremely lightweight fonts may look nice on the computer screen but they may be difficult to use when trying to print on paper, screen on fabric, or embroider. Lightwieght fonts are also hard to read from far distances.
- Too many fonts. Try to stick to one font-style (maximum of two) in your logo design. This rule is especially true when you are doing JUST the logo design and not any of the other design work.
- What do you think? Excessive input from your client, his Mom, the secretary, your dad, your postman, the guy who sweeps the road outside your house and anyone else who will give you the time of day is well, excessive. Keep the design pure and clean by only involving those who absolutely need to be involved in the design process.
- Unable to be used in grayscale. One important thing to remember about logos is that they frequently will be used in strictly grayscale circumstances. (Faxes, copies, one-color prints) Make your logo as powerful in both color and black & white.
- Non-scalable. This is one of the most common tips around for creating logos. Make sure your client can scale their logo. Most logos should be usable in anything from a giant billboard to a tiny web icon.
- Not made for all mediums. People often design logos without taking into consideration their future use. Be sure to deign your logos with the intent that they can be used on the internet, in print, on a street sign, embroidered on a backpack, and screen printed on a t-shirt.
- Look at MY design. Don’t design a logo with the goal in mind that it will make your portfolio look great. The first, and most important, goal of any logo design should be to help your client reach their target audience more effectively.
- Too abstract. While an abstract logo can be very professional-looking for a company, what does it really say to the customer? “We weren’t really sure how to visually represent what we do or how you will benefit from our services, so here’s a square with a swoosh”.
- Copy Cat Logo. BE ORIGINAL.
- Bad combination of colors. Try to match the colors to your target audience, think about using complementary colours - neon green and red is never going to be a good look - be sensitive to the clients wishes, but design with consideration.
- Sketch it out first. Don’t just jump on a Mac - research and sketch out some ideas first - not many good logos are born out of an instant jump on the Mac session!!
I hope this helps you all out a little bit! And remember if you need any other advice please just drop me a message here at DesignLecturer!