Category Archives: Logo Design

Logo designs for logo designers aren’t up to snuff

The logo designs of professional logo creators must be the absolute best in the world, right?

Well, maybe. Then again…

Several years ago a Swiss designer, David Pache, posted the logos of 100 logo designers, brand identity consultants and graphic studios on his blog. He declined to assess or critique the logos, but he did make some observations. You can see all the logos and his remarks at HelveticBrands – 100 Logos

But I’m not as impartial as David. I’ve made some assessments and specific critiques about several of the logos presented. Continue reading Logo designs for logo designers aren’t up to snuff

Foundational Illustrations as a Branding Element?

Logos have always been pretty static. Even in the age television, when a logo was animated it retained its identity. But in recent years, there has been a trend toward not only animating by presenting the logo in different forms and formats

Chuck Green, blog master at PagePlane, recently posted about an art gallery in New York City that has taken its logo and morphed it with each of six different web pages. It is pretty slick. It starts with the illustration below.You could see it morph by clicking Charming Wall.

CharmingWall - variable logo

Chuck labeled the technique, “Foundational Illustration” because there is a basic piece of art from which the variations spring.

I commented on Chuck’s blog that I had mixed emotions about this type of logo presentation. When there is no continuity in the logo it will not perform one of its traditional duties with authority; that is providing immediate brand recognition. It does however attract attention and provide a uniqueness which leads to a pleasant and memorable visual treat.

I concluded as long as a great number of advertisers do not use this technique the small number of companies who do use it will find it beneficial. But if people start jumping on this bandwagon, confusion will reign.

Networks and Tribes, oh my!

There’s been a lot of Internet marketing gurus, including Jack Humphrey at Friday Traffic Report, that are espousing tribe-gathering.

As a traffic building and customer retention process, I absolutely endorse the concept. But it’s nothing new.

Just ask Harley Davidson owners.

In fact, if you get right down to it, isn’t that the purpose of branding, either on-line or off?

That might even develop the shortest and most accurate definition of branding ever devised: gathering a tribe.

Evaluating logos and logo designers.

I’ve blogged about logos and the need to keep them simple and unique. Now I know that’s not as simple as I make it out to be. In trying to be more helpful, I found a couple of blogs that may be of some help.

Jack Trout recently blogged at BrandStrategyInsider about Evaluating Brands.

Then PonderMarketing provided five criteria as well as pointed us to some trends in logo design uncovered by OrangeLogo. Continue reading Evaluating logos and logo designers.

Logo design guidelines abet a strong brand

Unless you’re a graphics designer, you may never design a brand’s logo. But it doesn’t hurt to know the “rules” of good logo design. You can use them in evaluating proposed designs, and you might use them when interviewing logo designers for an assignment.

Jeff Fisher’s LogoMotives logoThat’s what today’s entry is about: logo design rules.

Jeff Fisher, Engineer of Creative Identity, at Jeff Fisher LogoMotives, has compiled the thoughts of several logo designers of his acquaintance about the rules or guidelines they will normally apply to designing a logo.

You can see the entire article by clicking logo design.

I derived three rules the designers seemed to agree upon, and strangely enough, so do I. They are:

1) Begin with a creative brief of some sort. Be sure you know the vision, mission, goals and capabilities of the client. Define your major markets. Determine the “tone” you wish the logo to possess. Know the applications the logo might find itself applied to.

2) Start “doodling” designs in pencil and in black and white. The pencil gives you freedom to sketch and refine without the “discipline” of computer design software. Once you’re ready to prepare “comps”, use a vector-based program (Adobe Illustrator, CorelDraw, Macromedia Freehand or Xara Extreme). But continue to design in black on white. (Adding color(s) can clearly enhance the design, but the logo will also be required in the one-color version first. If it works in black and white, it’ll work in color.)

3) Keep the designs simple. There’s the temptation to use all the features of a full-fledged design program – gradient fills, drop shadows, extrusions and the like. You also want to keep the number of elements and colors to a minimum.

Another “rule” I impose on logo designs: Don’t resort to incorporating a name’s initials. Monograms are fun and visually appealing, but unless your company name is made up of initials only – a bad idea to start with – they direct people to use the “shorthand” instead of the name you so lovingly crafted.

And then the article discusses the need to know when to break the rules.

Incidentally, Jeff Fisher’s blog is filled with good advice about logos and other aspects of branding and graphics. I recommend it.

Martin Jelsema