Why am I writing a post on logo design when the topic of this blog is puppetry? A logo is the most predominant and most powerful part behind turning your hobby/ministry/business into a brand that people remember, a simple image that reminds people of you when they see it.
Unfortunately, there are thousands, if not millions of people out there claiming to be a professional designer. People putting out crappy logos in bulk for cheap. On the other end, you have those who are good and know it, and charge an arm and a leg for their work. Then there are those in the middle who are great designers and charge reasonable fees, but how do you know that you are getting a great design?
Here are 10 things to look for when creating a logo that works. Whether paying for a professional design or doing it yourself, keep these in mind and you should end up with something remembered.
1. Visual Interest
The logo has to catch the attention at a glance without being too busy. Some of my favorite logos utilize hidden images, twists that take on multiple images and optical illusions, basically two pictures given to interpretation of the viewer. The double design or optical play is there, but they don’t really see it at first.
Some are noticeable while others are almost invisible, but the brain catches it and tells the viewer that there is something about the design that makes it interesting.
The “C” in the Chic-fil-a is a great example of a simple text logo modified to create a visual appeal; looks like a chicken head. One that is a little harder to detect is the arrow in the FedEx logo. Another one that I like is the Baskin Robbins logo, it simply uses a B and R, but with clever use of font and color, you can see a “31” in the middle of it, which Baskin Robbins is known for having 31 flavors of icecream.
So when creating a logo, have something that causes makes it interesting and gives it that double entendre that makes it unique to the eye.
2. Color is Key
One of the most important considerations for logo design is in the colors that you use. This can’t be a happenstance decision, color theory plays an important role; colors have visual meaning. Plus, the colors you use can also play a big role in your brand. Planet Fitness, Coke...Every brand has its specific colors. Think about what colors best represent you and incorporate those colors into your logo.
The colors can bring life to the illustration and give further context to the shapes. That being said, remember that a good logo is versatile and must function well in grayscale.
Beyond a grayscale version, I like to also provide clients with a true single color version, using only black and negative space because not every situation is going to allow for a good grayscale look, so don’t rely solely on color, but make it part of your full design. An example is when H & R Block changed their logo to a green square. In color, it used their signature color green, but there was no grayscale to be had and the black and white was very lackluster.
Always consider what it is that the logo will be used for and whether or not the various use cases require different versions.
3. Stay Away from the Cliche
We’ve all seen them, every few years or so, some new trend or fad comes along in logo design, suddenly there is a market full of similar style signs all over the place. A particular font or graphics style takes the world by storm, so everyone has to use it. My background kept me abreast of upcoming designs and design trends and now it is kind of an occupational hazard as I find myself noticing this stuff without wanting to. Though I do suggest keeping your signage and appearance fresh, with logos I just hate it when designers repurpose someone else’s design just because it works for them at that point or they are trying to gain assimilated attraction.
Why not use a design that you actually thought up yourself rather than ripping off what everyone else is doing? Originality is what makes the other logo designs stand out and forces trends.
4. Make it Yours
The concept of ownership is definitely an important one that ties in with the previous tip.
If you are just following the herd and being a sheep to the current design trends, you are going to find that you hot new logo which is trending and popular now, will fade once that trend takes a dive and will look dull and cliche, you should, instead strive to create something that is uniquely recognizable, but uniquely yours as well.
As you are designing your logo, consider whether or not your design is too generic or unique. Is it likely that others will produce something like it? Often times when designing, your first idea is typically going to be your most generic, this is generally true for everyone even the professional designers. Rough sketch as many ideas as you can fi