How NOT to Create a Logo

After all the research and trial and errors I’ve been going through, I’ve made some observations about creating a logo.

These are some things to keep in mind:

1.  I say this first because I really mean it:  Unless you are making a logo for an anime/manga related project, DO NOT INCLUDE MANGA DRAWINGS IN THE LOGO. DO NOT. Not to be cruel, but especially don’t if your work is of poor quality.Image

2.  Personal tastes are a part of life, but you shouldn’t let them completely override your design. The client is important, and while you are the designer in charge of making smart aesthetic decisions, their opinion still matters.

3.  Font and typeface choices are IMPORTANT! Do not choose “Rosewood STD Regular” or the dreaded “Comic Sans” to show you’re fun and creative. Nobody wants to see those, and something like “Rosewood”  is difficult to read from a distance. If you are creating a logo for a professional environment (or any really), keep that in mind. Your logo will reflect the purpose and personality of the company, so don’t make your clients look bad! Very often, simpler is better.

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4.  Similar to the typeface rule, clip art and word art are generally a no-go. Otherwise, you could end up with this:

I do not believe any further explanation is needed.

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5.  Avoid overcrowding your logos! They are made to be instantly recognizable images and are supposed to be easily legible (from close up and a distance). If too much detail is included the point will get lost, and all most people will see is a blob of color and lines.

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6.  Color choice. Make wise color decisions! You should avoid choosing colors simply because you like them. There has to be thought behind all of a designer’s choices. Very often it’s good to limit the number of colors in a logo as well. I’m sure there are exceptions, but if you have every color in the rainbow present, it will probably overcrowd or overcomplicate it. Below is an example of an exception to this rule. Choosing a myriad of over saturated colors can cause problems as well, as seen above.

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7.  As demonstrated earlier, don’t only give your client one option, but also don’t berate them with too many. My general go-to is usually between 3-6 choices. Even if you think you just created the best logo in the entire world, Frank might not like your Hotdog logo.

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8.  And finally, you should avoid scoffing off feedback or suggestions from your client! Make smart aesthetic choices, but nobody knows the company or organization better than the creators/owners! Use their feedback as the base. Conversely, don’t let your client run the entire operation. You were hired because you possess skills HE/SHE doesn’t have. Use them to your benefit. If something goes wrong with the logo’s design late in the process you’re going to be the one held accountable. Be smart!

****Now, I feel I should provide a bit of a disclaimer here. I’m not saying I am an absolute professional for creating logos and brands. No, if anyone reading this wants to hear and see works from a professional, I recommend designers such as Paul Rand, Paula Scher, or Bob Wolf. In fact, here is a link to a list of iconic logo designers for anyone who is interested in looking them up: http://www.logosdesigners.com/

My point is, part of what I’m focusing on in this blog is my own personal journey through creating the logo myself. I’ve created a couple before, but this list is based not just around logos themselves, but general aesthetic and artistic rules people should keep in mind, as well as previous experiences I’ve had working on commissions for people. With that in mind, I shall end this post!

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