Those billboards hanging high up, with a bunch of brand logos on that somehow stick to our minds from the first glance. Thought about the creation process behind? Well, if you’re a designer, of course, you have. And this article is exactly for you. Ok, so you just got a job: creating a logo for a new brand. Do you have your own thought process? What crazy things do you do? We know you might get stuck from time to time.
Everyone’s process is different: find yours
There’s no one way about it: you don’t stand at a bus stop waiting for number 37 to come by, get on it, pay for your ride, then arrive at your destination and get off. Creating a logo is all about creativity, the bubbles that float around in your mind uncoordinated creating something that’s out of space. And just like any work that requires creativity, you can’t put a timeline on crafting a logo. And you can’t really have a set flow. Or can you? Let’s check these expert advice on creating dope logos from Ucraft designers.
Use your hands: leave everything on paper
Sona, our designer with a soul of an artist, suggests her unique steps to creating an eye-catching logo. The first time she hears about the company, what it does, its name and meets the owner, some associations rush through her head: and she already has an idea. But before rushing to conclusions, she starts with research: hacks every Dribble, Pinterest and Medium account related to the field, sees what others are doing and gathers ideas. Research is very important: it’s not about copying, it’s about getting inspired. What Sona does next? Well, she sleeps on it.
“Let your brain digest it all. In the morning, you’ll wake up with some fresh ideas, even cooler than the night before,” says Sona.
In the morning, she takes a pencil and lets her ideas fall on paper. That’s what works for her: she’s got to use her hands, draw down some sketches, feel the design with the tips of her fingers. After she’s done with her sketches and has an overall idea of what the logo is going to look like, she takes the shapes and makes them all perfect in Photoshop or Illustrator. Have you tried her way? Also, every designer has a style. To conclude Sona’s in a sentence, she’d say:
“Good design is as little design as possible.”
Write down words associated with the brand’s name
The next stop: creating a new logo for an established shoe brand. For starters, goes on our talented Tatev, you write down all the words associated with shoes. There are the laces, heels, different materials, everything that the shoe is made of. You could even go deeper and think about the feelings clients will have when wearing the shoes and write down those too.
After you’re done, take the icons of those words and try to mix them up: cut some, rotate, add colors, remove the colors, do all those crazy things that come to mind. At the end, you’ll have something very unique only your brain could think of. And that way, your logo will become very hard to be “stolen” from you. Tatev brings the example of Nike’s logo: at the beginning, the vision behind the logo was a bird, as if people wearing Nike shoes can fly. Deep, right? Don’t forget to put a meaning behind the logo you create.
Writing down words associated with the brand also helps when you’re stuck and have no idea. Creating a logo might come hard at those times. But writing down words is so easy, right? After you do it, a strong force of creativity will hit you in the head and you’ll start crafting.
“But remember not to force yourself too hard. You got to wait for that muse. Otherwise, you’ll just end up with a logo you hate.”
Another thing that Tatev mentions, is that at the end of the day she gives 3 final options to the client. The first one is what she likes best. The other 2 are for the client because she already has an idea of what kind of logo the client would want. She also asks the client if they have any color preferences. If not, she does what her heart wants.
To sum it all up, Tatev gives a wise advice:
“Create something that you’ll be proud of. And even if the client has a totally different taste and style, find the perfect mix of what you like and what the client will like. So that when one day someone says, did you create this logo, you won’t be ashamed! And make the client trust you, otherwise, they won’t like the logo you create.”
And there’s a way of showing the final look of the logo to the client. If you just show it on a piece of paper, they might not like it: because they can’t really imagine it on their products. But when you create mockups with your client's products with the logo, it’s a way of lying to the client. Tatev says, that when a client sees the logo on their product, most of the time they fall in love with it. And that’s the right way of showcasing a logo. See?
Feel the colors from your first thought
We’ve got this designer with extrasensory perceptions, Nana, who has her own ways about everything. Besides the weird dreams she has and the spiritual things she feels, she also creates magical designs. Let’s see what she’s got to say about creating logos.
“The mind of a designer is kind of crazy. There’s no right or wrong way of thinking. And most of the time, it all depends on the mood.”
Nana usually starts with deciding on a color. And when she meets the client for the first time, talks to them, gets to know the brand, she can feel the color in her mind. And from there on, she closes herself from the world and gets her hands dirty with designing. Thinks of a specific form, gives the logo a body, a certain shape, starts editing, mixing the colors she already has in mind.
Typographic logos come to help when you’re stuck!
For our “sweet like a lemon” designer Kristina, the logo is the face of a business. Before she starts creating the logo, she needs to understand all the goals the visual has to have in itself.
“No bad logo: there are just logos that were used wrongly or not at the right place. Even a logo with stretched typography can look nice if you’re a, let’s say, Typography Breaking Rules Company.”
Kristina’s number one advice would be to:
“Get your head in the topic so deep you forget about the rest of the world. After that, let yourself loose: ideas will start floating. Remember: the first idea you get has already or will hit about 80% of other designers. So, the first thought is very dangerous, doesn’t matter how much you like it.”
When you have no idea for a logo and your heart starts beating fast every time you think about creating it, it’s better to turn to creating a Typographic logo. And these types of logos usually go with any kind of brand: 88% of the times they turn out to be very unique. Not to mention, that they show the idea of your brand from the first glance. See this logo of 34 Business Center?
It’s as if the logo talks to your client, and says, “Hi, I’m 34 Business Center!” And what follows next is a nicely put slogan, telling more about what the brand does.
Your logo has to have an identity: a meaning behind it
We’ve also got this passionate designer, Emma. She’s pretty emotional, that’s why her logos and designs are different from the rest: she puts everything she’s got into them.
“The most important thing in creating a logo is giving it an identity. Your logo is useless if it doesn’t have a deep meaning behind.”
And there’s nothing else to add. However, there’s something interesting about logo colors:
“If the client has not been very specific about colors, try and create your logo in a couple of different variations of a color palette. And then let them choose the one they can’t help but make theirs.”
Also, if you’re thinking about taking into consideration the logo creation trends that are hot at the moment, stop for a second and think. Do they work for your logo? If yes, then use them. But only because they work for your specific logo, and not because everyone else is using them at the moment.
Get inspired by the weirdest things
Mher, the oldest one and the craziest one, is a man living in the moment. Everything can happen at the right moment, he believes. So his answer was very simple. He does his research in the field of the company he needs to create a logo for. After, he just lets everything go and goes by his day.
Then suddenly, ideas born from the simplest things: streets lights changing from green to red, a straw making a sound when there’s almost no coffee left in a cup, someone laughing too hard. He also believes that:
“The quantity doesn’t matter: you don’t have to create too many variations of logos for the client to choose from. In fact, you might confuse your clients and they might not be able to choose any. So, create something that inspires you. And always take into consideration the Golden Grid. That way your logo will be timeless.”
Check out this logo by Mher for Nightmoods: a leather bags company.
Typesetting: get fancy with it
A new member of Ucraft designers, Levon, suggests playing around with fonts. However, he says:
“First you should choose a classic font. Most of the time your logo looks timeless with those fonts and you have already have that feeling inside shouting that you’re done.”
A great example here is the logo of Target: simply typeset in Helvetica Neue. But if you’d like to learn about the potential of your logo, type its name in different fonts. Playing with lowercases and uppercases might trigger some dope ideas, too.
Now that you have it all laid out in front of you, you’ll get a feel of what works best. Moving forward, add an icon. What Levon likes to do is overlaying a letter from the logo name. All that’s left to do is adding colors. From the million ways out there of choosing colors, he suggests turning to Color Claim. And you’re done!
Do you think these tricks our designers suggested will help you out in the future? Well, all we wanted was to trigger some creative thoughts in your brain. We know how one might get stuck. And if you’re ready to create your logo, go ahead and try out our logo maker: it’s super easy and you can download your logo for free!