Logo design process – A systematic way to design logos
The logo design process can be very time consuming as it is often quite difficult to come up with logo design ideas that match our clients’ requirements. There are so many different elements you need to consider when designing a logo including colour, typography, balance and symbolism to start with. So where do you start?
We’ll get started on designing their new logo using this systematic logo design process.
Once we’ve done some research and have a pretty good feel for what’s needed I create what’s called a “morphological matrix” to help us brainstorm ideas. This is my secret weapon when it comes to logo design, it’s a very powerful way to organise my thoughts and merge them together to create clever concepts.
A morphological matrix is basically a table with the logo design components in the left hand column and your ideas on the right. Try to come up with as many ideas, symbols and concepts as possible.
First thing’s first, we need to do some background research. A Google search to find your client’s competitors and have a look at their branding to get a feel for the style of logos used. It’s fine to be inspired by competitors but we want to make sure that our client’s logo design is unique so that it stands out from the others in some way.
It’s also important to do some background research on your client’s business.
Type of logo
Now that we’ve got some ideas in mind it’s time to figure out what type of logo is most appropriate for our client. There are three basic types of logos: Illustrative, Iconic and Typographic.
Illustrative logos are generally quite complex and graphically heavy and thus are usually not suitable for corporate logos. Due to their graphical complexity we need to also make sure that they scale down nicely. Here are some examples of illustrative logo designs.
Iconic logos consist of a symbol placed next to the logo text. These types of logos are quite powerful as they have a focus on strong typography while also giving the logo a unique look and feel with the use of symbols.
Typographic logos are the most traditional and simple types of logos consisting of typography only. These logos rely heavily on typographic style and are usually quite strong and bold. These logos are often used in more conservative and corporate industries such as finance and law.
Initial black and white sketches
Now we’re ready to start sketching the logo in black and white. It’s important for a logo design to work well in black and white, at both a large and small size, to ensure that it’s versatile enough to be stamped onto a myriad of promotional media .
You can sketch out your concepts on paper or on the computer, whichever works for you. Don’t complicate your concept. Try to keep balance in mind to ensure that the logo is weighted equally on both sides.
The typeface you choose for your logo design is one of the most important elements of the design as it could make or break your logo. Every typeface has a personality and we need to make sure that it reflects that of the business. If you want to ensure that your typeface is unique you can create your own or simply start with an existing one and change it to suit your needs. Search Free Fonts is a great resource to find the fonts you’re looking for.
Define colour scheme
Colour is a very important element of logo design as it very quickly conveys meaning and emotion. Our minds have strong subliminal responses to colour so we need to make sure that we use colour psychology appropriately in our logo design.
Put it all together
There are a few basic logo design principles to keep in mind when creating your logo. Make sure that you create your logo as a vector file using software such as Adobe Illustrator. Vector images can be scaled to any size without losing quality. You should also use CMYK colour mode, this can be set when you create your new file in Illustrator.
Once you’ve finished creating your logo it’s also a good idea to outline fonts to ensure that your file is not font-dependent. Finally check the balance of your design by flipping the logo upside down, it should still look balanced upside down. Once you’re happy with your design simply save it and you’re done.