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From the early days in school, you love to play with colors and likes the drawing period. As you grew in age, so does your passion for design so much so that you decided to choose it as your career. With attention to detail, creativity and the ability to play around with colors, you are all set to become a great logo designer.
To make your dream come true, you join a logo design company. Unfortunately, you start moving away from the core principles of logo design and started following the latest logo design trends. Although this approach might work it can also backfire, therefore, it is important to stick to the basics when creating brand logos.
If you want to refresh some of the golden rules of logo design that you might have learned along the way then you are at the right place. Here are seven golden rules of logo design from logo design specialist David Airey that will turn you into a better logo designer.
1. Lay a Solid Foundation
Ask any logo designer and they will tell you that each project teaches them new things. Every client is different and every designer has his or her own distinct style for creating logos. To make sure that all the stakeholders stay on the same page, it is important to develop a consensus. That would happen when you ask the right questions from clients.
This will help you build a solid foundation for your logo design project and understand what the client exactly expects from you. Do in-depth research and lay the groundwork for your logo design projects, which you can build upon and create exceptional logo designs that both your clients and their audiences will love.
2. Sketch, Sketch, Sketch
With so much emphasis on digital tools, logo designers have almost forgotten how to use their sketchpad. Sometimes it is better for logo designers to ditch screens and mouse, pick up their pen and paper, and start sketching. Technically speaking, sketching makes it easier to play around with shapes and place them exactly where you want them. In addition to this, you can use your sketches as a prototype, showing your clients what your logo will eventually look like.
This also helps clients visualize the final version and request changes if necessary on the spot, saving you time and resources on rework. Paula Scher, a designer who created the CitiBank logo, drew the first sketch of CitiBank’s logo on a napkin during one of her initial meetings with CitiBank’s higher-ups. The sketch had the iconic umbrella over the evergreen wordmark. That sketch was later refined into what we know today as CitiBank’s logo. The sketch looks something like this.
3. Keep It Relevant
A logo can tell a lot about your brand. From its shape to its color to its typeface, it can create a perception about your brand in the mind of the viewer. That is why it is important that you pay attention to minor details. Choose logo elements that align with your brand personality. For instance, an elegant font will suit a high street brand than a lower end one. Make sure that your logo rationale aligns with the brand personality of the client’s brand.
The best example is Amazon’s logo. The arrow pointing from “a” to “z” shows that Amazon sells a complete range of products in its online store. McDonald’s logo is another great example of what a relevant logo looks like. The famous golden arches are a symbol depicting mammary glands, which is a sign of nutrition. This reflects that food at McDonald’s is nutritious and tasty.
4. Make Brand Recall Your Priority
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”—Leonardo Da Vinci
When it comes to logo design, simple is always better. The more complex your brand logo is, the harder it is for your customers to remember it. From a marketing standpoint, you want your customers to recognize your brand from its logo. This would only happen if you have a simple and clean logo design.
Just look at the Nike logo and you will understand what I am talking about. That black swoosh is widely popular around the globe and anyone can recognize Nike products just by seeing the black swoosh symbol on their products. Unlike other logos that have gone through an evolution, the Nike logo has maintained its original look.
5. Make It Stand Out
There are millions of brands in the world and every brand wants to stand out from the crowd. That is why every brand has their own unique logo. As a logo designer, you are expected to think outside the box, come up with unique logo ideas and convert them into physical equivalent as well. Instead of copying other brand logos, you should strive to differentiate your logos.
There is a common misconception prevalent among logo designers that you will have to create something out of this world to make your brand logo stand in a separate league. With minor tweaks and touches here and there, you can give a logo a truly unique look. Apple Inc’s iconic bitten apple logo is a great example of how logo designers can create novel logos with minimum effort.
6. Let Your Logo Speaks For Itself
Do not try too hard to show what a brand does with its logo as it would, in most cases, ruin it. It would be much better if you give your logo voice and let it speaks for itself. You do not have to use your brand name in your logos. Shell logo is the perfect example of how you can say everything with your brand logo without saying a single word.
7. Fill Colors At The End
When creating a logo, always create a black and white version of the logo first. This will help you stay laser-focused on logo idea and pay attention to logo elements instead of worrying about colors. Once the monochrome version of your logo is complete, then breathe new life into your logos by adding colors to it.
UPS logo illustrates this point perfectly. The black and white version was created initially by paying attention to details. Soon after the completion of the black and white logos, colors were added to it. It gives the UPS logo much more refined look. You can achieve the same refined look for your logo by following the same process.
Which golden rules of logo design do you adhere to when creating logo design? Feel free to share it with us in the comments section below.