Logos are not just “a nice drawing” which you use to introduce your brand to your public. You do not do this randomly and hoping for the best. Behind every logo design, there are research, work, time, effort and knowledge determining the best path for you to create/get a fantastic logo.
A logo may or may not involve the use of an existing font (typeface) or other graphic elements (icons, illustrations, textures, lines, patterns, other effects). The only thing a logo involves for sure is a color palette.
Now, regardless of the individual creative process, a particular designer uses, logos are usually created making use of the following:
- Composition, drawing, sketching, typography and all its knowledge.
- The utilization and understanding of graphic design applications.
- Research. A lot of it to achieve the “aha” moment (when you finally are in the flow state and get the “right” ideas).
- Experience and expertise in the design field. The more, the better.
Now, how is the creative process behind those four points stated above? How is the process behind logo creation?
The process for creating logos usually involves:
- A lot of research about the company (if it is not a new one), competitors, people behind the business, how the public has treated other similar brands, etc.
- A long talk with the people behind the idea, involving many questions such as why, how, when, where, what do you do, what do you want to achieve, etc.
- Knowing the company goals, what is its vision, what do they expect the logo to represent, and how do they want the brand to be seen by the public. (Designers are usually experts on this).
- Inspirational research involving finding anything similar done before (First for references, knowing what works and what doesn’t. Second for inspiration and achieving the flow state. And third, so you can do something original not created before, which could be a BIG problem).
- The incubation process, lasting from 24 hours to an infinite number of days/hours (again, it depends on the designer you hire/are).
- The “aha” moment, when you realize incubation is over, and all the ideas start showing up, “magically.”
- Lots of drafts and sketches until you find the “right” idea (or many different ideas of what could work).
- Picking a font or designing one from scratch (both processes involve loads of time and effort).
- Selecting “finalists.” Maybe 2, 3 or 4, depending on how many drafts and sketches you have created, and which ones work better and are according to your customer expectations.
- Picking up a color palette, relying on color psychology and color perception (investigating background, culture, the way in which people perceive colors in that specific target/culture), and always taking into account the customer/client’s appreciation.
- Making sure you are creating something that evokes emotion. The emotional public’s perception depends a lot on the relationship a specific person creates with the brand or the logo in particular. This means the brand needs to send a clear and consistent message.
In summary, for creating a logo, you need to take the time to “meet” with a particular idea, get the information, get inspiration, create the logo you want to show to people.
So, this is design and the process behind logo creation. What do you think?
Before I go, I must clarify, a logo is not the same that a brand.
The logo is the specific graphic element utilized to recognize a company quickly. A logo can come with a visual identity manual (ideally, it does come with it, but the decision, it’s up to the customer).
Meanwhile, a brand is much more a marketing thing. It’s essential as well because that’s how people decide how to feel about your logo (and all the rest of the brand that comes with it). A brand is everything involving public perception because it’s the way your company is differentiated from everyone else’s.