Logo Design Case Study
Introduction: In this case study I will be looking into how graphic design companies design logosand also the development process that goes into designing logos. I chose to take a look into this area of graphic design as it is the one that I am mostly passionate about. I will look at several companies and break down each step in to desgning a logo that will represent a company for times to come. A professionally managed visual identity: supports and projects in stitu tional cohesi on and ef f i ci ency; discern from other organisations; facilitates the building of reputation through the association of achievements and values to the organisation; and facilitates consistency within key areas of design.
Vivid Ways is a blog focusing on the topic of personal development and colourful living, it aims to inspire and encourage readers through ideas and tips on how to live an amazing life. After some initial correspondence with the client via email he had fleshed out some thoughts on the style of the logo and what values would be presented through it. Examples of a previous design were supplied, and it was mentioned that the sans-serif font used was ideal. One other requirement was that the logo should use a separate graphic element along with the Vivid Ways wording. Otherwise, there was creative freedom surrounding the design.
He started work sketching out ideas for the logo, the main focus for the graphic of the logo was to display the letters “V” and “W” in a creative way that could be seen as an abstract mark, but also recognisable as the letters under closer inspection. After conducting a little research, it occurred to him that the ribbon is a widely recognised symbol of life, so he then drew up a ribbon that flowed and twisted into the shapes of letters “V” and “W”. The two styles that stood out were the straight/folded effect and the smooth/ curling version, both of which represented the same message but in different visual styles.
The logo started out as a few sketches, then scanned into Adobe Illustator. He then started to trace the outline of the logo.
With the wave then being made up of individual shapes, Gradient colour fills could then be added. The range started with blue, which faded to purple, to red, to orange, to yellow, to green and back to blue.
More advanced outlines of the logo.
He then edited the paths and joined in specific places to make solid shapes.
To give the three dimensional impression, extra black was added to the areas of the ribbon that spiralled over, giving the impression that a soft shadow was being cast. This last touch is what really helps the graphic stand out.
The final logo was then developed into a few secondary variations such as being reversed out of a dark background, and reproduced using a single colour for use in specific circumstances. Experiments were conducted on the appropriate type-styles. During the project commencement an example of a font was given, which he managed to identify as Century Gothic. Being a standard Windows font, I decided to compare it to two classics with similar letterforms: Avant Garde and Futura. He was expecting to go ahead with Avant Garde, but when placed side by side Century Gothic actually looked the nicest. I felt the letter S of Avant Garde and Futura was way too thin for the logo.
The chosen font was also laid out. This was edited slightly by reducing the tracking and carefully kerning the letters to give equal spacing on either side. The gap between the words was closed up slightly to pull the words into more of a combined mark.
The logo graphic and type were then combined, the flowing line of the graphic seemed to fit quite well into the natural shape of the text when sat in a vertical layout.
Lions & Lambs Media Group The brief was simple yet complicated at the same time. The client wanted to create an image that combined the head of a lion and a lamb. Here is the image of the inspirtions used for the logo design below.
Here is an image of the initial sketches developed in Adobe Illustrator. The designer made three versions because at first the lamb wasnt recognisable so he then simplfied it to make it clearer.
Here is an image of some early development work. Several iterations were sketched to test out the combination. It was important that both images be easy to recognise, with more emphasis on the lion.
Here is the final outcome of the logo. The black background really helps to emphasise on the fleece of the lamb.
4Spots Interactive agency 4Spots, based in Bahrain, commissioned us to rebrand their identity to be in line with their new mantra...’facilitate connections’.
This is the final logo placed on black and white backgrounds. The obvious inspiration for this project was studying the alignment and positioning of four spots to help communicate the brand name.
A connection is made. The emphasis surrounding the whole brand idea is that 4Spots ‘faciliate connections’. This is relayed in the brand mark.
The style of the brand mark was carried through to application upon the rest of the brand collateral. The following brand element formed the basis for the artwork.
Here is the final logo in examples of the brand element applied and the logo design in use.
Tim Mullin Properties A secondary colour scheme was selected to support the main theme.
An up-and-coming realtor based in Hollywood needed a new identity.
It was important to convey that the houses Tim sells are luxurious and desireable. They looked at images from the surrounding areas of Hollywood for inspiration.
They decided to put a focus upon ‘signature homes’, meaning that each property is a one of a kind yet conforms to the luxurious qualities of Tim’s portfolio. A wordmark featuring Tim’s initials which subliminaly spelt out the full name was created. Purple was chosen as the main brand colour as a symbol of wealth.
Examples of the wordmark and assisting typography in use on business card designs.
Conclusion: To conclude this case study, I believe that visual identity plays a major role in the world of graphic design. With out it we would not be able to recognize and distinguise companies and busniesses. Visual identity is not optional; it is something every organisation has. What is optional is whether it is neglected, to the detriment of the organisation, or managed and developed so as to become an asset.