How to think like a professional graphic designer and create the perfect logo

In some of our previous articles, we’ve talked a bit about professional graphic designers. And more specifically, we recently touched on the topic of what you can expect from a graphic designer you hire, versus what you can expect from logo design software and the benefits of doing so. Versus hiring a professional graphic designer.

There are advantages to employing a graphic designer. You hire someone for your project who has studied graphics, design, and logo creation. They have all the basics in color theory, composition, graphic design trends, and know how to visually communicate specific ideas while being effective. It’s for all of these reasons that hiring a professional logo designer can be very expensive: you are paying for expertise and years of experience making graphics that work well. Luckily, you can save all that money and still get away with a great logo, just by learning how to think like a graphic designer yourself!

A professional will look at a logo differently than an average person. When we look at a logo, most of the time we’re just going to think ‘it’s pretty’ or ‘it’s ugly’, or we might think it’s a good representation of that company, or not. When a graphic designer envisions a logo, he or she carefully looks at the colors of the brand that that logo represents. They examine the shapes of the logo and how they complement or contrast with the fonts chosen by the brand. They wonder how this logo would look in black and white and how it would appear on a computer screen, or in print. More often than not, they imagine how they would have created a better logo if they had been given the design.

So, if you have decided to make your own logo using logo maker software, take some time to learn how to think about your logo the professional way! It won’t cost you anything but can pay you a lot, once you get a beautiful, very professional looking logo that showcases your brand.

Learn the fundamentals of logo design yourself

This learning will start by learning how to separate the elements present in each logo. We’ve published articles on the fundamentals of logo design, so go read them if you haven’t already, to get started:
The meaning of colors and their use in the design of a brand identity
The 30 best typefaces to create a dazzling logo
The meaning of geometric shapes in logo design
It is also important to familiarize yourself with different types of logos, so that you can easily identify them when you come across them.
As you learn how graphic designers use colors, fonts, and geometric shapes to communicate a brand’s values ​​through a logo, you will see how central this topic is to brand identity. When you create a logo, you bring together everything that defines your business, such as the price range of your products, your target customers, your position within that industry, and even your geographic position: and all that, you put it in. a picture.

The first step in learning how to critically analyze a logo, and to be able to think like a professional graphic designer, is to learn how graphic choices communicate and reflect the values ​​of a brand. After reviewing how these graphic elements work, an effective exercise that you can do is to try and recreate logos for brands yourself. Invent two or three hypothetical brands, such as a modern plumbing company that targets high-ethical customers, a dog-sitting and walking business that differentiates itself by providing moments of play and socialization with other dogs during the holidays. Walks. Then open our logo maker and try to make your own logos for these brands.

Guess a brand’s goals just by analyzing its logo

Once you have created a logo or two for practice, you will have a better overall understanding of the thought path of this creative process, in order to create an effective logo. Now you can challenge yourself by looking at the problem from the other side: you can have fun guessing if the logos you come across every day effectively communicate their brand identity and values.

The next time you go shopping, take a look at the logos around you. For example, look at the McDonald’s logo. The two yellow arches are instantly recognizable all over the world. What does this tell you about the McDonald’s brand?

They are not expensive. They offer practical food, and not healthy. This food is not only convenient, it is also relatively simple and created to induce a dopamine surge thanks to fat and salt: not really a foodie’s delight. And if you have kids, McDonald’s is the perfect place to order a quick family meal.

Now, repurposing your knowledge of how colors, shapes, and fonts all work together in a logo, take a look at how McDonald’s communicates the values ​​we just listed, just through their logo.

They chose yellow, a playful color, full of life and energy. The arches of the M are rounded, not pointed: it is more attractive and friendly. The logo itself is simple: two colors and a few lines. Easy at first.

Now compare this communication with the Brooks Brothers brand

Looking at the police, the logo image, how do you think Brooks Brothers wants to be seen by the world?
Compare what these logos tell you about the brands they represent, versus what you thought of these brands before you analyzed their logo in this way. Ask your friends for their opinion of certain brands, and read reviews online to see if what you think of these brands meets the general consensus. Sometimes it will, and sometimes not. Some logos do not effectively communicate the values ​​of the brand they represent, and there are a few reasons for this.

Sometimes a logo represented its brand well, but times have changed and the brand has taken a different direction; the logo therefore becomes obsolete. When this is the case, the brand may choose to modernize its image to better reflect reality, by updating its logo or by initiating a complete overhaul.

Another reason that a logo may not communicate effectively about a brand identity is that the brand is from a foreign country, and therefore the logo was designed to match that country’s culture. . For example, the color red is associated with luck in China. In South Africa, red is associated with mourning. For a Western audience, red will not communicate luck, rather green: in the West, green is associated with money and this evokes the idea of ​​winning money in the lottery for example, or other windfall. In the genre.

This does not mean that these logos are bad, but that they probably should have been modified to suit an international audience when the brand entered new markets. When designing your logo, take the time to understand the cultural associations that everyone will make in each market in which you operate; think carefully about the colors and images you envision. By focusing on a single market, you may find yourself designing a logo that says something totally different within another culture.

Finally, the most obvious reason why a logo may be unsuitable is that it is not very good. Perhaps the color was chosen incorrectly for this brand, or the font clashes with the rest of the image. Also, maybe this logo is too generic and trite for anyone to remember for more than a few seconds. If you train yourself to think like a graphic designer, you will instantly spot these logos and know why they are bad logos.

Knowing how to recognize good logos when you see them

In a lot of cases, it is not clear what makes a logo well designed, what makes it so great. This is because professional graphic designers know how to subtly communicate the values ​​of a brand through graphic choices. Take for example the Disney logo.

We all know him by heart. We can even see him with his eyes closed. What makes the Disney logo so effective?

Well, let’s first ask what it communicates. How would you define Disney? Is it entertainment? Is it for the whole family? It’s clean? Is it a juggernaut of modern culture?

Let’s focus on just one thing that Disney has made its hallmark of: it’s for the whole family. There are plenty of movie studios out there today, but the one that automatically comes to mind for parents and caregivers when it comes to quality and affordability at any age is Disney. So how come this weird D that looks like an upside down G communicates all of this?

It’s handwriting graphics, just like the entire logo. Using a logo that looks like its handwritten makes it feel personal and affectionate, as Disney Studios are among the most gigantic companies in the world. The public has the impression of being close to the brand, and they feel put at ease. We have the impression that we can count on Disney to give us what it promises: indisputable entertainment for the whole family.

When you analyze a logo, break down each of its parts. Observe the font, how the colors complement or contrast with each other, look at the image as a whole, how the geometric shapes work with each other, and ask yourself if the logo is minimalist, or not. This is how a professional logo designer will look at a logo. And then, when you design your own logo, think about what you may have noticed in the other logos. And even better: go over the notes you have taken! Learning how to think as a professional graphic designer takes practice, and the best way to do it is to still observe, break down and analyze logos, so that you can create your own.

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