How to create a modern and creative logo?
The design of a logo will be different each time, depending on the overall identity of the brand. Each identity project is unique. Everyone has their own problems to overcome and challenges to conquer. But you still need to approach each brief in a similar way: I developed a work process that allows for maximum creativity and productivity to create a killer Logo.
This tutorial will guide you through the main stages of creating a new identity for the ultra-modern HabiGym. I will show you how this identity was conceived, explaining each stage of the process from ideas born to final presentation. In addition to demonstrating some of the essential tools and skills you can learn to help optimize your Illustrator workflow, I’ll also share some of the best rules of thumb for working smarter.
Not only will this guide help you with your own identity commissions, it also contains helpful tips and advice on how best to present your vision to the client.
If you’re in the area and want to learn more about the great logo design process, we’ve covered everything you need to know in our complete guide to logo design.
Original and creative logo (killer logo) process
01. Always start on paper.
Everyone knows that you have to start with a plan, but when the deadlines are looming, it is very easy to forget this stage, no. An important part of identity design involves solving a problem with a concept. For many, this happens much more fluidly on paper, as their mind bounces off everything they draw.
02. Mobile scanner
If you have a scanner, use it for the best results. If you don’t have one handy, take photos of your sketches. You can then use them as guides for digital recreation. When it comes to logos, precision is essential. Therefore, Live Trace must be abandoned and the work must be done manually.
03. Practice makes perfect.
The Pen tool is probably the most widely used, but it is still one of the most difficult to master. It is a very powerful tool and learning it will not only benefit your ability to create images in Illustrator, but the skills you acquire will also augment any Photoshop Pen work you do.
04. Use the Shapes panel.
Create this logo by combining rectangles using the Rectangle Tool. When constructing the vectors, try using the Shape panel for better precision. Hold down the Shift key to draw shapes with equal proportions. Select any item, and its width and height are displayed in the control bar. You can write in sizes here too.
05. Duplicate elements and combine.
To compare variants, duplicate a master copy for editing (press and hold the Alt key and drag). Create shapes to align objects and use Smart Guides (View> Smart Guides). Use the Pathfinder tool to combine shapes and create new ones. You can combine rectangles to make element ‘H’: select both elements and hit Combine.
06. Set type
Modify the tracking and kerning of words to change the tone of a logo. Add characters to the logo by opening the shapes in the native paths that make up the letters, altering the paths of each letter directly to make their type unique. To quickly convert the font outlines (paths) hit Command / Ctrl + Shift O .
07. Keep the changes subtle.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to rearrange the anchor points and alter the appearance of the letters. Keep changes small and subtle. Careful scale of logo branding with type is crucial to achieving cohesion between the two. Hold down the Shift key to keep everything in proportion as you scale items up and down.
08. Time to add color.
In CS4 and higher, you can integrate the Adobe Kuler application into your workspace to view color palettes. Go to Window> Extensions> Kuler. Try to avoid gradients on logos, but don’t take that as an absolute rule of thumb. Press Cmd / Ctrl + F9 to access the Gradient dialog box. Try the logo in a variety of background colors and shapes.
09. Create delivery templates
Go to File> Save As> Illustrator Template. Choose fonts that work well with the brand. Create style guides for designs – Add CMYK color breakouts, Hex codes or Pantone codes and font names – this is useful for designers and ensures branding consistency. He also gives examples of the brand on various materials.
Kyle Wilkinson is creative director and co-owner of the studio British DMSQD . This article originally appeared in Computer Arts magazine. Subscribe to Computer Arts .