Today I have the pleasure of having Jayme Montoya of Lucid Graphic Design guest blog – and teach all of us what we should look for in a logo and logo designer.
I’m a graphic designer who loves portrait photography, cookie dough ice cream, the color pink, my family, the fall season, long earrings, cozy sweaters, wearing no socks, the ocean, vampire novels, gummy candy, trashy reality TV, good design, Boise State Broncos, high heels, anything pumpkin, smoky eyes, my 85mm lens, relaxed portraits, natural light, fun locations and sometimes crazy poses.
I attended Boise State University in Boise, Idaho for graphic design. For the past 4 years I have worked as an in house graphic designer and marketing professional for a large law firm in Boise. While attending BSU, I took fine art photography and realized my love for portrait photography. I combined the two into a side business in January 08, specializing in small business brand identity, print design & portrait photography.
I currently live in the great state of Idaho (seriously, it’s really great) with my husband and super cool (she also loves pink) 2.5 year old daughter.
5 things to look for in a logo/logo designer:
First, thank you Jodi for inviting me to guest blog for your readers here at MCP Actions Blog! I’m delighted.
I get asked quite a bit what someone should look for when finding a designer to do a logo for them and/or what they should strive for in a logo, so I’ve put together 5 things that I feel as a brand identity designer, are important in a businesses logo search.
1. Your style.
2. Keep it simple.
1. Your style. You should strive to find a designer that is going to mesh well with your own business style. A designer thats work specializes in shabby chic may not give you the best concepts for your sleek, modern company. Ideally a designer should be able design multiple styles but that is not always the case, so just stick with one that best suits your business style. Do not compromise your style if your designer is not giving you the product you desire, this is your company’s identity and should not be taken lightly, so let the designer know if the design is not what you had in mind. Designers are pretty thick skinned and are generally nice people so they’ll work with you to get it right for your business.
2. Keep it simple. You want a logo that will portray its message quickly and seamlessly. Some of the most recognizable logos are the simplest design and in one quick glance you know exactly what they mean/who they are.
3. Versatility. A logo should always work in black & white first before adding any color to it. A logo that works well in black & white (not grayscale) and can be resized without issue is in the right step of being good design. Your logo should be ready to appear in any form of marketing that you need it to. For example, a good logo will work on a large billboard, small on a business card, without color in a newspaper and on the screen of your iPhone.
4. Colors. Really choose your colors wisely and think about what they mean. Are they trendy or classic? In ten years will you still have the same colors or will they be outdated causing expensive changes throughout your company? Color provokes many different feelings so you want to take your choice of color into this consideration also. A spa related company is not going to evoke a relaxing feeling with neon pink & black, their color choice should included calming colors such as aqua, cream or blue for example. It is also important to consider your costs. The more colors you have, the more expensive it is to print. So color also ties back to keeping it simple!
5. Vector. Vector. Vector! Vector is not only better it is the only way a logo should be created. Photoshop is resolution based so logos created in Photoshop cannot be resized without sacrificing image quality. Vector images are independent of resolution therefore they can be resized without problems. As I mentioned in versatility, good logo design needs to be versatile. A vector based logo can be scaled down for use in a business card and scaled up to be used on a billboard. Your logo designer should always provide you with an Illustrator file (EPS) of your logo…keep this native file safe and sound!
A few more tips:
1. Comic sans, gradients & drop shadows are the devil…run far away.
2. Sign a contract…always!
3. If a design brief is not supplied ask for one…it helps the designer know where you are at & wanting to be.
4. Only use one space after punctuation, not two (not related to logo design just a pet peeve, wink).
Questions? Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit my site at lucidgraphicdesign.com/blog. Happy branding!