What is a logo for?
ESSENTIAL ! The logo is the visual identity of the company. The image that connects the company to its target.
Without great speech, just thanks to this little pictogram, the consumer identifies not only the name of the company but also its culture, its products, its image …
A good logo must convey a message. It forms the basis of all visual communication.
Its colours will be declined to determine the graphic charter taken on all media related to the brand (business cards, letterhead, flyer, website, commercial brochure).
Its forms will also serve as a reminder for communication campaigns.
In short, to put it simply, the logo is inseparable from marketing and communication plans.
It allows the general public to identify at a glance a company and its characteristics and make the link with all the values it conveys.
The logo has a very important impact on the public.
So much so that there is even a board game that is entirely dedicated to him. And in this game, the children are very strong. Proof that the image has a real impact and is fixed in the collective unconscious at a very young age.
The characteristics of a successful logo
Drawing a logo should not be left to chance. A good logotype must meet several essential criteria.
Before you start and create an image that faithfully represents a company, it is important to remember them to have them in mind when you make your first sketches.
- A logo must be unique
This is obviously the basis. The logo must be a pure creation. If it looks like another, it will be confusing and you may be accused of plagiarism. So yes, we show originality when we create a logo. A bit like when drawing your tattoo!
- A logo must be timeless
Watch out for fashion effects that can quickly pass. A logo must be designed to last in time. Although it can be modified if necessary when the business evolves, it must retain its graphic identity. When we build an image, it must be able to go through the years.
- A logo must be simple
A logo must be easily remembered. It is meant to be seen very quickly. The idea is to identify the company at a glance. A logo too complicated, with too many levels of readings or details will not fulfil its function.
- A logo must be legible in black and white
Because the logo of a company is not always reproduced in four-color process, it is important that it remains legible, even in black and white or in duotone. Be careful of gradients or shades of colours that may make the logo unusable in black and white.
- A logo must attract the eye
A logo should not go unnoticed. It must catch the eye. This is one of the biggest difficulties in creating a logo. Finding the colours and the graphics that will have an impact on the public is a central point of the thought process.
- A logo must adapt to all media
A logo must remain visible and readable whatever the medium on which it is integrated. Have you ever noticed at the bottom of the posters these logos printed in small size? Some stand out and are easily identifiable when others become non-existent.
How to create a logo?
Before entering the creative phase, you will have to think seriously about the main elements that will characterize the logo.
Then, place to the drawing to realize several versions and to compare them.
The reflection phase to design a logo
The specifications specify some important elements. It can be more or less detailed. In any case, it is important to look at the essential features of the business. It is also useful to take stock of the competition to stand out, without denying the visual codes related to the business sector for example.
Among the important points not to neglect to create a new visual identity:
- The color palette: each color has a meaning. The choice is therefore representative of the sector of activity in which the company operates (green is commonly used for ecology and nature for example). Color is also a great way to catch the eye, and convey a message,
- The integration of the name of the company in the logo: it is a choice to make. Some brands were able to transmit in their logo the identity and the name of the brand without mentioning it (like Apple’s apple),
- The integration or not of text with the logo: often several versions of the same logo are realized, with or without the baseline, according to their use. In all cases, the coherence of the whole must be respected,
- The format and reading direction: in length, height, round or square shape …
- The font: an original typography, even unique and well chosen, will transmit essential information on the company.
In communication agency, a brainstorming is never too much to ask the right questions, determine the axes of work and take the first arbitrations as in the drawing.
To find inspiration, it is also important to do some research and look into the world of graphic design.
First sketches of the logo
When we talk about the first sketches, it’s obviously because the creation phase begins with the pencil to put the first elements and rework them in several sketches. No need to know how to draw a face!
When it comes to creating a logo, be aware that the first idea is usually not the right one.
Why ? Simply because the first idea is often too conditioned, not enough original and therefore far from unique, as must be an original logo.
The first ideas that come to your mind are the same as those of most people. In other words, it is important to move away from it and refine its graphic design work to be original and unique.
To convey one or more messages in a single image is far from obvious. Every detail counts. And that’s the strength of a custom logo. Colors, typography, forms, text, negative spaces … Each element must serve a common message and best reflect the brand image of the company.
Harmony in graphic design includes the study of curves, proportions and symmetry. A bit like drawing a hand.
Some logos are directly inspired by the Fibonacci suite. The famous Golden Number, or divine proportion. This is the case of the logos of Apple, BP, Pepsi, or National Geographic.
During the creation phase, it is important to take a step back. Leave the creation aside and come back with a fresh eye. The project will mature naturally and new ideas will emerge.
Finalization of the logo
What makes the quality of a logo, except all the elements mentioned above, is also due to its overall harmony.
Graphic designers know it well to have studied many different models. We do not improvise graphic designer. The detail that will jump in the eyes of a professional will certainly escape a typical person, but if the harmony of the logo is not perfect, it will not attract the attention of many.
Whether you use a creative agency, a graphic studio or a freelance graphic designer to make a logo, one thing is certain: a professional will be able to explain the logo he has just created and justify his choices.
In all cases, a logo must be submitted to several people before being validated. Everyone will have a different perception, which will make the necessary adjustments.
What software to create a logo
The design of a logo cannot be improvised. Of course, you will find free logo design tool that offers the ability to easily create a logo in just a few clicks without any specific knowledge of graphics, or even to use a logo tool.
Is this really the right solution?
The logo of a company is made to last and make an impression. It is therefore essential to create a professional-quality logo to stand out. It is not enough to search among image libraries and add a name.
To create a logo, it is also to make sure that it can be declined in all the possible formats to be highlighted on all the media of communication. Creative people typically use Adobe Illustrator, the vector drawing software. Inkscape is also a professional software.
Gimp will suit if you are looking for a free graphic design software.
Photoshop is an image editing software that works with a grid and pixilation system that does not offer the same possibilities. Vector drawing software can reduce and enlarge images in high definition without losing quality.