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e s i g n at t e r s cr e at i n g lo g os
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MILK COMES WITH A DEFINITE
EXPIRATION DATE. LOGOS DO NOT. WHEN
YOU SELL A BRAND OWNER A FRESH
LOGO, MAKE SURE THAT PERSON KNOWS
HOW TO STORE IT PROPERLY. OR IT MAY
SOUR PREMATURELY.
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e s i g n at t e r s cr e at i n g lo g os
Essential Criteria
Set standards for your logo design work. Beyond that, know your client’s
and your creative community’s standards. Your work will be more grounded, and
you’ll project confi dence in the design philosophy to the client. Standards are
necessary, reaffi rming, and reassuring. It’s not so much what the specifi c stan-
dards are but simply their existence and consistent presence that is important.
There are three main design criteria by which to build standards: simplicity,
uniqueness, and metaphoric symbolism. Simplicity equals strength. The less
convoluted and the more direct a concept, the more memorable and effective
it is. Uniqueness establishes visual separation—helpful when your brand is vying
for attention in a crowded marketplace. Use of metaphor is a core element of
brand storytelling. The stronger the metaphor, the stronger the story. And the
stronger the story, the more memorable the logo.
In the end, all the standards you set will take aim at memorability. Simple is
memorable, metaphors are essentially memory aids, and uniqueness is notice-
able and then memorable. The higher and more resolute your standards for
these three, the more the audience should remember your client’s brand.
STAN DAR D
BY YOU R
LO G O
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“Everything should be made as simple
as possible but not simpler,” Albert
Einstein said. And he should know.
His theory of relativity manages to
summarize all existing matter into fi ve
simple characters.
Simplifi cation is pivotal to logo design.
Consider Google. It is building an
empire on a simplifi ed search process,
and its logo refl ects this strategy.
Because the logo is so simple, it
can be accessorized with everything
from holiday ornaments to specifi c
business sectors. The more simple,
the more intuitive, the more approach-
able. Simply stated, simplicity is a
force multiplier.
Simplify creatively. This memorable example
for a U.K.-based software systems builder
cleverly simplifi es by utilizing negative space.
E L L I O T T YO U N G
Simplicity is essential for many
reasons, the most important being
society’s current volume of messages.
Consumers are bombarded with
more and more information every
day. Because of this, designers of
all disciplines must simplify their
messages so they can be absorbed
before another one shoves them
aside. Logos marking almost every
piece of any given organization’s com-
munications or products constitute a
large percentage of this visual chaos.
It is essential that designers reduce a
logo design’s elements down to only
its most essential components.
Refi nement is the act of simplifying or
paring down. After a client accepts a
design, some may consider the work
completed. But, this is the moment
when another round of refi nement is
often required. It is best to leave it and
return later with fresh eyes, because
the chances of discovering unseen
redundancies increase. Diligence is
rewarded with uncluttered communi-
cation and clear end products.
Criteria 1: Simplicity
E I N STE I N WAS A MA JOR S I M P LETON
Convey dimension with simple structure.
This logo represents a prepaid card system
and elegantly achieves visual dimension.
S E G U R A , I N C .
Simplify without losing personality. This logo
for a U.K.–based paint-your-own pottery
retailer conveys a personal, craft-inspired
feel through simple, unique, visual gestures.
W O LF F O L I N S
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