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Things to think about when designing a logo

Here is a quick post which takes a look at some of the things I take into consideration when designing a logo, I’d say also looks at some of the considerations for print as well, plus it also contains what i think makes a good logo.

  1. How will the logo be used? I feel this is important as it probably encompasses alot of other considerations yet basically it is understanding what that end product is. I always like to take into account when designing a logo that its not just some letterhead, website, or extension to corporate stationary, yet could potentially end up on a mug, a t-shirt or an advertising board.
  2. Size matters? It certainly does as potentially the detail that you can get within a favicon (16px x 16px) which admittedly is an extreme example yet is different to what you get within an A1 advertising board (6733px x 10571px). I would always try to ascertain as to whether the logo has the same impact at different sizes ie is the text still legible when downsized, do you get the same detail?
  3. Resolution? Regardless of whether the logo is just to be used only on screen I would always advise producing the logo to print quality and that it is drawn using a vector package such as Illustrator. Usually I would try and produce work to at least 300dpi, if not 600dpi as it all depends on what various print companies require.
  4. Colour? I personally like to start designing a logo in just simple black and white to start with. The advantages of that is you’re producing a printable version without colour and also I think it helps to visualise the logo in a more raw state to see if the concept works. One thing I think that emphasises this point is if you study top brands ie McDonalds, Nike, Coca Cola, etc there logo can be seen with differences to colour or just general style yet is always the same design and that is what people recognise.
  5. How Many Colours? For any print work you should always design artwork with a CMYK colour palette and I would say this is the case when designing for a logo. Although more of a consideration for print it is important to understand how many colours are being used. I would say this from 2 perspectives as I think its important not to go too happy with colour ie such diversity and at the same time you have to understand the CMYK values and how many colours the artwork uses as well as this has cost implications.

These are just some points I’ve thought of yet I’m sure that probably I’ll think of more things at a later stage and follow up this post.


About The Author

Jacob Wyke is a web developer from the UK who makes complex things simple on the internet. He develops a batch image resizer for Mac OS X called ImageXY which you should try if you ever need to resize anything for the web.

You should also follow him on twitter.