Today I’d like to discuss the process of creating a logo for your company, and whether or not work with a graphic designer. The initial question to ask yourself is do you think you can tackle this problem on your own? Do you have the eye and the skill set, and hopefully some of what you’ve already learned may be beneficial. You may decide that it’s something you can do yourself or you create a draft to then share with a designer and have them build it for you. Or are you in the position to hire a design studio or a designer to create the identity for you. There’s a couple points I would like to bring up that I hope would be helpful.
Keep Everything Simple with Logos
I like to keep this process as simple as possible. Think about working with your designer the way you might hire a plumber. Do they show up on time? Do they have a good track record? Were they recommended by someone else? Did they take their shoes off before they tracked mud through your house? It should be a very simple experience. First and foremost a designer’s portfolio should resonate with you. Maybe you’ve seen some of their projects before, or you just love their aesthetic.
Keep Communication Lines Open
Ideally you would be able to get on the phone with them or have an email back and forth, and start a line of communication to determine if this is someone you want to work with or hire. A professional designer should be able to give you turnaround times, share their process, and get you a cost for creating a logo for you. I do feel obligated to offer a warning about crowdsourcing and online logo shops. Often the price point can be very enticing, the quality of work and often where the work is being generated is of question. When you engage with a designer or design studio, it is ideal to have a creative brief or some direction about where the company is headed and what you do, talk about competition, the general demographic, and hopefully you have examples of logos that you feel are successful or relevant to your company. This will give designers some visual parameters to work within when they develop the concepts for your identity. Ideally, when working with your designer, it will be made clear how many initial logo concepts they’ll be developing for you, how many rounds or revisions are included within the cost, and what kind of file formats you’ll be receiving for them when the project is done. It’s critical that lines of communications work both ways, both on your end and on their end, with updates, timelines, milestones, etc. That’s really the only way to ensure that you’re going to get the final product that you’re in love with.
About Aaron Belyea
Designer + Brander
Alphabet Arm Design
A self-taught artist, Aaron launched his graphic design career while performing in numerous bands in Boston for which he would create a visual image that complimented the band’s music. Aaron later honed his artistic talents at The Planetary Group overseeing the design department for this artist development company. His ability to successfully develop identities rooted in decisive visual concepts led to the establishment of his own studio in 2001. The company name comes from Aaron’s design moniker, “Alphabet Arm”, which refers to the alphabet tattoo wrapped around one of his arms. Aaron can often be found speaking at colleges and universities as well as teaching classes and presentations for various entrepreneur / start-up organizations. When not holding things down at the studio, he is often happiest spending time with his family, drinking beautiful coffees, riding his bike, playing music, watching football and eating avocados.