Ideas by Kristen
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inspirABLE Logo (Case Study)

 
 
 
 

August 2018

Through roughly 3 years of graphic design freelancing, I have found a process that doesn’t often require revisions and generally leaves my client pleased with the brand they helped to build.

 
 

 

The Interview

 

Interviews often occur over Skype or a phone call. I ask the client a handful of open-ended questions to get to know the brand:

  1. Where do you think your logo will be used?

  2. Could you explain more about your company?

  3. Who are your company’s competitors?

  4. What audience are you trying to engage?


 

Research

 

I often work with small organizations, and can learn about the context of their field by looking at the branding of industry frontrunners and similarly small organizations. Having these ideas in mind keeps me on the correct path when sketching.


 

Sketches

 

After researching, I draw approximately 100 sketches which lets me get my first (and often worst) ideas out quickly. I determine sketches are worth developing based on one main concept: if a child can draw it, that’s a very good thing. At the end of the day, I want my logo to be repeatable to be more memorable to viewers.

Once I feel that there are at least three designs that stand out, I prepare to send them to the client by scanning the images into Photoshop and cleaning them up slightly.


 

Deliverable 1 and Client Decision

 

The first deliverable to the client is a slide deck that reiterates background information about the company and shows the three sketches for the client to choose from. By giving context for the company before showing the sketches, I have found that the client is more likely to think about what is best for their users rather than giving feedback based on personal likes and dislikes.


 

Iterating in Adobe Illustrator

 

After the client chooses a logo design they would like to develop, I scan the design into Illustrator and iterate upon it.

I explain to clients that this part of the process will be in black and white, no matter how much they insist upon color. One does not know whether their logo will always be used in color, so having a strong shape in black and white is vital.

 

 

Deliverable 2 and Client Decision

 

This deliverable adheres to the same premise as the first: remind the client of their original goals to ground them in the perspectives of their users and let them give feedback.

At this point, clients often ask to make small changes that may negatively affect the logo. I have a discussion with the client explaining how the proposed design will perform in the marketplace and help them come to a solution that works for them and their users.

 

 

Color and Final Deliverable

 

If the design receives client approval, the final step is to apply color to it. When choosing a color palette, I consider industry trends and how the client wants to be perceived against their competition. I also consider color psychology, readability, reproducibility, etc.

My final delivery to the client is a all possible permutations of the logo (icon only, inverted, transparent background, black and white, greyscale, RGB, CYMK) and a brand guide when necessary.

 

 

Mockups


Testimonial

Working with Kristen was wonderful.  We spent time discussing the vision for our logo, she took the time to understand the long term goals of our group and what we intend to deliver through our product and used that to develop ideas for a logo that fit our vision and goals.  She was incredibly transparent with her process and took us through a workflow of how she developed the logo that was incredibly in-tune.  The final product was AMAZING! Exactly what we would have envisioned for our logo and even taking it a step beyond.  I cannot speak enough to the talent that Kristen has and incredibly lucky to have worked with her and look forward to future work together.

— INSPIRABLE (UNOMA AKAMAGWUNA, MD)