How to design a logo in 10 steps

Designing a logo takes creativity of course but also some technique and ability to use logo design tools. No need to feel intimidated, you do not have to learn the whole design program just learn a few key motions and you will be on a roll. Tools you will need to complete this: pencil, pen, paper, computer, Adobe Illustrator, printer.

1. Word map

A word map is a visual organizer that promotes you to come up with words. This is especially helpful to come up with word’s that best describe your brand because a word map makes it easier to come up with associations.  Are you warm and fuzzy or sharp and sophisticated. Think of words that best describe you.

2. Pick a word (or two) 

Once you have a good lot of words ready Choose at least one  adjective and one noun.   You can pick a couple here.

3. Sketch images

Now that you have chose a word, two or three you can now start sketching out images that best represent those words. You may have two words that do not quote go together well. That’s okay, here is a good time to get creative!

4. Illustrate your logo 

Illustrate your drawing with cool typography  and  interesting shapes. Start in pencil first because you may do alot of erasing and redrawing in the first few drafts. Once you are happy with the concept begin to then fine tune the lines. Once you are sure you are 100% happy with the placement of your penciled lines, darken them in ink. Be sure to erase as much of the pencil as possible. The idea is to have a very clean, high contrast drawing.

5. Scan your drawing

Scan your drawing to the computer so you can manipulate it with design program.

6. Open your drawing in illustrator

Illustrator is the best tool for logo design because it allows you to make vector art, meaning that you can make designs that are infinitely scaleable without the loss of quality. If you notice your image is easily re create it with simple shapes skip steps 7-8 and use the shapes and get familiar with the Pathfinder tool.

7. Trace your image

Screen Shot 2014-12-09 at 4.25.18 PM

Once you open your drawing in illustrator select the image, then go to Window and select the Image Trace option.  Once you have the Image Trace window open, try cycling through to experiment with the many different tracing options. Be sure to select the preview option.

 

8. Expand your image

Once you are happy with the image trace settings, select Expand from the toolbar at the top. This will turn your scanned image into editable vectors that you will be able to manipulate.

 

9. Clean up your image

Most likely you will notice a lot of vector points which can make things messy. To quickly clean things up, select Object from the toolbar the Path and then select Simplify. Play with the settings so that the number of vector points are lighter but you do not jeopardize the shape of your drawing. Get friendly with the pen tool here. Also you can go to clean up pixels nicely with the smooth command.

simplify command illustrator

10. color & effects

To color your image select the vectors and use the color picker.

See Also: The Color Of  Your Logo Says A lot About Your Business

 

11. Save file 

Save file as a 300px logo and a 72 ppi logo for web. Also save an original illustrator for future use.

 

 

Now that you have your logo. please be sure to file a trademark to protect your design now.

 

 

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