In Nigeria, Africa, and all over the world, a lot of businesses called SMEs (Small to Medium Enterprises) are springing up. Marketers, PR Companies, Web Design Outfits, you name it. These companies or brands are typically small and usually have a staff of under 10 employees. This articles is for starting brands and individuals who recognize the need for a strong brand presence but may not have the capital to pay a professional.
Before we begin, let me stress that this tutorial assumes beginner-intermediate knowledge of Photoshop or other design software.
Logos can be broadly classified into five groups:
Brand Mark: The human mind can remember and associate a simple form. Brand marks do the work of a logo without any words. Without words, a bitten apple instantly relates to Apple, the green robot for Android, Colonel Sanders for KFC, the Swipe for Nike, the blue bird for Twitter or the M for MacDonalds.
Word Mark: Typically, this is the company’s name spelled out. This is especially good for SMEs as prospective clients not only see a cool design but also the name of the company. Word marks are also kinda sophisticated. Examples are Google, Bellanaija, Facebook, Coca-cola and Nestlé.
Letter Mark: The Letter Mark adds distinction and sophistication if the company name does not work spelled out. An example is Donna Karan New York DKNY (look how much cooler it is), Central News Network CNN, Hewlett Packard HP or ESPN.
Combo Mark: This is usually the company name spelled out and with additional artwork or even a brand mark. This is the best category for SMEs as they are both sophisticated and practical. Examples include KFC, Pepsi, BlackBerry.
Emblem: These can be artworks with the company name embedded in them. Think Superman, BMW, Ford, Paramount.
Now that we know the categories of logos, let us pick one. I’m using a brand called Needles Fashion House and I picked a Word Mark/Emblem for them. I’ll take you through a step wise process of how I arrived at the end result.
I created a 1000 x 1000 pixel image with 300 ppi resolution on Photoshop.
On the white background, I simply wrote out the text Needles using the Century Gothic font (it’s really cool and comes pre-installed on most computers) in black.
I created a needle vector (no pre-installed needle vector) and inserted it into my design. PS: You can always just download a needle vector online.
I duplicated my text layer and put the one below off.
I rasterized the text layer above and erased part of the n, part of the d and the l.
I duplicated my needle and used it to represent l, I combined it to also represent d and n.
I inserted the catch phrase.
I deleted the background layer and saved using None-interlaced PNG format.
Really easy right? All you need is a little practice and you’ll have a cool logo in no time.
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