Six Logo Design Mistakes That Can Spoil a Designer’s Career

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Unlike brochure designers who play with colors and images only, graphic designers have to create a logo by using colors, fonts and symbols intelligently. The brand value of a company depends on the visual appeal of its emblem. If you are a graphic designer and have forayed into the field of logo design very recently, here are a few mistakes you must avoid while designing a brand insignia.

Highly complex: The logo will be used in newspaper ads, letterheads, billboards and many other places. The client will scale it as per his requirement and too many details can cause trouble during scaling. If a image contains too much text and multiple symbols, then when it is squeezed, the letters may become illegible. Therefore, it’s absolutely necessary to keep the design simple.

Font that does not match with the brand persona: Every font has a character of its own and must be chosen carefully while designing a font-based logo. For example, if you are designing the insignia of an IT company, you should use sans serif font to emphasize the corporate look. On the other hand, if it’s a toy maker company, you can use a handwritten playful font to attract the adolescent customers. However, if you do the exact opposite, target customers won’t even take you seriously.

Using stock images: This is the worst mistake you can make. Brochure designers often include stock art in their layouts to convey a message to the target consumers, but the same rule does not apply to logo design. A logo must be unique and the moment you include stock art in an emblem, it loses its uniqueness. Stock images can be used by anyone and thus, your client’s competitor can easily incorporate it in his emblem to damage your client’s brand identity. Therefore, always draw the symbols or graphics for every logo you create.

Designing in raster format: A logo should be designed using software like Adobe Illustrator that can produce graphics in vector format. A vector graphic is easily scalable. You can make it as large as you want to without losing any detail, but raster graphics get pixilated when enlarged.

Giving too much emphasis on colors: There is no doubt that a logo needs to be colorful, but if the logo loses its appeal without the colors, that is a serious problem. A logo can be posted in monochrome format if necessary, and if it fails to impress viewers or they simply don’t recognize the brand, it’s your failure as a graphic designer. Therefore, always create the main design in black and white format, and then add colors to make sure it will look perfect even without them.

Using visual clichés: How many times have you seen symbols like talk bubbles (conversation) or light bulbs (ideas) in brand insignias? These symbols convey particular meanings, but since they are overused by other designers, you should avoid them and do something unique.

The most important thing to avoid is plagiarism and I have not included it in the six mistakes because this one is a universal no-no for all types of creative people such as painters, brochure designers, graphic designers, writers etc. While it may be tempting to copy someone else’s idea, it’s not an ethical practice. Always create something original so that you can be proud of your work.


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11th Sep, 2013

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