The Identity Design Process

Building a strong identity for your company, project or personal enterprise is important. It will not guarantee your success, but like the power of an idea, it has the power to change your world. A strong identity will greatly accelerate your success, and who wouldn't want to do that. Your logo is the cornerstone of your identity and as such, it will anchor the foundation of your identity, so take the time to "get it right". My identity design services are focused on achieving this kind of strength and if you're willing, I'd like to help you get yours right.

Step 1 – Getting to Know You

If you choose to give me a call, it will be, or should be, after you've reviewed available information for several identity designers, and I'm your top choice, or at least one of them. Yes!!! But before we go much further, I'll need to know a lot more about you, your company or project, your goals, your competition, your history and so on. I will help you share that information with me and from that I'll be able to develop a roadmap detailing how we move forward. Some people call this roadmap the creative brief and it's goal is to ensure that we're on the same page, that we share the same goals, because it will act as our guide.

Step 2 – Developing Concepts

Once we've agreed on the creative brief, a budget has been established and your initial installment has been made, I'll begin developing concepts that meet the goals you've established. This part of the process can take a while as there is no magic formula to produce perfect concepts. I will use a variety of techniques to come up with brilliant ideas, like word associations, mind mapping, taking longer and longer showers, going for bike rides and drinking unhealthy amounts of coffee. Okay, I'm exaggerating, but only a little, as this process is virtually a 24 hour a day process. It just doesn't stop when I punch out for the day, and I'm okay with that, in fact, I love it. This is what I do.

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Sketching & Rendering

As concepts begin to emerge, I'll use pencil and paper to sketch ideas into tangible forms. People are sometimes surprised at this, but sketching is much faster than using a computer and is particularly useful at this stage to visualize lots of ideas. Eventually, several concepts will reveal themselves as the front runners and then it's time to render these more formally. I believe that working in black and white at this stage is very important as the focus is on form, whether letterform or mark. Color and variations in font styles can distract from the concept. Next, you'll get your first look at these concepts, so we'll need to make sure all decision makers are involved.

Step 3 – Concepts Presentation

During my presentation I'll review the creative brief and the key elements of a good logo, which we've already discussed and explain why the concepts I'm presenting fulfill those key requirements.

A good logo is:

  • Relevant or appropriate
  • It's well thought out and will work well across a range of media needs
  • It's clearly understandable, not confusing
  • Memorable, even bold

A good logo is not:

  • Trendy
  • Based on personal preferences like color or fonts unless appropriate
  • Anything like your competition's logo or identity

After you've had a chance to review these concepts and we've discussed your thoughts about them, I'll make appropriate changes, add color(s), choose fonts and prepare a final presentation. This is where all decision makers will need to be in agreement as this is where our final heading will be set. Any necessary changes will be discussed and based on that, I'll render the final logo concept.

What's the Next Step?

Now that the logo design phase is complete, it's time to extend the concept throughout all your touch points. We'll talk about that next.