In order to improve my skills, I have started a new project called ‘Freestyle Friday’. I work on a logo design – if possible each week, either for a real or ‘fake’ client – fake meaning the hospitality brand does exist, but didn’t ask me to redesign their logo. I’m not sure yet how long I will continue with this project, but for now it seems like a good idea to work on my own design skills.
The first project: Bourbons
So the first client I decided to work for on this Freestyle Friday project is called ‘Bourbons’. They are a restaurant focused on craft cocktails and other drinks. Besides that they provide good food with a southern flair. They liked the colors red, orange and blue, and from their design inspiration I could tell they’d be more likely to go for a bit of a modern design.
“Normally I start with a mind-map, then sketches. This time I didn’t.”
The first designs
So normally I start out with a mind-map, then sketches, and then I turn to the computer. This time I didn’t. I wanted to challenge myself to come up with ideas by just browsing the web and then immediately executing them in Illustrator. I think it went pretty okay, but would not do it again. It’s so much more difficult to get into the creative flow through this process. So even though you might get prettier looking results straight away, their quality is not as good.
More more more
“I really wanted to create many variations. The more I started doing this, the more ideas popped up in my head.”
So the first two logos were nothing special. I then made a little deal with myself: I’d design at least 10 variations. This started to get my creative ‘juice’ flowing, leading to the next 10 logos:
My favorite two
You can probably see how I really got into the flow after some time. I can’t say I ended up being extremely creative, and no, this is not my best work, however, I did want to share the power of recreation and variations. By not letting go of the challenge I created a total of 16 variations within 1.5 hours. My favorite ones? The two below.
- Try, try, try: don’t stop after the first sketch. Keep on going. In creating different options lies a lot of strength.
- Brainstorm first: By now I’ve really learned the power of a good brainstorm. And I actually love mind mapping – during my bachelor I’ve learned some creative thinking strategies which always work for me. So next time I will start with a brainstorm again. It’s just too valuable to skip.
- Sketch: Don’t start without sketching on paper first. Same story as with the brainstorm: the results from sketching often deliver such good ideas, so this step really shouldn’t be skipped.
- Talk with the client: Unfortunately I didn’t get the chance to go over the logos with the client since this was a brief I found online. Normally I would. I’d first ask for a briefing, then do a debrief, and then start working on the logo through multiple feedback rounds. I hope I can find a real client for next Friday so I can show you how I’d do this!
Did you find this helpful, fun or interesting? Then please leave a comment! And if you want a free logo for yourself, then be quick: I’m giving away 5 free logos. Yep, that’s right, 100% free of charge. And whether you want to use the logo afterwards is completely up to you. Click here to apply.