Logo Logic & Lingo

Rick Porfilio

Hello my name is Rick Porfilio, Ad Lab’s Art Director. I’m new to this blog thing. I’ve been in the graphic design business for 33 years, but never been asked to write. That’s the job of a copywriter. However, I do understand more “visual” mediums, so I’ll try and use my words to convey my thoughts on logo design.

Every company out there has a logo, and if they don’t have one…they need one! Seriously, think of anything you’ve purchased lately, or a store or restaurant you’ve visited. Even if the logo is little more than a specific spelling of the name, it’s there somewhere. A logo is the building block of a company’s brand identity. You’ll see it on their website, social media platforms, printed materials, office décor and even on their vehicles. A great logo is one that identifies your brand uniquely from others and lets your audience know what you do. It’s a mnemonic device, a calling card. It’s a one-look encapsulation, really, of what and who you are.

So what exactly constitutes a logo? It’s a combination of visual imagery, an icon, image or symbol in combination with type. A logo can be simple or complex, but has to have meaning. When we design a logo for a client you have to ask the right questions. What does the client picture in their mind? Everyone has a little creative in them. One of the biggest decisions is color. Picking the right combination helps establish a brand’s identity. A lot goes into such considerations, ideas such as color psychology, for example. Green is perceived as life, environment, and the eco system. Good for financial, industrial, organic products and cosmetics. Certain colors evoke hunger or passion, others give a sense of calm. The right color can make the customer “feel” a certain way about your product or business immediately.

The typeface (or font) used in a logo represents the personality and values of the company. The right font can make all the difference, conveying strength, compassion, nostalgia, urgency…a myriad of feelings. Within the font itself, options like serif, sans serif, bold, light, italics, further subdivide the literally 1000s of fonts to choose from, each one projecting a different emotional reaction. At Ad Lab, we start designing a logo with font choices and then move to color choices, an icon or symbol that strengthen the logotype. We always give a client at least five logos to start with for their review. We can then get their input and further develop the logo that will represent their company going forward. 

Designing a logo is an art that requires a mix of creativity, business sense and psychology and when you get it right, you can create a logo that speaks to your target audience, builds trust, and acts as a symbol for your brand.