One of my favorite type of project is logo design. I’ve done over 100 logos since I began freelance work in 2000 — you can see 80 of them collected here. It gives me a bit of special pride when I see one of my logos “in the real world.” I have presented a few examples in this post.
Everyone has heard of “writer’s block”, the inability for a professional writer to get the right words down on the page. Designers experience a similar thing, that I call “Creative Block”. Sometimes it’s just something that happens on a particular day — I can’t get going on anything, and nothing I design pleases me. Other times, it’s a specific project that I’m stuck on and I end up frustrated and tossing out design after design.
I was digging through some old design projects and came across a logo design and brochure project for a company named Hattaway Communications. This project was one of the first I landed when I went out on my own in the Summer of 2001.
Our lives are filled with stories. Great books, great TV shows, plays, musicals and movies are all popular in our culture because of the stories they tell. Stories engage us, fascinate us, and sometimes teach and inspire us. Even politics has its candidates with a “great personal story.”
Too many marketing campaigns that I’ve seen are based on features and benefits, rather than stories.
We sent out a rare email blast yesterday extolling the virtues of great presentation graphics. Sure, we did it to try and drum up business, but it wasn’t entirely self-serving. We truly believe that our clients who invest in professional PowerPoint artwork and diagrams end up delivering better presentations and are more successful as a result.
One of the first decisions I made as an independent designer was to create a policy not to do “spec work.” We’ve been pretty successful at honoring the policy, although there are a few cases where we felt we had to do it to remain competitive.
When I present a design idea to a client, for example a selection of 5 logo concepts, I generally post the concepts to our extranet and send the client a link to view them. Every once in a while, a client will react badly to this tactic, asking why I don’t mount the concepts on black boards and present them to the executive team in person.