New Feature: Playlist Center! Pick a topic and let our playlists guide the way.

Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

Designing a Logo
Illustration by

Designing with polygons and stars


From:

Designing a Logo

with Nigel French

Video: Designing with polygons and stars

So we have seen squares and rectangles, we have seen circles and ellipses, let's now look at triangles and stars. To draw a triangle we use the Polygon tool, which is on the same tool space as the Rectangle and Ellipse. Click and hold down to access that. If necessary, you can tear off the whole panel. Then you've got access, easy access, to all of those tools. So with my Polygon, as I click and drag if I want to add to the number of sides, I just press my up arrow or my down arrow to remove the number of sides. Now, actually I want a triangle, if I want to constrain it, I hold down the Shift key. So there is my triangle and the triangles of course will look like arrows, so they suggest direction.

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
please wait ...
Designing a Logo
2h 57m Intermediate Sep 17, 2008

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

A great logo is often basic, composed only of essential parts, but simple is not always easy. Designer Nigel French distills over a decade of professional design and teaching experience in Designing a Logo. He discusses the principles and techniques of what makes a logo work, and explains type-only designs, type treatments, and logo symbols in depth. He also explores how to work with clients on defining job parameters and selecting a final design, as well as how to prepare the logo for print and web publication. Nigel demonstrates each of these techniques in the course of designing a new logo for a real client, so viewers can either follow along or apply the techniques to their own work. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Choosing the right typeface
  • Exploring transparency, warped type, and other treatments
  • Working with line, shape, and imagery in a logo symbol
  • Considering current trends in logo design
  • Fine-tuning a design after client selection
  • Drawing up usage guidelines
Subjects:
Design Logo Design Print Design Projects Design Skills
Software:
Illustrator InDesign
Author:
Nigel French

Designing with polygons and stars

So we have seen squares and rectangles, we have seen circles and ellipses, let's now look at triangles and stars. To draw a triangle we use the Polygon tool, which is on the same tool space as the Rectangle and Ellipse. Click and hold down to access that. If necessary, you can tear off the whole panel. Then you've got access, easy access, to all of those tools. So with my Polygon, as I click and drag if I want to add to the number of sides, I just press my up arrow or my down arrow to remove the number of sides. Now, actually I want a triangle, if I want to constrain it, I hold down the Shift key. So there is my triangle and the triangles of course will look like arrows, so they suggest direction.

I can flip this around like so, I'm holding down the Shift key to constrain the rotation to 90 degrees. I can put it right there and maybe I would want to just size it so that it's the same size as the type itself and there we have a logo, I could position it anywhere relative to the type to suggest all kind of different things with the triangle or maybe let's now put it flat again, there we go. And what if I were to maybe duplicate that like so and then flip the duplicate a 180 degrees so that it looks like that and then I could put that one right next to that one and maybe have this one have a stroke rather than a fill and you can create all kinds of interesting shapes, just play around with this stuff, there is so much you can do.

We are just messing around with multiples of these simple shapes. Of course, you could put a triangle within a triangle, let's make that one bigger and then I'll double click on my Scale tool. Let's have one scaled to 50% of that and we want - have it be a Copy, and then we will fill it with white and I'm going to switch to my Selection tool now. I'm going to flip this around and position it down there like that, put a white triangle inside of a filled triangle and from one triangle you get four triangles.

Let's now look at some stars. I'm going to hide my guides for a moment, Apple+; or Ctrl+; will start the Star tool. When working with the Star tool, if you want to constrain it, hold down the Shift key, if you want to add to the number of points on the star, press your Up arrow, your Down arrow will remove the points. So I'm going to - we would just go with a five-pointed star. If you want to change the star inset, hold on your Apple or Ctrl key and you can drag in or out with that to change the inset value.

But I want just a regular five-pointed star and again that's going to be green color. I'm just going to pull that down there like so, and stars are used all the time in logos. We saw the famous Converse logo uses a star. We have been talking about the issue of separating these two words and I'm differentiating them by color, but what if I wanted them both to be of the same color, then I could put a space between them. I might need to make that space a little bit bigger, so I'm holding down the Alt key and the right arrow just to turn that space a bit bigger and then get my star and then put that in the middle right there and hold down Alt and Shift to just scale that down a bit, like so, separate our two words with a star in between them.

Let's just back up a little bit, I'm going to press my Undo key a few times to get back to right there, again working with the star. This time what I'm going to do is, I'm going to increase the size of it, and I think I'll make the points rounded rather than sharp. So I'll choose my Direct Selection tool, click off the star to de-select it and then come and select each of these anchor points one by one, using the Direct Selection tool. In fact, I'm holding down the Shift key and just kind of dragging over them.

Get to the -- one go there and then using my tools options up here, I can click on this button Convert selected anchor points to smooth, I have got a rounded star. Well I'm not crazy about that but maybe I want a star that does not have quite such an inset as that, so I'm going to draw myself another star and make it a little bit more like so, size it up and I'll do the same thing again with my star points, selecting with the Direct Selection tool, convert them and that's kind of more along the lines of what I was after. And then, I don't know, maybe I want to put that in inside a circle or something.

Now the star, for some reason, doesn't have a center point, but we can add one. If I come to my Window menu and choose Attributes, and I can then click on this little icon here, Show Center, that's going to show me where the center point is and then I can use that information to center a circle on that, send the circle to the back, come back and select the star and we will make the star white. Actually even though it is centered, it looks a little bit off-centered.

So I'm just going to optically center it by nudging up a bit, and there is my symbol that can now go with my logo, or maybe I want another circle inside of that really not knowing when to stop sometimes, there is another circle inside there, and I'll fill that with the green. Now I think maybe I should quit while I'm ahead on that one, because that's not getting any better. But of course we can inverse these values, I could maybe select this star and rather than it has a white fill, it could have a white stroke, and I can make that stroke a bit heavier and there is another slightly different version.

These explorations with stars and triangles they are nothing more than just a starting point, play with them, make multiples, experiment with the different fills, with the different weights, position the resulting elements differently with your type. All kinds of interesting things will come up. You'll find yourself going off on all kinds of different tangents. Some of them will lead you nowhere, some of them may lead you to exactly the logo that you are after. But there is no way of knowing until you try these things.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Designing a Logo.


Expand all | Collapse all
please wait ...
Q: Where can I learn more about graphic design?
A: Discover more on this topic by visiting graphic design on lynda.com.
 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

join now Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Designing a Logo.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.