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Designing a Logo

Designing with rectangles


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Designing a Logo

with Nigel French

Video: Designing with rectangles

So we are keeping it simple and we are working with simple shapes. Here are some famous logos that use simple shapes. Circles, triangles, ovals, rectangles, stars, rounded rectangles, all incredibly easy shapes to do in Illustrator. I am going to begin working with squares and rectangles, move on to circles and ellipses and then to stars and triangles. So this is a starting point. Nothing but our type. Let's see, how about we draw ourselves a simple square like so and we will give it a stroke weight.

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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 rectangles

So we are keeping it simple and we are working with simple shapes. Here are some famous logos that use simple shapes. Circles, triangles, ovals, rectangles, stars, rounded rectangles, all incredibly easy shapes to do in Illustrator. I am going to begin working with squares and rectangles, move on to circles and ellipses and then to stars and triangles. So this is a starting point. Nothing but our type. Let's see, how about we draw ourselves a simple square like so and we will give it a stroke weight.

Move it up like that maybe. We can call that a logo, maybe not the best logo, but it's a logo. How about we do this? I will select that and I will switch those values, so I will give it now a green fill rather than a green stroke. And I will send that to the back and then I will need to come in and select that piece of type and make the fill of my type white. I think I will want to just reduce the size of it a little bit. And again, we call it logo. What if we were to rotate the rectangle? So I will choose my Rotation tool.

I'll click on the center point and then I'll spin that around and now things are maybe going to get a little bit more interesting, another logo. I am going to back up, press my Apple+Z or Ctrl+Z a few times and get back to this point, make the green square reduce its size and that we have some multiples of this. So I will drag one of its about there. I will hold them my Alt key and my Shift key, drag away from it and then may be size. I am not sure what that means, but may be it means something, may be I will mirror those two objects down here.

I could maybe flip them back on themselves like that. Put them down there and then we have got another approach. Now, I am going to set the type to all of it to black, and I will put a space between the two this time, and I will draw myself a rectangle over that one like so. Fill it with green, duplicate it over there, select them both, send them both to the back, and then I will come in and make both those initial letters white.

All right, let's press my undo key few times and get back to this point. How about now? I just put a rectangle behind it. I want to draw the rectangle outwards from the center point so I am holding down the Alt key, and I need to just position that a bit better. I will make the stroke black, no fill, nudge it over a bit and you can change the weight of that a bit. There's a logo. Of course I could have done that with using my Rounded Rectangle. Numerous logos are nothing more than the line within a rounded rectangle.

What I want to do actually is something kind of along the lines of the London Transport roundel. I have got the center point of that rectangle selected, I can see it right there. I am now going to choose my Ellipse tool. Hold down the Alt key and the Shift key and draw a circle from that point. I will then fill that circle with my color and send it to the back. I need to make sure that rectangle also has a fill color. That needs to, I can send to the back as well and then I will send that ones to the back once more and here we go, we have got another logo.

So we can see that just working with nothing more than rectangles, and doing them as multiples, putting them over the type, rotating them, combining them, in this case with an ellipse, we got ourselves logos that look not the similar to many logos that we see and respond to every day. Next, I am going to work with circles and ellipses.

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