My logo stopped representing the service I provide. I provide entire brand solutions, considered strategy, project management with essential marketing advice and first rate websites. My logo didn’t say that – it said ‘Freelance Graphic Designer.’ That’s selling myself short. The strap-line should read, “Listen, Communicate and Develop.” That’s what Tom O’Boyle Designs does. Listen to the client, the world, users and audience. Then we communicate in the most effective way possible and subsequently develop the client’s business. So change was in order…
As a designer branding yourself is never easy. In fact I think its one of the hardest things to do as a designer. You have to look in the mirror and heavily critique yourself – never an attractive proposition.
Firstly you have to consider other people’s views of you and where you need to fit in the industry and the type of client you appeal to. For me that’s the easy part. The tricky bit is getting something that appeals to your client, isn’t trashed by your competitors and represents you appropriately. Oh and you’re going to have to look at it everyday – so best create something you like.
When you specialise in brand solutions it pays to lead by example – however it’s easier said than done and if I’m honest I’ve not done that until now. My logo layout wasn’t versatile and I broke my own rule of “If you can’t make a potato stamp out of it, it’s too complicated.” The icon wasn’t strong enough and it didn’t represent my level of service. Time to stick to my own set of rules.
This is how I found my solution. Mid-way through designing a friend’s logo I stopped and did my own. I applied the same approach I apply to everyone else’s logos. I forgot my own concerns and just tried to treat Tom O’Boyle Designs as I would anyone else. So to any designers who need to brand themselves – don’t fret and don’t procrastinate. Bite the bullet – apply your own rules to yourself, remove your inhibitions from the situation if possible and be thick skinned. Also trust your own decisions and opinions and only consult a very small and select group of people. Everyone is always an expert on this but really a few fellow professionals is all you need.
So the solution is a simple, strong logo that is made up of the three letters of my initials and is positioned to also look like a persons head and shoulders. This represents the personal service you get and the relationship between designer and client. The font has been tweaked, altered and made original. The font also links to the icon nicely (always essential in any logo) and it represents me, my interests and my likes (a logo has to represent the client). The logo is also viewed differently. Some people see the letters first, some the face and that’s just fine by me and if the penny drops after a little time – all the better. That’s the idea – a solution which provides that lovely moment of realisation. If you don’t like it, that’s fine – but wait until you see it being used – it always makes a difference.
If you need branding services, logo design or advice on your identity and strategy get in touch.