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Logo Theory

Presenting New Logo Concepts to Clients – and the Occasional ‘Shock’ of That Newness

FWIW, here are a few thoughts about logo design and client reception of new looks, based on experience of doing this since 1989 (when dinosaurs roamed the earth.) Sometimes the logo looks presented are so well received by the client that he/she has a hard time deciding which design to refine and ultimately go with! This is a great thing. Sometimes, however, the designs presented are so new and different from what they had in their ‘mind’s eye’ (even though they didn’t know they had a vision of what the logo would be in their own mind until they saw an actual visual that was presented that did not  match what was in their mind) that the initial reaction is a kind of ‘shock’, surprise or even rejection…

Black and white hand-drawn sketches are the best way to begin.
this is normal. As Paul Rand said, “The Public is more Familiar with Bad Graphic Design than Good Graphic Design. It is, in effect, conditioned to prefer Bad Design,  because that is what it lives with. The new becomes Threatening,  the Old, Reassuring.” Also, it is most often best for me to present initial logo ideas and concepts to you in black and white, so that colors do not overly-influence the decision making process (that is, you might would really like ‘logo option #3’ but since it is the ‘pea green’  color that you hate, it makes you dislike the entire concept-whereas if you had seen it in black and white, you could have focused solely on the structure and visual communication aspects of the logo and logomark itself, seeing if it communicates what is needed, rather than just getting biased by the color.) If I have used color on some, don’t be overly influenced by that.

Your Cheat Sheet for a New Logo Review

1) the logos presented are generally roughs (and / or sketches) and can be refined to better fit the need, once you have taken some time to review them 2) colors, if not present, can be added later, during the next round or 3 of revisions. let’s get the logo communicating perfectly with its visual presence first. if colors are present, look past them and look instead at how well the logo itself communicates what is intended, for your brand. 3) look at the logo concepts now, then wait 24 hours and look again. This second look often brings new insights or results in different selections.

4) feel free to suggest things you would like to see changed or added, and we can discuss and determine if these edits would increase the visual communication/branding aspects that we are trying to establish. If not noted on the roughs, I will be happy to share why I went a certain direction or used a certain visual device. I look forward to your review of the logo concepts and moving toward a look that fits the need and that you can be proud of. What do you think? We would love to hear your thoughts on this article! Reach us at 678.777.3165, or email