Illustrator: Creating letter logos

Design ideas and design process

For this task, I  created three different letter logos made of my initials. I wanted to create three that were very distinct and unique, and to do this, I did a lot of sketches and rough drawings to help me brainstorm. I also played around with different ways of arranging the letters, as well as asking my family for their opinions, before settling on an official idea.

Initial sketches

Logo 1: From the beginning, I knew I wanted one of the logos to look classy and traditional, so when I sketches rough arrangements for my initials, I kept in mind that I wanted the letters to be a serif typeface. I first sketched a variety of different letter combinations for my initials, and the whole time I imagined them as having serifs and looking old and traditional. After this, I began to use illustrator to play around with my initials. I kept them in black and white however so that I was not distracted by colour. I then combined all of my experiments to decide which I liked most. After deciding on my favourite combination, I began to warp the text and explore different ways of presenting the thickness and length of parts of the letter. Eventually I found a shape I liked and stuck with it. I began to explore different colours and strokes, but stuck with a simple white fill and black background (final logo seen here Final logo 1)

Illustrator letter arrangement experiments
Logo 1 editing process










Logo 2: The process of creating me second logo was fairly similar to the first, where I simply continued to rearrange two letters on my screen. I also used my initial sketches for logo 1 as inspiration. Much like before, I combined all of my favourite arrangements on a page to help me decide which I liked the most (initial combinations left).  After deciding which was my favourite, I warped the text and thickened and thinned it in certain areas until I found a style which I liked. Once I decided on a shapes, I began experimenting with colour. After finally deciding on a colour combination, my logo was complete (final logo here logo 2)

Colour experiments
Arrangement experiments






Logo 3: For my third and final logo, I wanted to create a more soft and delicate logo which looked almost hand written. Partially inspired by the coke logo, I chose to make this logo using the pen tool so that I could add on lots of different twirls at the end of lines. After I decided on a rough shape for my letter lines to follow, I started exploring different colours and thicknesses. Finally, I ended up settling on a simple black design with thick and thin lines (final outcome here logo 3).

Logo 3 sketches
Logo 3 colour experiments






Software tutorials

As I am fairly new to illustrator, especially text related features on it, I found myself looking at quite a few tutorials to help me create my letter logos. I used the tutorials for a variety of reasons including to help me warp and edit letters, to help me add multiple strokes to letters, and to help me understand shortcuts and other basic functions such as how to create and delete anchor points. The first tutorial I looked at was an adobe article about how to edit and warp text available here, this helped me a lot and once I figured out how to warp my text, the rest of the task was far easier as I understood the basics. The article also helped me understand more about how the text tool in illustrator works and how I can use the features available.

Another extremely helpful tutorial I looked at was an article about how to remove part of a shapes outer stroke without the stroke rearranging itself (available here). The article was immensely helpful as I have always struggled with combining shapes and not being able to remove parts of the stroke. This was especially helpful with my first logo and I was struggling to combine the two letters to make them look like one shape as there was a stroke line connected to the R which separated the two letters. As you can see in ”logo 1 editing process’ above, the removal of a small amount of stroke made a huge difference in the look and authentic flow of my logo. This is an issue I have struggled with before as well, including during my week 5 task where I had to make a podcast cover for home going.

Finally, an article about different text styles available on illustrator helped inspire me to explore a varsity/high-school football colour scheme and style in my second logo. The article also showed me how to add layers of stroke to one letter. Available here.


Resources for research and inspiration

To help with my idea generation at the beginning of my logo designing, I briefly looked online at examples of letter logos. I wanted to look more at how the letters were arranged and their shape than their colour and texture. Later on when I had designed the shape of my second logo, I looked at different ways of filling and decorating text (link here). I also looked at company logos which looked hand drawn such as Coca Cola to help me get an idea on how to draw my third logo as I wanted it to look hand written. I really liked the free stroke style of Coca Cola as well as Unilever, Cadburys, and Disney. Serif based logos such as Gap, Rolex, and Vogue are what inspired me to create my traditional styled logo 1.