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Are logo designers really as smart as they think they are?

As I sat at my desk busying myself with the usual “odds and ends” of a logo designer, the familiar “New Email” tone suddenly struck my eardrum. Upon further investigation I realized that it was a reply from a logo design client that I had emailed several days ago. They had first emailed me requesting that I design a logo for their company; In response, I sent them an questionnaire email asking a few simple questions regarding the basic layout of there design. Their reply was simple; something like, “Heck, I don’t know. Why don’t you come up with something?”.

Sounds familiar?

This is not only one of the most common “pickles” logo designers find themselves in, it is also one of the most frustrating.
Although I admit these clients aren’t quite like “The Clients from Hell” (see Wes’s post), it still can be quite frustrating trying to please a client who has no clue how they want their logo designed.

Although clients like these will always roam the earth, don’t give up, there is a solution to the problem:  Imagination.

The definition of imagination is ability to visualize: the ability to form images and ideas in the mind, especially of things never seen or experienced directly.
And that’s just what we need when we find ourselves in those sticky situations.
It’s our imagination that makes us good logo designers, not how “smart” we are.
Don’t be afraid to try really weird designs that you come up with; these strange concepts can sometimes be the best.
Also, look for ways you can make your logo unique, eye catching; a dull, uninteresting logo is very unlikely to excite a client.

It’s amazing how much time you can waste just sitting there at the computer biting your fingernails,  trying to figure out a good design scenario.
Do something else for a change; rake the leaves,  something to clear you brain.
You wouldn’t believe how many times I just couldn’t come up with an good concept and when I just got up off the computer and started doing something else, the ideas came flooding in.
So much so, that I had to stop what I was doing to get back on and see how they worked.
Try it, and if nothing else, at least you got something done.
Also, when thinking up concepts, remember that your logo should be designed in such a way that it is unique and memorable while it also reminds one of whatever service or product your clients business or organization provides.
For example:
Let’s pretend you were designing a logo for JS Bait & Tackle.
Ask yourself a few questions: What kind of things are related to fishing? Worms, hooks, fishing poles, ect…  How can you cleanly incorporate these ideas into your design?
Use your imagination when trying to piece things together like that.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to say that imagination is everything in logo design, only that every graphic designer needs it.

Speaking of imagination, try to imagine where all the logo designers across the world would be if it wasn’t for powerful graphic design programs like Adobe Illustrator?
I can tell you, we’d be out of business; as a matter a fact we wouldn’t have been in business in the first place.
But you must remember that even if you know Illustrator like a pro, are you really smarter then someone who doesn’t?
That is a question that deserves careful consideration, however I think we can come to a reasonable conclusion:
Even with the best imagination, Graphic designers could go nowhere without design software.
But on the other hand, the best software is useless without a brain to use it!
It is sort of like a vehicle: What is more important, the gas or the vehicle?
No vehicle could run without fuel; but what good does the fuel do without a car to put it in!

Do you get my point?

I didn’t think so.

Let’s just put it this way, every designer needs good design software,  but more importantly needs a good imagination.
And I suppose the only question remaining is how smart we really are.

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