Designing a logo is a bit out of my comfort zone but I really wanted to get some decent branding sorted for Skinometeeth, and I don’t have the budget to pay someone else to do that.
I started out by knowing what colours I wanted to use. I don’t believe a lot of that guff that’s written about colour psychology. I think response to colour is individual, cultural, environmental. (As a child, as a guest at a Sikh wedding I was surprised at the red wedding dress, until it was explained to me that red signifying danger or erm…the opposite to virginal white…was very much a western thing, and not universal). But nevertheless I wanted something fresh and accessible and non-artyfarty graphic-designer-y (out goes the grey!) I wanted something that said friendly and kind but not fluffy and squishy. I don’t do fluffy and squishy! I don’t believe that colours have a gender, but I do know that people make judgements on colours and shades and tones according to what they think is “more masculine” or “more feminine”, so I wanted to choose tones and shades that would be appealing to my intended audience without putting off people. Turquoise and green then. I love the colour combination, but it has to be a particular kind of green, not just any green. I am massively fussy about shades and tones of green. So that’s my brand colours sorted. Not exactly scientific, but I look at it and it looks right.
But then I needed a visual. I defaulted back to my signature image. In my family, we have a bit of a tradition started by my grandmother 70 odd years ago, of all having little flags or pendants with a symbol of our choice. A few years ago we revived the tradition and all made our own pendants. I chose a Rudbekia flower – because it’s one of my favourite garden flowers, and because it sounds a bit like my name. I embroidered it onto linen – you can see it in the photo above. I started with a watercolour illustration. Rudbeckias come in shades of yellow to red, and my favourite are graded, similar to my illustration. And I enjoyed sitting and playing with my paint pallet while munching on breakfast.
Then I broke that down into pen drawings, which I digitalised, cleaned up, and coloured. I did the petals and the centre separately so I could get the detail of the centre, then the leaves. Then put them all together in Photoshop.
So at this stage everything is just black and white. Now to choose my colours. Obviously, I’m immediately taking any similarity to the Rudbeckia flower away by painting them blue, which rankled for a while. But I remembered that the point of the exercise wasn’t to create a botanical illustration, but to make a logo. I was intending to turn it into a vector image to smooth out the rough edges, but realised I like it as it is with it’s slightly wonky lines.
I know it’s not exactly an original design or layout (how much art and design is original?), but I’m proud that it’s all from my own drawings and branding choice. What do you think?