Coca Cola and Traget. These two logos have created each of these companies’ brands and have made them who they are today. The typography, placement, and contrast all have something to do with these logos. Everything Goodman discusses in chapters 1 through 4 of her text appears in both of the images above. And so do the final three chapters of her text, as I will go over in a moment. If you saw these images from far away, I’ll bet that you could immediately identify the company because of its design. And that is what branding is all about.
Before we get into defining your own personal brand, Goodman talks about grid systems in chapter 5. Although these grids do not appear in the final design, they make all the difference when you in the designing period. In other words, they are very subtle but brilliant. Grids are essential for creating visual consistency because it allows you to take a step back and see all of your work separated and gives you the ability to make changes.
In chapter 6, Goodman discusses how recognition is all everyone–especially companies–really wants. To receive recognition, you must first form an iconic identity. You do this by performing the following:
- Distill. Find the best designs possible for you image, and then choose the most promising options and eliminate the others.
- Translate. Transform the started elements into your own personal style and keep changing it until it defines you.
- Formalize. Bring all of the elements you have just transformed and bring them into visual agreement with each other. Appearance goes a long way.
- Simplify. Make your design as graphically simple as possible; no one likes clutter.
Finding your identity won’t happen overnight, it is a process that takes time. Here is a cool video that quickly gives a visual of how a designer plays around with tools to create a logotype:
So once you’ve found and taken care of the perfect iconic identity, it’s time to market and advertise your name. You need to make sure you build on to your established logotype so you continue to earn recognition. For example, you can see in the image below that it is an icon we all know very well. If you have ever been traveling on the interstate and need to find a place to stop and grab a soda or make a bathroom stop, you know you will be able to find those golden arches from a mile away because the icon is so notorious and memorable. And that’s what you want—and need— to be.
Finally, the last chapter in The 7 Essentials of Graphic Design touches on critiques and analysis of designs everywhere. In order to be a great graphic designer, you will need to identify the good graphic designs and the bad graphic designs and figure out what you could do to add your own personal brand and how you can make it better. But first, you need to know how to critique and analyze other designs before you start critiquing and analyzing your own. So get out there and start looking at other designs and observe to its core; after all, it is a knowledge of basic design principles that fuels successful designs.
On a side note, here is an info graphic that relates to my project idea:
Here is an example of why we get so many visitors on campus; whether they are walking down the mall, down by the lake, or just walking on the trails around the outskirts of campus, they all have access through the Swamp Rabbit Trail.