Jen Blume Logo Design Critique 6

Jun 05, 2009 / Erik Peterson
Jen Blume Logo Design Critique Logo

Jen Blume Logo Design Critique

Jen submitted this her company logo for critique and left the following comment about her goals for the logo design,

“This is a logo for my own design firm. I was going for a very graphic design using playful and creative typography.”

The following critique is based on one designer’s opinion and experience. I always appreciate the readers thoughts as well. So, I’ll ask a question of two in the critique, please share your perspective in the comments at the end of this logo design critique.

Design Principals

I like that Jen is trying to communicate something about herself and possibly her design style through this logo. As I have said in the past, a good logo should make a statement about the company it represents, which is what you’re trying to do here. However, there are some areas that can be improved. In general, I feel like the logo looks more messy than it does playful. In particular, the ‘u’ and ‘e’ appear like they are about to fall to the ground. It also feels very constrained in its bounding box. Is there a reason for the containing rectangle?

Functionality / Versatility

With its containing rectangle, I’m not sure the logo would work well in reverse. If the type were black and cutoff where the rectangle currently defines the space it would seem awkward. I suppose you could put a stroke around the rectangle to help redefine the space. Other than that, the boldness and single color of the logo make it easy to reproduce in a variety of mediums.

Does the Logo Work for the Audience?

The immediate audience for this logo would be your clients, existing and prospective. You’ve gotta put your best foot forward with your logo since it is often the first piece of your work they will see. Spend the time and refine this logo make it as perfect as possible. Cleanup the spots where the letters overlap and be sure everything is spot on.

Jen Blume Alignment Graphic

It’s often those small details that can make or break a design. If your goal is to show creativity through your logo, I think you could do more to adequately communicate it. Just keep in mind not to get too complicated. Sometimes a lot can be said with simple wordmark.

Uniqueness

The typeface selection is boring and uncreative. If you want to portray yourself as playful and creative, you may do better to choose a typeface that is more unique or better yet, create your own typeface. I would also caution that there is a delicate balance to making type look playful versus accidental or messy.

Question for the readers

please respond in the comments below

Do you have any playful and/or creative logos that you can share with Jen for inspiration? If so just link to them below with a comment about what she could get from it.

Typography

The phrase ‘graphic design’ in the bottom right corner of the design feels totally put of place. Currently it has no relationship with the rest of the design. Both the placement and typeface selection are at fault. Explore some other typefaces and placement in order to achieve balance and consistency.

The serif typeface choice for ‘Jen Blume’ doesn’t feel creative and as I mentioned earlier, and can be improved. What is the reason the ‘j’ and ‘b’ being so much larger than the other letters? If you want people to remember your initials, consider a monogram style logo. Otherwise they should be much closer in scale and visual weight to the rest of the letters. The change in weight of letters is distracting to the eye.

Possible Improvements

Designing a logo for yourself or own business is one of the hardest logo designs you’ll ever work on. So what is the best way to improve the logo? Well I think have made some comments above that can certainly offer some direction. Here’s a list of actionable items.

  1. Watch the details. Go over the design and tweak all those areas where things overlap and be sure everything is exactly as it should be.
  2. Consider an alternate typeface that can showcase ‘playful’ and ‘creative’ more effectively.
  3. Possibly remove the containing box since it is somewhat restrictive and leaves the mark feeling cramped.
  4. Rework the placement and typeface selection of the phrase ‘graphic design’ to make it feel more integrated into the design.

Overall, I think you have a good start on the logo design. And with some refinement you can definitely improve it. Please know that my intention in critiquing your work is not to hurt feelings, but to offer constructive feedback. I hope it was helpful. Best of luck, to you!

I appreciate and welcome your comments, and look forward to hearing from you soon. I purposely don’t cover every possible improvement that can be made to this logo, so go for it if you think I missed anything. All I ask is that you keep your comments clean and appropriate.

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6 Comments so far. Keep 'em Coming.

#1

By Mark Daum

06.05.2009 at 09:04 PM

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I like the idea of the jumbled type though it seems a little heavy. Might I suggest the words graphic design shoot upwards from the ‘u’ at about a 20 percent angle? It would better marry your name and what you do within the design. And although I am staunch believer that a logo must first work in black & white before color (or anything else is added), I encourage you to explore color. Since the text is land locked across the card, maybe even two colors? Keep working. You’re onto something here. smile

#2

By Chris Madden

06.05.2009 at 09:17 PM

Chris Madden Profile Image

Good post Erik. I agree with the points you made. Kind of a funny logo, because it’s not bad, and I can feel what Jen’s trying to accomplish with it. But still *something* is just off.

To answer the Question for the Readers:

Here’s a beautiful monogram style logo that’s I’d say hits the ‘playful’ and ‘creative typography’ mark.
http://logopond.com/gallery/detail/60034

#3

By Yael K. Miller

06.05.2009 at 09:54 PM

Yael K. Miller Profile Image

I find the logo hard to read.  I have to stop a concentrate on each letter and then put it together to comprehend it says: Jen Blume.  Puzzling out the meaning is not “playful.” 

The “b” is what catches the eye and all I can think is that Jen Blume must like to be referred to as B or Blume.

#4

By Dave Sutula

06.08.2009 at 10:42 AM

Dave Sutula Profile Image

I can agree with the messy remarks and certainly agree with the remark about lining up the ‘ligatures ’ for lack of a better term.  What I take exception with is the idea that it’s hard to ‘puzzle’ out what the logo says.  if you’ve just landed in an English speaking country and have no idea what sounds letters make in our language, then perhaps (or if you’re three years old or really, really dumb).  I can read it just fine and I would submit that if your clients can’t read it , they will be unable to puzzle out the line items on your invoice and therefore should not be your clients to begin with.

#5

By Jen Blume

06.13.2009 at 05:49 AM

Jen Blume Profile Image

Thanks for everyone’s comments. This logo was a design project that I did for a class. The assignment was to design a black and white only logo for yourself with a 15 minute time limit.  I received good feedback in class and wanted to get more input on the idea which is why I submitted it. There is something about the idea that still appeals to me so I do plan on working with it more, cleaning it up and trying some different things based on everyone’s comments. What Erik has said about designing your own logo being very difficult is so true. I’ve have several completely different ideas that I am working on and just haven’t found the “right” idea yet. When I get closer, I will definitely post it to get feedback. Thanks again.

#6

By bumper stickers

03.24.2011 at 02:43 AM

bumper stickers Profile Image

A logo is a graphic mark or emblem commonly used by commercial enterprises, organizations and even individuals to aid and promote instant public recognition. Logos are either purely graphic symbols/icons or are composed of the name of the organization a logotype or wordmark


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