Imagine you customer is happy about having a special logo made by you and he is eager to use it. He wants the logo just PNG for his website and his documents. Unfortunately he did not mention which sizes the PNGs should have. He actually expects one file that serves every purpose, because he may not know better. So imagine he gets the PNG in 200px x 200px and suddenly he wants to print it on a business card with a layer of gloss on it. You as a trained designer quickly realize, it is not possible
The logo is a mess
As a graphic designer I often had the pleasure to re-design logos, because they were just not right, needed a bit of tuning or the zeitgeist has moved forward. What I often see are logos which aren’t ready, meaning not ready to give away to the customer for use. Not even the vector version was done.
There are white spaces in between vectors, the curves and nodes have a strange sense of symmetry, the vector information is to complicated, less nodes could be better
I have seen logos, ready to be used for print design, where the font was not vectorized. In this situation you always have to ask for the font, if you don’t have it already, because you need to have it installed in order to work on the logo, or even being able to use it on a medium.
A logo ready to use
I’m going to show you what you can do to make the logo for your customer ready to use.
Asking the right questions
First of all, ask you customer on which media he wants to use the logo?
Print: Paper, t shirt, stamps, business cards and advertisement as big as a house?
In this case you will need to design a logo that is pure vector. You need to scale the logo from the smallest readable size to a size of a house. Also your logo should work in black and white. And I mean not grayscale. Because if you customer wants a stamp, or he wants the logo to be send with fax (old technology still in use), you need to create a logo with pure black and pure white. A stamp maker will take the black space and will carve out the white space. If a stamp color is applied to the stamp it will only be applied to the space which is defined as black in your logo template.
Create your logo in black and white.
The black and white logo has a more trendy advantage: People love to put brands they like on tshirts and other materials. You can do it with a direct print, sure, but you can also use flex and flock print which needs vector information. A flex and flock print is not really a print. A machine cuts out a piece of flex and flock along the vector line. Imagine you cut a piece of paper on a line you have sketched. This is how it works.
Create outlines for print effects and an outline for cutting purposes
If you customer wishes to have a print with print effects, you need to create an outline vector graphic from the logo. If you customer wants to create a sticker from the logo, you may need an outline that has some space from the image to the edge of the sticker.
Make sure your logo is correct
I know customers don’t pay much, or at least don’t want to. But you can make them clear that your work will be quality work. So take your time and work on the curves until they fit together and no white space sticks out. Make sure that the curves have the right form and no node is too much.
A set of Logos
Depending on what you have agreed on in your contract you can create a set of the following files of the logo:
PDF with vector information of all logos, color, black/white, inverted-black/white, absolutely vectorized. No font included here.
AI file, can contain the “open data” just in case somebody wants to check the font again.
SVG for web purposes, no font included here. Some fonts exclude the free use if font-implementation on the web.
PNG, please ask the customer what sizes he needs. If he doesn’t know. Create three in different sizes and let him know that you are available for export-services.
Create ready to use files for prints, stamps, stickers according to the customer’s wishes.
I also like to create the files with and without spaces which I usually define in a corporate design.