[A logo] should look just as good in
15-foot letters on top of company headquarters
as it does one sixteenth of an inch tall on company stationery.
No matter what you call it, the mark by which a business or organization is identified requires careful design considerations. Once the design process is past the angst of what best represents the organization, my biggest concern is, how might it be used? A Time to Knit, LLC is a publishing company. Its hallmark needs to fit on book spines, business cards, and stationary. It needs to render just as well in black and white as it does in color.
This brings me to my first guiding principal—a logo usually needs to look as good in one color at a low resolution as it does in more sophisticated applications.
Unlike the logo above, the mark at the right does not render well at a low resolution. In this instance, that is okay. The lighthouse mark was designed to be used only to identify a series of publications that will be produced in high resolution printing—a collection of garment designs called, Great Lakes Chill Chasers.
A second guiding principle asks the question, “Will the mark be put to a specific and limited use or will it be used for an extended period of time across many media applications?”
The logo at the left is the most detailed one I’ve designed—usually simple line art is the ideal choice. This was done with a purpose. The city of Dayton has a logo that features a Wright Flier circling a globe. This guild is closely identified with its geographic location so the Wright Flier is used and the globe has been translated into a ball of knitting yarn.
Even though this is complex for a logo, it has been successfully reproduced using silk screening and embroidery—two uses best rendered with a simple design.
At the other end of the spectrum, the Shepherd’s Moon mark below was designed for website use only. Although the original art is high enough resolution to be printed commercially, it would lose a lot of its impact if rendered in gray-scale. The one-color version was designed for printing on yarn labels and shopping bags.