Please provide critique ASAP Thank you

Alfonso's picture

A software company to which I am contracted asked me to redesign their brand in the blink of an eye.(a couple of days) As all my time is inundated by a pile of other "urgent and more important" work to do for this same client and I am not receiving any additional resources (more money nor more time) I will not be able to dedicate the amount of attention to this project that any branding effort truly deserves. However I have never in my career delivered mediocre work and lacking any time at all in which to conceive a brand is still no excuse. I therefore turn to you and to any one who wishes to supply their input. Specifically I am requesting any input on the word mark concept I have started. This image only demonstrates the lettering concept but none of the letters are finalized yet. I like the M and U. I also believe the A once refined will work nicely. The Z, once drawn properly, might also work but I want to draw suggestions on it. As for the T and the H they are my biggest concern as I would like their form to be a bit more harmonies with the other letters.

Please provide impute asap.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who took the time to comment on the quick concept sketch I placed. Unfortunately it seem that almost no one read what I wrote or that I did not express myself clearly as every one seems to address this as a completed design rather than a quick thumbnail to try to communicate a concept. The X-height and strokes are irrelevant and arbitrary at this point. Also arbitrarily drawn is the crossbar on the A, H and t although I want suggestions on unifying them. The general concept that I like and was trying to communicate was how the bowl curve of the u plays off the M and it’s apex and have these counter echoed by the A. What I do not like is that I have not yet arrived at how to make all the letters compatible. Expressing that the H or z needs work dose not help me as I am very well aware of all that is wrong with those quickly drawn letter forms. My problem is that I do not have the time to dedicate to make the portion of the concept I like work within a hole. This is why I placed the quick sketch here to solicit specific ideas as to how to make all the letters work as a unified hole and still retain the element of the M, U and A playing off each other.

Please provide specific ideas as to how to make the letters work.

Thank you.

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picard102's picture

The images do not show up for me. You may have to convert the images to RGB and upload them again for some people to view them.

Alfonso's picture

I reloaded the image please try once more.

Alaskan's picture

It's very icy and sleek, but I think the letters are disconnected. The z especially sticks out - I feel like the crossbar needs to match the bowl curve of the u.

The A gets too much attention - perhaps connect the crossbar all the way? It feels scaled down compared to the m, and therefore out of balance.

Maybe you could play with some ligatures somewhere, too? (th comes to mind)

Overall, I'm concerned the letters are so flat they won't scale down very well.

jonsel's picture

You need to address this as a business decision before considering design. Seriously. They've asked you to take on a significant project while providing neither the time nor additional fees required. How can you say "yes" to something like this?

henrypijames's picture

I'm not sure why the logo has to be flat. I've stretched it to 300% height (so the letters are roughly square) and it looks better to me that way.

@Jon: While you certainly have a point, this doesn't seem to be the place to talk about it.

Lex Kominek's picture

This looks like a low-quality freeware font to me. I think you need to break the grid a bit more in order for this to work, especially in the 'Z', 'M', and 'U'.

- Lex

ChuckGroth's picture

several points have already been made that i have to agree with.
the "a" and the "z" are ill-formed, and none of the letters are compatible with the "h" in my view.
additionally, taller may be the way to go, or you might try thicker strokes.

but this would have to be a pretty important client to my books to allow them to get away with a demand like that. do it now, and do it free? the client/designer relationship has to have a mutual respect.

fontplayer's picture

This looks like a low-quality freeware font to me.

I'd agree with this, only to add, one that I wouldn't be tempted to download. If you have any Plan B...otherwise I'd ask the amazing Mr. Coles for a few suggestions. He has a talent for alternates.

weinziet's picture

I agree with Alaska. It flows well, then the T and H stop it. Maybe you could try some detail, or perhaps altering an existing face, instead of building a new one from scratch in a time constraint like that.

Alfonso's picture

Thank you to everyone who took the time to comment on the quick concept sketch I placed. Unfortunately it seem that almost no one read what I wrote or that I did not express myself clearly as every one seems to address this as a completed design rather than a quick thumbnail to try to communicate a concept. The X-height and strokes are irrelevant and arbitrary at this point. Also arbitrarily drawn is the crossbar on the A, H and t although I want suggestions on unifying them. The general concept that I like and was trying to communicate was how the bowl curve of the u plays off the M and it’s apex and have these counter echoed by the A. What I do not like is that I have not yet arrived at how to make all the letters compatible. Expressing that the H or z needs work dose not help me as I am very well aware of all that is wrong with those quickly drawn letter forms. My problem is that I do not have the time to dedicate to make the portion of the concept I like work within a hole. This is why I placed the quick sketch here to solicit specific ideas as to how to make all the letters work as a unified hole and still retain the element of the M, U and A playing off each other.

Please provide specific ideas as to how to make the letters work.

Thank you.

Alaskan's picture

You've confused me Alfonso. If you want a critique of the letters, that's what you've got here - in spades. I suggested you close the crossbar on the A and repeat the bowl curve within the z.

If you want a critique of the "quick concept sketch," that's clearly here, too.

If you want us to draw new letters for you, well, IMO, that's too much to ask.

Good Luck.

ChuckGroth's picture

no kidding. as alaskan said, it seems like you've gotten a lot of suggestions. but to spell it out anyway, make them work together.

jonsel's picture

henrypjames: While you certainly have a point, this doesn’t seem to be the place to talk about it.

Well, it may not have been specifically asked for, but then where is the place? I brought up the point because Alfonso clearly doesn't have enough time to fully work out a single concept. While we can help him formally with letter constructions, I think it far more relevant and instructive to help him solve what's really a business and client/designer relationship problem. If he can solve that, then he'll have more time to consider his concepts and work it further so Typophile's readers can provide better constructive criticism.

And to push myself further into dark territory (and echo others' sentiments), I don't feel we should be providing too much help for those that whip off a quick wordmark and throw it to the gallery. We're not here to do your work for you.

Lex Kominek's picture

The X-height and strokes are irrelevant and arbitrary at this point.

I am very well aware of all that is wrong with those quickly drawn letter forms.

So what were you looking for a critique on? The colour choice?

Your logo is only letterforms at this point, and you were given critique on those. If the letters were drawn arbitrarily and without thought, and you knew what was wrong with them, then why did you submit them for critique?

- Lex

henrypijames's picture

Dear original poster, I can't agree more with the others' comments to your "clarification": Now you've declared many crucial aspects of your draft to be "irrelevant", it's practically impossible to provide you with any meaningful suggestion. As we all know, forms work as a whole. How the curves of the letters are perceived greatly depends on things like height and stroke, there's simply no way to treat them as "irrelevant".

picard102's picture

I agree with Lex, it has a very freeware feel too it. Almost like a font called Sliders I saw once in a Sci-Fi font collection.

daigledavid's picture

I assume it’s too late to add any comments. But I read most of the comments and I find a Font chosen to be passé and cheap looking or if its custom its done in a style that will not last. Sorry for being blunt, but there are a large number of alternative Fonts available for a really professional word mark. Also, these day we sometimes get requests from clients that are pressing and may not pay enough. But with most clients we are building a relationship. This being said, relationship always needs both parties to give and receive, both ways. But you must never sell yourself short of your Professional Quality Work and craftsmanship, unless its for a Non-Profit Org. I've done very professional Word marks for many clients and if they don't understand the value, then you are journeying to the "Free" and cheap zone. Branding should never be approached in this manner, because its major implications and of its importance to any company.

David Daigle, Canada

fontplayer's picture

Sorry for being blunt

I thought maybe I was a bit blunt, but it seems it doesn't matter much.

ChuckGroth's picture

i think there are other issues here, even aside from working for free. i'll work for free at times (pro bono, anyone?), if it's a project i think warrants it or if i know it will lead to something down the road. but on those occassions, i actually want my BEST work to surface. but to agree to something like that, esp. in the manner presented (A software company to which I am contracted asked me to redesign their brand in the blink of an eye.(a couple of days) As all my time is inundated by a pile of other “urgent and more important” work to do for this same client and I am not receiving any additional resources (more money nor more time) can only lead to disasterous work. why would someone consent to those conditions?

additionally, i believe alfonso received some very constructive feedback on his post, all of which seemed summarily dismissed. what the heck?

Lex Kominek's picture

This situation reminds me of the old adage of good, fast, and cheap. It seems like this company is unrealistically expecting all three.

- Lex

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