Design Firm Logo

picard102's picture

I hate designing things for myself. I find it impossible as I'm far to close to the project. So while I plan to redesign my site and marketing materials, I've decided to give my logo another shot.

I went to the book store and flipped through some logo books for about 5 hours yesterday and then came home and sketched out some quick ideas on paper playing with the L and D in my companies name. The enclosures themselves I'll worry about latter, but for now I want to get opinions on the basics of the mark.

I used a few different typefaces to create these comps, Helvetica, Futura, Interstate, ect.

I'm not looking for something flashy in itself. But something that can be used in a variety of ways, in obtrusively on client work, distinctive on presentations and marketing material of my own. So something like this I think could be used with a few different background lockups to either emphasize or subdue it as it's so simple.

But maybe it's too simple and will be easily confused with other things?

Will Miller's picture

number 8 encapsulated in a box off to the right reminds me of something but i'm not sure what. number 2 is interesting as there's a strange sense of depth starting to emerge. i think the D shape is a little off on that one though. and as a whole i think alot of the strokes feel inaccurate and out of balance with one another. number 9 is interesting too, but again, the shapes feel forced and wrong. the counter shape of number 11 is interesting, again, same issue. the D stroke feels unbalanced with that strong right angle L


Tintin81's picture

I really like no. 11. It instantly hit me as a perfect balance of the two letters.

Others I like would be no. 7 and the box in the upper right corner (although you may want to shift the type to the left by about half a pixel).

All the other versions don't look right to me.

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ebensorkin's picture

Of the ones you have the far upper right would be my pick. But what is the logo supposed to say about you anyway? What is the intended message? Depending on what that is it might be that all of these are wrong.

picard102's picture

The one is in the cube and circle is just an example of enclosure types that any of the numbers could be placed in. The one in it now is 6.

The logo Isn't supposed to say anything implicitly. I'd like it to represent strength, versatility, creativity, what you'd normally expect from a design firms logo. I think the letters themselves are a good representation of strength, and the rest can be conveyed through different types of enclosures for different purposes.

TDF's picture

No. 9 is a clever use of the negative space - it needs a bit of polishing, though.

nvhladek's picture

I think 2 has the most character. The 'D' is reminiscent of a speech bubble, although only subtly, and suggests communication to me. I like that one a lot.

I'm not so hot on the rest of them.

baskervillebold's picture

I'm feeling the square in the upper right corner as well. It seems like a stronger mark to me compared to the others. I can visualize it embossed on business collateral.

ebensorkin's picture

Why strength?

EileenB's picture

The one to the top right in the circle feels right to me. Familiar. Hmm.

Will Miller's picture

effen vodka? same idea


lapiak's picture

We have the same company initials :)

I've been down that road, and it's extremely difficult. It took months before I settled down with what I have.

I find 11 and 6/8 to show the most promise! Tweak a bit here and there and you just might have something. Good luck!

aluminum's picture

One truth in graphic design is the hardest logo you will ever design is your own, and that you'll do it a dozen times in your career, as you'll NEVER be happy with it. ;o)

I'm going to echo what other's said. Box in upper right (with some adjustments) and #11 are the ones I'd focus on. (Actually, the circle in the upper-right is good, too.)

picard102's picture

@ Eben Sorkin:

I'd like to think strength and boldness communicates a comforting confident quality.

Here is some refinements and different enclosures. Now with colour! Admittedly a bit garish colours on the lower half, those will be replaced with less vibrant colours. The idea is still that the mark itself is the letter forms, but that the enclosure can be swapped out to suit a specific need or mood.

Five plays on the speech bubble aspect mentioned.

My girlfriend happened to say that the square version reminded her of the TD Bank

ebensorkin's picture

Do you mind if I make a visual suggestion? I ask because it can do violence to the integrity of a process if it is uninvited.

I think your girlfriend makes a good point.

I wonder too about using broken lines rather than curves. Or breaking the lines more than once. Or breaking them at an angle. What about a lc d? Sort of a : "dL"

Your pinwheels are fun. What's that about?

My sense is that confidence can be shown in any of a wide variety of ways. The path chosen is not just confident. It's also a bit macho. The pinwheels work against that. I am not saying either thing is good or bad. I sense* that you are sort of shrugging your shoulders to a certain extent at my questions about intention even as you answer them. But I want to urge you again to think about your intended communication to clients. There are good counter arguments, but think there are far more validating ones. Here are two: the more you are certain of your intent the more you are inspired by it to think of options that fit; but more importantly a sense of intent saves time because it makes it easy to kill the many many ideas that are outside your intent.

* Maybe I am making a mistake here but that's how it seems.

Keep going.

picard102's picture

Go ahead and make a visual suggestion.

ebensorkin's picture

Obviously I am not taking my own advice here & designing only into your examples and the idea of strength. If you find these useful feel free to use or build on them.

EileenB's picture

I like Eben's first one a lot, but as long as we're playing, I'd try the slashes thicker. I might also try an oval-ish circle that matches the curve of the D?


picard102's picture

I tried to do some diagonals that were a bit thicker.
I'm not sure I like it. It reminds me of the mid 90's and the horrible futuristic themes fonts. It seems less refined to me and puts more emphasis on the shape being a D itself rather then an L and a D.

aluminum's picture

Those last two aren't bad. I think the circle needs to be larger to give more padding to the the D, though.

Of your previous batch, things were getting a bit busy there. However, #5 was quite interesting...forming the L and D and an Apostophe. The apostrophe adds an extra 'aha!' to it.

mk2's picture

Yes, the 'apostophe' version is more eye-catching to me too.

Grid based approach like Mr. Eben Sorkin's bottom left example is worth to try too IMHO. Although it might be ineffective when turned monochrome :)

But if do choose to continue developing your last design, referencing the right-hand version, maybe it would look more harmonious to the bottom slice if the 'L' is slanted or obliqued.

Good luck!

eliason's picture

Like TDF, I find the original #9 intriguing and would be interested to see if its awkwardness could be worked out. Part of its appeal is in conveying letters in two different types, which could suggest a design firm with the ability to produce a wide range - to have command over various ways of communicating depending on the client's needs.

The first of the two in the 6:04 post looks like one of those circle-and-slash signs: "No D's allowed"

If you might pursue the apostrophe one, could you thicken the L? - it looks lopsided to me.

ebensorkin's picture

I agree the diagonals dont seem to work. They can be seen too many ways. The one you did on the left looks like a "no D" sign a little. LD is kind of funny too because it can sound like "el dee" and "eldy". What is the company name?

Scalfin's picture

Maybe you should try blackletter or something.

picard102's picture

I stayed away from blackletter and serifs in general because I tend to dislike them personally.

To address the motive Eben brought up here are some of the things I jotted down while drawing.

Ideal Messages: professional; fun; dedicated; timeless; confident; strong; minimalistic; creative; flexible; solid.

The company name is Leschinski Design.

Scalfin's picture

If all else fails, you could use a RaMBam abreviation, with LeschDe, or something. (or, in my case, ScAlFin)

picard102's picture

The domain is already and gets a fair bit of organic traffic.

Scalfin's picture

I meant as an alternative line of thought for the logo if you hit a wall w/ this one.

ebensorkin's picture

I think you have a good relevant direction then, apart maybe from "Fun". These designs are serious so far - except for the pinwheels.

Just for fun I made these from CMYK and C&M. Also, P22 Underground Pro

eeblet's picture

I think some of the original marks are best, and suggest that you pick your 3 favorites and work them up to [close to] perfection, then try drafting them in a few realistic contexts (letterhead, biz cards, bottom of client's site) rather than in pinwheels. :)

Best of luck! I've been failing to finish my own branding for a year now...

Live near Oakland? Now in Jack London Square on Sundays:

Paul Cutler's picture

This is such a terrible venue for such a personal project. You have nice ideas. Don't listen to others or you will be bound to question yourself, which is a bad thing in this peculiar situation. Just finish it and be done with it.


satya's picture

I really liked the No.7.

mk2's picture

I guess Mr. Paul Cutler's opinion was right. And I should appologize for misleading you to take any of my previous suggestions. It is a designer's main task to solve problems at his/her highest capacity. In this case, since no client is involved, you should be free to do anything you like with your own logo.

Of all those designs you've made, pick a few that you think the most effective as an identity. Then you could let us vote (only vote, not giving suggestions) and help you narrow it down to the final design.

Good luck! (again)

picard102's picture

I'm now working on some stationary for this logo. I've attached a collage of the options so far in the first post, but you can see them bigger at

ZUZ3L's picture

I really liked no. 5. as it looks like L & D, AND a quotation mark... I think that's good when designing visual communication?

I like the ideas of many colors in the logo as well. It's not done "right" tough I think. You might wanna take a look at .. that is, in my opinion a nice colorful logo...

picard102's picture

Alright, so I guess I should have made a separate thread for the stationary then.

picard102's picture

Well, I'm finally putting this logo to print. But after a year of using it online I'm beginning to wonder about my type paired with the logo.

Currently I use helvetica, but I was thinking about something less neutral like Gotham, but that isn't as overused as gotham is since the last election.

Is helvetica a good enough pairing, or should I try another?

Marco's picture

Although I'm drawn to helvetica, in this case maybe something with a little more personality? Also I think the type and symbol should have some kind of relation, e.g. the symbol is round, Helvetica isn't. for instance the dot on 'i'. Maybe try Avenir?

I also belief that if you go with the 'neutral sans'-route, the weight of typography and monogram in the circle should match closer. Personally I would look for a bit more difference and look for a Serif which complements the symbol.

That said, it's looking good already. Would like to see how you would apply it tyo a businesscard.

satya's picture

Two minds, similar thoughts. This guy have done something very similar to your logo.

picard102's picture

Here is where I was with the business cards before thinking about changing the type. I've never been a big fan of serif's, but I'm open to suggestions what would pair well with the monogram.

I guess it wasn't too long before someone else figured out they could put an L and D together.

apankrat's picture

I realize it's a year too late, but how about something along these lines:

Perhaps make the left stroke of D spiral even further inwards.

picard102's picture

Tried that, looked far too much like the TD logo.

designtn's picture

I would go with your visceral instinct regarding the mark, simple is better.
We all tend to over think our own designs. It's the nature of the beast.
What you have as your Typophile icon I think works well.
As for typography, maybe try a bold Helvetica?
It looks simple and classic.
I Hope hope that helps.


picard102's picture

Maybe I should just stick with Helvetica.

apankrat's picture

Estrangelo for me (except for 'g' in 'Design').

BTW, have you considered using either all caps or small caps ?

picard102's picture

Yes, I didn't think it worked out too well with most of them. Only Futura and Gotham seemed okay in all caps.

Lex Kominek's picture

Estrangelo's caps don't look too bad either.

- Lex

apankrat's picture

Both of Avenir options and Din and Gotham in small caps look decent.

Also, I'd look at Locator and, as an alternative to Sans Serifs, - at Centaur.

picard102's picture

Is there any advantages or disadvantages that I'm not seeing other then decreased readability and a general heavyness/uninviting with an all caps option?

apankrat's picture

Well, that's where it all rapidly becomes subjective. To me the all caps version actually reads better due to the greater uniformity of the letter shapes. I am not you though :) This logo is meant to reflect your traits, so in the end it only makes sense to go with what you like the best.

picard102's picture

Interesting. I was under the impression that the varying height in mixed case words allowed for easier readng, where as caps made it all one uniform shape. Your not the only one to suggest all caps though, so maybe I was mistaken.

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