My First Job. Critiques/Ideas needed!

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by MacDaddy901, Jun 28, 2009.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    #1
    So this is the very first graphic design job I have ever taken on. My neighbor is making a web site for a company and asked if I would come up with some logo ideas and I could make some easy money. I said yes.

    The company I am making the logo for is called Medical Growth Fund, or Med Growth Fund for short. Basically they invest in smaller companies that deal with health sciences or health services.

    I'm very new to this. I really enjoy this field and can see myself pursuing a career in it. I have a basic understanding of Photoshop and Dreamweaver (I built my high schools website) and am teaching myself Illustrator and some other programs. So any critiques, ideas, suggestions would be great.

    So far this is what I've come up with.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. macrumors 68000

    THX1139

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    #2
    Let me guess, you have no formal training in graphic design? If not, then why are you doing this for money?

    As for crit, I don't know where to begin.... Okay, your graphic elements- what do they represent? What are the relationships to each other? What message do they convey? Why did you choose those type faces? They don't relate to the graphics. And you have major kerning issues. Why blue? Do they plan to use the logo anywhere else than the website? Did you sample the blue with a PMS swatch? How does it look in black and white? I could go on...

    Maybe you should post a scan of your thumbnails so we can see what you are thinking. You did do thumbnails didn't you?

    Sorry if I'm coming off as harsh. I'm just a bit weary of people who think they can just pull a logo out of thin air because they think it would be fun. Especially those people with no formal training and then do it for hire. But, I'm especially weary of people who hire untrained people and take advantage of them.
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    kymac

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2006
    Location:
    portland
    #3
    if i could tell you one thing to help you as a designer.. it would be to make sure you have a reason behind every single element you include in the composition.. if there's no reason to something you need to get rid of it. with that being said here it goes..

    first one: i'm curious to know what the idea behind blocking the left side and bottom with the 'L' shaped line was? also why did you choose to use small caps while the text is being boxed in (the word growth).. it intrudes on the margin the text and box create.. not only that, but this really breaks the horizontal flow that the element in my first question is trying to create. the two things are competing against each other in a negative way.

    second: what is that ginormous broken circle supposed to represent? if you tried to fit this logo on a business card you wouldn't be able to read the company name because of the space required by that circle. also i'm struggling to make a connection with that typeface and the purpose of the business.

    third: i kinda don't even want to help with this one because i don't want to sound like i'm encouraging you to use it.. but, if you really liked this design and want to go through with it.. just ask your self 'why did i decide to include this unidentifiable shape as the focal point of this design?' also your kerning needs a lot of polishing.. and same problem goes with the typeface as in number two

    since it sounds like you're brand new at this.. another thing you should know is that critiquing usually only brings out the negative, you can either find offense by it, or use it to your advantage and improve your design skills. good luck!
     
  4. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    #4
    First one - no major comments, it just looks like every other generic web logo on the medical field
    second - welcome to the london underground
    third - best of the bunch but has serious text issues
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    #5
    Yes. I have no formal training in graphic design. That's why I'm coming to you guys. I have done other work for free but this one offered to pay me some serious money so I didn't turn it down.

    I want my graphic elements to be simple and clean. Professional looking. And I chose fonts that were the same. Simple and clean looking. Blue suits the medical field very well and again, I think it looks professional. And green ties in with their partner company Bio Tech.

    And yes, you do come off harsh. But thats what I expected. This is my very first job. And I am learning. And I want your opinion, weather it be good or bad.

    I should also mention I am focusing on the top and bottom. I don't like the middle one after looking at it this morning. And these aren't the final product. I'm sending these to her to see which direction to go into.
     
  6. macrumors member

    raygungirl

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    Orange, CA
    #6
    I like the last one best.

    I'm not gonna offer much advice, as I'm no professional. I took one Photoshop class in college just for the easy credit (yes, one credit) and a little bit was covered about logos. Nothing in particular was mentioned by that teacher about every bit of the logo having meaning behind it, but she was hardly a professional designer. She taught, and she restored photographs as a side job.

    As for the actual layout of the third, I think it's fine. It's not the most amazing logo ever, but I think it'll do, it looks like a logo I would see on a sign somewhere, so it's got that going for it. :) I do, however, agree about the text. There are kerning issues and I personally dislike the font, but that's just personal preference.

    You do need to keep in mind that your logo needs to be able to scale to very large and very small and still be legible. I think that last logo would get very muddied and blurry if it was on a business card, as the lines are all very close to each other. The logos also don't look like they're vector, and the logo would have to be vector or else it'd basically be useless. (Someone correct me if I'm wrong.)

    Finally, if you decide to pursue design as a career, take a few classes - or better yet, get a degree - so people don't automatically write you off as an amateur. Many people excel at professions BEFORE they have formal training, and they get the training to perfect their talent and to have a piece of paper that shows they supposedly know their stuff. Don't listen to anyone who tells you any different: you could be a natural designer, even without training. But there are certain rules you'll have to learn to be great. To truly hone your skills, take some formal design classes, and make sure you learn all the rules before you can decide to break them.

    Good luck. :)
     
  7. Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #7
    If your client has ever been to England, the second one should look very familiar to him/her.

    [​IMG]

    I would say that one of the first rules of design/art is to not copy other designs.
     
  8. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    #8
    No offence intended here but you have to remember that most of the designers who do this for a living on here have atleast some kind of training and have most likely gained some sort of debt from said training. And your 'help' would also cost money in any business too.

    There is a reason we all go and learn about design as its not just a case of picking up a computer and coming up with something.

    In your case you need to learn about typography for starters. Colours come last, your designs need to work in black and white first.

    I'll assume you did do more than 3 designs and/or even a mind map/spider diagram (or similar) and looked into current designs that are on the market already?.

    Also if you are going to come on here and say that your designs are professional looking and others in the field, that you have come to get help from, are saying that your designs aren't very good then you seriously need to look at your designs from a non biased perspective, as clearly those trained in the field have seen things that you have obviously missed.

    Maybe the critique by THX1139 was a little blunt but you have to understand that the amount of 'free' logo design that is asked of this forum alone is gradually increasing and it can be a little annoying at times when those asking for help are those who are getting paid for the work THEY are producing under a 'professional' guise.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    #9

    Yes. That is why I am coming to you. I have no formal training and you do. I want your opinion. And suggestions. NOT you to make a logo for me. That's not what I'm looking for. I am trying to gain experience. So, no I didn't come on here and say that I wanted you to make me a logo.

    I want your opinion. I don't know how else to say that. It seems like you guys take offense to people who are starting out and haven't taken design classes yet. And it seems like your pissed I'm getting paid for doing this. I'm doing this as a favor for someone who is building a website. I just want your opinion.
     
  10. macrumors 68000

    THX1139

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    #10
    Okay then, I'm going to pass on giving you any help. Come back when you have some kind of formal training or (a lot of) professional experience. I can't support anyone who does design work for pay when they haven't paid their dues. It undermines the industry and makes it more difficult for those of us (who have paid our dues) to make a living. What you are asking is ridiculous. You don't know what you are doing, so you come on here to have others tell you what you need. Are you going to split the money with everyone who helps you? Eh, I didn't think so. You're just using this opportunity to make a quick buck and take advantage of your neighbor.

    And for what it's worth. The only concept that has potential is the one that is a rip off... eh, I meant copy, of the Underground logo.
     
  11. macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #11
    Never before have I seen such a hostile group of people. My goodness. Did all the 'designers' wake up on the wrong side of the bed today or what.
     
  12. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #12
    No. All the 'Designers' know when something is not up to scratch. Call it a gut instinct… ;)

    No malice intended…
     
  13. macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #13
    Well I'll be sure the next time someone asks me for computer help on these forums to first ask if they have any training. If not, I will rip on them a bit and then belittle them then tell them no. Sound good?

    My friends have many times been fixing someone's system for pay and they come to me for assistance. I don't ask for a chunk of the change. I don't tout my training or years of on-the-job experience. I instead help them if I can otherwise say I can't because I don't know how. The whole "paying your dues" excuse is stupid. Sorry, but it is.
     
  14. macrumors regular

    bbeers

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #14
    What I think one of the big problems with untrained people, and this not a knock at them by any means, is that don't understand what they are asking for when they want some one's opinion.

    When you are asking for a an opinion/critic of work, that clearly has some strong design problem those problems gets brought to the forefront. Now this is part of the whole process that the designer looking for help wants. But when the problems with the design are very basic design problems that are taught in all design classes, people start to get offended. People are offended because the "help" you are asking for is really pointing out the problems and offering suggestions to remedy the problems. Now you fix he problems and go through a second round of "help". At this point who came up with the design. Who should get credit/paid for the design. The person who had the foresight and knowledge to address the problems, or the person who just did what other people told them to do.

    It is a different story when the design have clearly been thought through and are looking for another set of eye to assist with tweaks.

    I hope this wasn't taken personally I am just trying to explain where I, and probably other designers are coming from, when we get annoyed in untrained people getting paid to produce inferior work and bring down the whole profession in the process.
     
  15. macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #15
    I don't see how this is any different than me sitting at a computer helping people with their Mac problems free of charge. Can you explain to me how this is different? I have saved people a lot of money in tech support charges by giving them free support here and on dozens of other websites. Support that I learned from my training, and from being on the job. Should we all just adopt that attitude of "well I paid for college and you didn't so go help yourself or pay me"? Or is this some designer thing I just don't get.
     
  16. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #16
    If that floats your boat then go for it.

    It doesn't all come down just to "training" and "paying your dues" as you quaintly put it.
    Or do you think it's a case of "You pays yer money and *boom* yourra designah"?

    Comparing design — whether it be architecture, graphic, product etcetera — with doing a computer course and repairing a computer (most likely with the manufacturer's repair manual at hand) is not the same thing. ;)

    The biggest difference is that those people with the faulty computer aren't actually telling you that they *know* how to repair it, do they? And then tell you "oh, yaah, that is so easy, anyone can do that."
    Do they? ;)
    That is what p*sses a lot of people off.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    #17
    That is the whole reason for people doing the training, we learn about the basics of the field which you've never received. And anyways, you SHOULD know this, its the client who decides on a final design, not a designer :eek:

    Have you actually done ANY of the things that I've mentioned earlier, researched to make sure none of your designs are breaking copyright/trademarks or done any sort of brainstorming BEFORE starting doing the designs?

    As I've said there is a reason we take the classes, you are lacking several of the fundamentals in you designs (I've already commented on them earlier), you even ripped off one of the most iconic british logos and didn't seem to realise.
     
  18. macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #18
    Lets talk about the high level programming assistance I provide on forums, free of charge. Are you indicating that my skills are lesser than your graphical skills? My point is that he was simply asking for help. And if someone asks me for programming help, I help if I can. If I don't want to, I don't. But I don't say I have paid $X,000 for my college programming classes and until you do so I refuse to help you.

    I guess thats where we differ. The programming community is a very open, helpful community. I suppose the same can't be said about graphic designers. A lesson learned.
     
  19. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #19
    You seem to be taking this thing very personally… perhaps a lingering memory of… oh I don't know.
    *shrug*
    And neither do we… in fact if you care to *read* you'll see on other threads we 'nasty" designers actually do help.
    No. I didn't say your "high level programming assistance (you) provide on forums, free of charge are are lesser than (my) graphical skills."
    I am only pointing out that while it is both exemplary and admirable of you to be so helpful, you are comparing apples and oranges.
     
  20. macrumors 6502a

    Dal123

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #20
    Don't Listen To Them Too Much!

    MacDaddy Don't worry too much mate. The hostility is a bit of jealousy. I studied two years college for graphic design, got a BTEC National Diploma in Graphic Design. It was the biggest waste of two years of my life. Was going to study for a degree but there was those studying for a degree HND in graphics and the work they were doing was not much better.I went to a good school and learnt far more about graphics there from a great teacher, with far better facilities.
    I think the reason for the hostility is jealousy! You have already got a nice little job, freelance. Why do you need training of basic skills like typography, margin lines, co-ordinating colours (All a matter of taste and basic common sense). Sure you will come against a few problems with file types, but you'll pick this up yourself, and a few posts on here.
    Bottom line is it's mostly about taste! You won't learn that much studying. You're better off getting your own work freelance. Pay is extremely poor for the first few years and not that great after! I found it is a glamorized game. I went into construction and just starting to get my own work now with my own company and like to do the graphics for my company for fun.
    These people have really jumped out of their prams! Nothing much helpful has been said apart from a few decent comments. What relevance does your logo have to the field it's being used :rolleyes: what relevance does the london underground have to itself:D. What relevance does bt's logo have:p (you could say he's calling on the horn lol, but it really isn't that relevant) What relevance does the special K logo symbol have to do with a healty breakfast cereal. These are some of the biggest logo's out there. You can think of a million more Sony ericsson's logo.
    Jealousy is their problem!
     
  21. macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #21
    I have never responded to anyone with that kind of attitude when asking for help.

    And I gained debt from college but that doesn't mean I refuse to help people when needed.
    I guess I don't see it as comparing apples to oranges (I wanted to capitalize the word apple since I am so used to doing so on every other post here :) ). I offer support when I can in my field, contribute to no-profit open source projects, and do whatever else without expecting a dime in return. Maybe its a karma thing, who knows.

    But I will bow out now, like I said I learned something today that I was unaware of before. Lets just leave it at that.
     
  22. macrumors 65816

    SwiftLives

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2001
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #22
    OP - you made a good faith effort to show us your work before you asked for our help. I can appreciate that. You asked for guidance, rather than for us to do all of the work for you. Again, I can appreciate that.

    It's when someone asks for help without showing any indication that he has done any of the initial work himself that I have problems.

    As far as novice graphic design logos go, I have seen much worse. However, the concepts you've shown us are far from perfect. There's not much I can add to the existing critiques.

    I do encourage you to post your revised concepts and any new concepts, sketches, or explorations you'd like to share. Most of us will be happy to help.

    ------------------------------------------

    The unwritten rule I've been abiding by in regards to offering help on the design forums is this: If someone is willing to show a good-faith effort on a design project - specifically the initial conceptual work - then I will help. Otherwise, I will snark.

    Did...did you just say that you won't learn much by studying graphic design?

    And then did you say that the pay is really poor?

    I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that you fail to see any connection between those two comments.

    I'm very disappointed that "good design" to you is based solely upon whether or not a client likes the work. If that's your attitude, then perhaps design work is not a viable career for you.
     
  23. macrumors regular

    bbeers

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #23
    Do you have every Joe Somebody being payed to do your job just because they can draw and have a computer?

    I don't know how to explain this well other that to say that currently there are people who are flooding our industry and bring the industry down as a whole. So many people think that they can be designers, but lack the very basic fundamentals that are required to do the job professionally and correctly. I don't know how to liken it to your profession. I don't know if I can get you to relate other than say it is like someone coming in before you to fix a mac problem and messes things up more. Now you have to come in and the client doesn't want to pay that much because they already paid some one to do the work. Now you have to work on the cheap and not only that but you have to fix their problems before you can start fixing the whole problem.

    I am commend you for helping people with their mac problems, That is truly a great help and service you provide. I just personally feel that creative professionals often times get undermined and overlooked, because "I could do that"
     
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Dal123

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #24
    So unless someone has studied for a formal qualification they don't deserve to have a go at graphic design! And it's blatantly obvious he has done the initial work himself! Only he hasn't learnt a few hours in a measly college so he cannot call himself a designer!
    All I am saying is that it IS mostly about taste. And in England with Graphic Design; it is generally poor pay in comparisson to most other jobs! I'm not denying that there will be a few firms paying their top designers £100,000. However most outfits only pay £30,000. In England that is around average. It's not spectacular.

    The guy is only asking for a little advice! So you think you can talk down to him because you have a meaningless qualification.
     
  25. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    #25
    Wow. If most of the designers are as hostile and selfish as they are here then I might not want to go into this field. I though you guys could give me some good help, a step in the right direction. But I guess I was wrong. You would think that I was personally taking all of your work.

    I'm sorry I asked for some opinions but obviously I won't be getting any. Only belittled because I haven't taken design courses and haven't been in the business for years. And I don't live anywhere near London and I've never seen that logo. So I didn't copy it.

    So I'm scared to post these and ask for and opinion, but maybe there are some generous people out their who don't think their opinion is worth money. And by the way, I'm getting $20 for this.

    [​IMG]
     

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