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H2SO4

macrumors 601
Original poster
Nov 4, 2008
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Hi all. Question for you designers. I'm looking to get a logo sorted and am wondering;
For someone that has no design experience and who isn't particularly artistic, but then isn't completely ham fisted - is it cheaper and easier to get someone else to do it for you or is it worth buying something like Photoshop and having a go?

To give you an idea, at present I'd like a 2D image of a helix fashioned into a circlular shape, with the symbol of a tetrode in the centre.

Thanks.
 
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eyoungren

macrumors Core
Aug 31, 2011
21,179
13,020
ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
How serious are you?

I ask because there are lots of options based on your intent.

There are plenty of websites that can direct you to low-skilled, underpaid, inexperienced designers who can design a logo for you. Whether the result of that is anything you want to use is debatable.

For an actual, professional designer who makes their living off their skills, experience and time you're going to have to pay. But the quality of the result will be professional. A lot of freelancers also offer professional services, but you won't get a discount.

If you do decide to do it yourself, use the right tools. Photoshop is a great image editing app, but it's NOT the tool you use to design logos. A page layout application, such as InDesign, is also not the tool for this.

You want Adobe Illustrator.

If we were on a different forum, you'd also be told to invest in a few years of design school.

Sorry if this sounds grumpy, I am not trying to be. Just relating the facts. In this, like other things you get what you're willing to pay for.
 
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H2SO4

macrumors 601
Original poster
Nov 4, 2008
4,353
3,751
How serious are you?

I ask because there are lots of options based on your intent.

There are plenty of websites that can direct you to low-skilled, underpaid, inexperienced designers who can design a logo for you. Whether the result of that is anything you want to use is debatable.

For an actual, professional designer who makes their living off their skills, experience and time you're going to have to pay. But the quality of the result will be professional. A lot of freelancers also offer professional services, but you won't get a discount.

If you do decide to do it yourself, use the right tools. Photoshop is a great image editing app, but it's NOT the tool you use to design logos. A page layout application, such as InDesign, is also not the tool for this.

You want Adobe Illustrator.

If we were on a different forum, you'd also be told to invest in a few years of design school.

Sorry if this sounds grumpy, I am not trying to be. Just relating the facts. In this, like other things you get what you're willing to pay for.
That's Ok, no offence taken. I've been trading under my own name for a little while now but have recently come to the realisation that getting bigger jobs from bigger firms requires a little more of a professional front. I've been working on large sites but subcontracting as big companies tend not to deal with sole traders.
So for now, a good but basic logo will do and that can morph into something more professional, (and expensive), later as unfortunately I don't have a few years to give to a design school.
But thanks, I'll have a google and see what pops up.

EDIT: Also, is it just me or can you not buy the package outright?
 

fig

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2012
916
70
Austin, TX
As you're probably on a Mac since you're posting here, look at Affinity Designer or Sketch in place of Illustrator. Seconded that it's worth the money to get an actual designer working on your logo though :)
 
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H2SO4

macrumors 601
Original poster
Nov 4, 2008
4,353
3,751
Not just you. Adobe moved to a subscription model with Creative Cloud. You may still be able to find Illustrator CS6 if you want to buy software outright.
Thanks man, I'll see what my options are.
[doublepost=1499590536][/doublepost]
As you're probably on a Mac since you're posting here, look at Affinity Designer or Sketch in place of Illustrator. Seconded that it's worth the money to get an actual designer working on your logo though :)
I think you're probably right as getting ideas for a final logo is difficult. I change my mind ever so slightly every day.
 

ApfelKuchen

macrumors 68040
Aug 28, 2012
3,142
1,804
Between the coasts
Speaking not as a graphic designer, but as someone who has collaborated with designers for many years...

A small shop can't hide the fact that it's small for very long, regardless of how glitzy the website or letterhead may be. It's more important to show that you're professional. A simple, well-executed logo will do better than either an elaborate, showy logo or something that looks like it was cobbled from clip art. Chances are, your enterprise will not stand or fall on its logo - the logo will become associated with the quality of the work that you do.

It's not so much a matter of being a ham-fisted amateur, it's a matter of being knowledgable enough to produce a logo that will work well in multiple formats. It should look good in the smallest size needed as well as the largest, in black and white as well as full color, in one PMS color as well as 4-color process, screen-printed on a tee-shirt or coffee mug...

It's not that you may not be qualified, but as a beginner to both the software and the process itself, you might spend weeks trying to come up with something perfect, only to learn afterwards that your design won't reproduce in certain media. Or you'll be so emotionally involved in the process that you can't finalize the design. Meantime, a pro will incorporate all his/her accumulated know-how in producing a logo that is both aesthetically pleasing and easy (and economical) to reproduce in a variety of media, in a short period of time. In the meantime, you can be applying your already-developed talents in a more productive manner.
 
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chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,192
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If we were on a different forum, you'd also be told to invest in a few years of design school.
The OP is getting told that here too. The designer's skills, experience, and education are what one pays for when hiring a designer. Knowing how to operate software is the easy part of this process.
[doublepost=1499686526][/doublepost]
Hi all. Question for you designers. I'm looking to get a logo sorted and am wondering;
For someone that has no design experience and who isn't particularly artistic, but then isn't completely ham fisted - is it cheaper and easier to get someone else to do it for you or is it worth buying something like Photoshop and having a go?

To give you an idea, at present I'd like a 2D image of a helix fashioned into a circlular shape, with the symbol of a tetrode in the centre.

Thanks.
Do you want cheap and easy or do you want a good logo? Hiring a good designer is a better investment than buying a software package, since as you say, you have no design experience. A viewer doesn't look at a good designer's work and think "wow, he or she really knows how to work Photoshop/Illustrator/Indesign."
 
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960design

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2012
2,820
831
Destin, FL
Hire a designer that matches with your style. I like using something along the lines of:
99designs.com ( nothing to do with me ), they just happen to have an almost cool name, but some seriously good designers.

Sure it costs a little bit, but the multitude of designs you get are amazing. You get to tweak the design as the 'contest' is going on, to ensure you get exactly what you are looking for.
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,192
2,522
Hire a designer that matches with your style. I like using something along the lines of:
99designs.com ( nothing to do with me ), they just happen to have an almost cool name, but some seriously good designers.
This is just a place that gets people to do spec work for free with the hope that perhaps they won't be working for free if their design happens to win a "contest."
 
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960design

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2012
2,820
831
Destin, FL
This is just a place that gets people to do spec work for free with the hope that perhaps they won't be working for free if their design happens to win a "contest."
Not sure of your point. But thank you for pointing out that these people will really do a fantastic job as it may lead them to something more and adds a mark on their resume. I utilize college students for programming and music for software as well.

Is it necessary we hire a John Resig for every project? Is it necessary we hire Snake to mix the music? Not at all.

PS. I understand if you are a designer how sites like this would irritate you. It is only a few short years away before programming is completely taken over by computers. I'll be out of a job, but you as an artist will always be needed.
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,192
2,522
Not sure of your point. But thank you for pointing out that these people will really do a fantastic job as it may lead them to something more and adds a mark on their resume. I utilize college students for programming and music for software as well.
Do you ask several college students to do programming and music to work for free and then only pay the one whose work you like best? That's what sites like 99designs are doing. It's bad for everyone.
 
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H2SO4

macrumors 601
Original poster
Nov 4, 2008
4,353
3,751
The OP is getting told that here too. The designer's skills, experience, and education are what one pays for when hiring a designer. Knowing how to operate software is the easy part of this process.
[doublepost=1499686526][/doublepost]
Do you want cheap and easy or do you want a good logo? Hiring a good designer is a better investment than buying a software package, since as you say, you have no design experience. A viewer doesn't look at a good designer's work and think "wow, he or she really knows how to work Photoshop/Illustrator/Indesign."
Ok, take your point. Initially I was thinking that start simple and evolve. (Much like a lot of the logos we have for large companies today - they seldom look identical to when first penned).
[doublepost=1499754195][/doublepost]
Speaking not as a graphic designer, but as someone who has collaborated with designers for many years...

A small shop can't hide the fact that it's small for very long, regardless of how glitzy the website or letterhead may be. It's more important to show that you're professional. A simple, well-executed logo will do better than either an elaborate, showy logo or something that looks like it was cobbled from clip art. Chances are, your enterprise will not stand or fall on its logo - the logo will become associated with the quality of the work that you do.

It's not so much a matter of being a ham-fisted amateur, it's a matter of being knowledgable enough to produce a logo that will work well in multiple formats. It should look good in the smallest size needed as well as the largest, in black and white as well as full color, in one PMS color as well as 4-color process, screen-printed on a tee-shirt or coffee mug...

It's not that you may not be qualified, but as a beginner to both the software and the process itself, you might spend weeks trying to come up with something perfect, only to learn afterwards that your design won't reproduce in certain media. Or you'll be so emotionally involved in the process that you can't finalize the design. Meantime, a pro will incorporate all his/her accumulated know-how in producing a logo that is both aesthetically pleasing and easy (and economical) to reproduce in a variety of media, in a short period of time. In the meantime, you can be applying your already-developed talents in a more productive manner.
Ok, good points made. I'll make some professional enquiries and take from there thanks, I'll just stick to basic sketches to get my point across.
 

fig

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2012
916
70
Austin, TX
Not sure of your point. But thank you for pointing out that these people will really do a fantastic job as it may lead them to something more and adds a mark on their resume. I utilize college students for programming and music for software as well.

Is it necessary we hire a John Resig for every project? Is it necessary we hire Snake to mix the music? Not at all.

PS. I understand if you are a designer how sites like this would irritate you. It is only a few short years away before programming is completely taken over by computers. I'll be out of a job, but you as an artist will always be needed.
If I had a dollar for every "this could lead to something more" I've been pitched I'd have more money than I ever made on the "something more".

Hiring a college student to work on something cheaply is very different than asking a bunch of people to do work on the chance one of them will get paid. Not to mention lots of those people don't know what they're doing, are on pirated software, and the chances you'll get a logo that's stolen/clipart/already being used by someone else is reasonably high.

There's lots of reads on why crowdsourcing design is a bad idea both for clients and designers, here's a good start:
https://crowdfavorite.com/crowdsourcing-your-brand-design-the-math-just-doesnt-work-out/
 
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960design

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2012
2,820
831
Destin, FL
Do you ask several college students to do programming and music to work for free and then only pay the one whose work you like best? That's what sites like 99designs are doing. It's bad for everyone.
Ahh, I see your point.
I pay them all fairly, by no means industry standards, but fairly. In my mind it helps them get started and I get a couple of extra code hours out of it.