I try to always remind myself the same truth throughout every project I ever do: "The client knows their business way better than I do." This has become the predominant factor in the way I go about logo design. I always work to listen to the client and to find how THEY want their logo to look, and not just to lean on my own artistic styles and opinions. I think this creates solid designer/client relationships as well as great logos. I think these logos below are some of my best and I've tried to explain the process that each logo went through below.
This is a new neighborhood built on some of the oldest family-owned land in Liberty, MO. As I looked around at other neighborhoods in the area that operated in the higher class, $300,000-$400,000 price range, I felt like too many of those logos went too on the nose for the flowery, "elegant" look. With all my logos and branding efforts, I always strive to find the simplest solution to the problem. In this case, it wasn't to add more elements or a complicated picture.
I looked at a lot of what Restoration Hardware does well in branding their furniture. They operate in a parallel market to homebuyers of this level. I modeled some things off of their style and then tried to subtly add the idea of "farm-style" living with color and element choice. Incorporating the historical "established in" information helped bring home the history of the land. I like to build a strong secondary option into my logos, and the bold H circle takes all the elements of the full logo and gives a simple, bold look that reinforces the main brand.
LIBERTY CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP
One of my first projects as a freelance designer was to rebrand the church I attend. The church was over 25 years old, but the demographic of the church had been slowly trending younger for years and was in need of a branding update. The original logo was built around a cross with a circle around it (based on a key feature of the sanctuary space), so I tried to maintain that while integrating it in a better way directly into the logo. We established new brand colors, a new font, and then got to work redesigning the many other components of the church brand around this new logo.
ELLIS CUSTOM CREATIONS
My cousin recently quit his day job and started a custom furniture business. We worked together to create a solid brand for him to work with. He wanted to aim toward a style that was somewhere around the Pinterest style while still retaining a solid, masculine feel. We created a lot of iterations, but settled on the crossed axes as an icon. I was inspired by the idea of a brand, something he could use to mark all of his work. I wanted this logo to reflect the hand-made nature of his work while still keeping a modern look. It would have been easy to default to a simple "hipster logo" with something like this, but I think the direction we settled on worked well.
SWINNEY RECREATION CENTER AT UMKC
I grew up in Kansas City. I always envisioned myself going off to some big school, having a typical college experience, and loving it. I never would've imagined I would attend UMKC and stick around my hometown. I got the opportunity in one of my classes to rebrand the UMKC rec center, and my design was chosen and implemented throughout the school. I wanted to create a logo that would be bold and could be easily converted into logos for the other offerings the rec center puts on. I used the UMKC colors and built an icon around the idea of movement that is so pivotal to a workout facility and rec center. This was a fun one to see used throughout the school and the area.
As I've grown older, my passion for serving the global Christian missions movement has grown. One of LCF's big goals is to plant churches around the world, and so they decided to brand this movement as LCF Global. Their mission is to "ignite the flame of world-wide worship", so for this one I worked on created a solid flame logo mark. I wrangled this logo for weeks looking at pictures of fires, trying to nail down how to simplify the image into something simple. In the end, this became one of my favorite logos, and being a part of this mission effort has kickstarted my own personal desire to bring the name of Christ to the nations.
THE BRIDGE COMMUNITY CHURCH
I was contacted by a church plant in Illinois to create a logo early on in their planting process. Their name was "The Bridge" and their whole mission is being the bridge so that people can meet Jesus in the context of church. Church logos are always hard because there are only so many representations of a cross that you can create. But, a bridge is a solid image, and so I tried to create a simple representation of how the cross fits into that idea of a bridge. They wanted a simpler representation of the logo that they could put on stationary and other pieces as they work on establishing the church, so I created the two secondary logos for that purpose.
GREAT PLAINS LABORATORY TEST LOGOS
My first job out of college was working for a medical lab, and one of my responsibilities there was to create logos for their tests. This is a challenge because there isn't a strong design culture within the medical testing world, so there isn't a lot of style to draw off of. I worked to establish a brand between the tests and keep certain things consistent throughout each concept. We decided to maintain the same italic font throughout that would tie each test together, regardless of the colors. Each logo works in the primary scientific/medical component that the test uses. In the medical world, there is a lot of priority placed on the correct usage of these components, so I had to create things with people closely examining the scientific accuracy. In the end, I feel I was able to create compelling logos for not-so compelling source material, and the client was really happy about it.