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Logo Design

Cartoon logo design is different than regular logo design because it requires the blending of two disciplines: logo design and cartoon drawing. The criteria for a good logo design does not necessarily apply to drawing a good cartoon, or cartoon character. A logo must be very graphical. It has to communicate at a glance and most importantly, retain its integrity across multiple applications. For example, it must look good whether it is printed on a brochure, in addition to silk screened on t-shirt, embroidered on a hat, etched on a pen or turned into a tiny avatar.

A cartoon though, it primarily drawn for a more limited set of applications. It has to look good, and retain its readability (if it includes a caption) in print and on a Web site. It's not likely to be embroidered or etched. Faxing is another application that can cause problems for both logos and cartoons, depending on how they are rendered. A clean black and white version of a logo is paramount. It's not always possible to use colors and shading, and that is why the best logos are made of solid shapes and lines. Even then, the boldness of the lines can be a factor. Extremely fine lines can look real good, adding juicy detail, on the drawing board, but when reduced in size, they can disappear or run together.

Editorial cartoons appear in newspapers and magazines, and typically have lots of detail and fine lines. The paper can handle the detail. Logos, on the other hand, have many homes, and that is why its imperative to keep them simple in construction.

I strive to create my cartoon characters with fairly bold lines and simple shapes so they can be an effective part of a cartoon logo design. Note my characters have big eyes, big smiles and simple features. That doesn't mean they can't have a lot of character though. It's also important to have a character that is endearing and likable. This is where a logo designer, who is trying to design a cartoon logo is likely to fall short. Their cartoon characters are typically stiff, unnatural and look computer drawn. I start with a pencil and paper so my cartoon characters have a more organic, natural look. Sometimes I do a lot of sketches to get just the right posture and expression.

Readability of the brand name is also critical. I've seen too many designers focus on the logo, and/or cartoon character, and fail at the typographical presentation. Typography is an art unto itself. I spent an entire semester studying the art and science of type, and how a multitude of decisions can impact readability. When people drive by a billboard showcasing your message, they BETTER be able to take away your company or brand name. You have to have a cartoon logo design that is absorbed at a glance in a nano second.

Each company name, or brand, presents a unique challenge. Long names are harder to work with than shorter names. The slogan, or tagline, also presents readability issues, yet is a critical component to reinforcing your positioning strategy.

Your logo design is the foundation for your branding, and the overall success of your business will be built around it. Make sure you get your cartoon logo design right, so you are building your business on a sound foundation, with an asset that will propel your business forward.

Logo Design

Logo design expert tells about the issues related to incorporating a cartoon character into a logo design.