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Is this so bad??

Discussion in 'Graphic Design & Logo Design Critique:' started by garywaiman, Oct 21, 2011.

  1. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    Hey guys

    I have spent a few hours working on a logo/namestyle concept for a local business (party-planning) and while I saw it as a massive improvement on her original logo, the business owner was not keen on my design, even though in my eyes, it meets her requirements. She wanted an air of sophistication while keeping it simple and was keen to have a cocktail glass as a part of the design. Also needed the name of the business to be prominent. I even made sure it worked in reverse colour scheme as she preferred a black background.

    I know that clients are not obliged to automatically like everything we put to them but seeing how she felt it was fine to use the abomination that was designed for her before, I'm struggling to understand how she couldn't approve my design (I'm trying not to sound like I'm blowing my own trumpet but I am sure that my redesign is better than the original).

    I know that I should be taking rejection a damn sight better than this - but being jobless for so long and struggling for choices in taking my design career further, this has been a major slight in my already-fragile confidence.

    I know my design is not some ground-breaking concept but for the size of her business, I feel it would work well and fulfils everything that she needs. Is it really so bad??

    (I have linked her original logo - the one with the glass in white was "designed" by a designer and she changed the colours in the alternative one. My redesigns are also attached in both white and black reverse).


    Designed by a designer for Cocktail Queen


    Colours changed by the business owner herself


    My design


    My design in reverse
  2. Do you really need the glass and crown? The type mark works well on its own. The extra artwork is just clutter, and defeats the possibility of any real symmetry or composition.
  3. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    The glass and crown was really there to satisfy the client's wants. I would be happy to do without it, I prefer making namestyles.
  4. peterjmay

    peterjmay New Member

    i like the 3rd one

    ARRIVALS Well-Known Member

    If I'm honest, whilst the original logo is pretty ugly and yours are a vast improvement, I wouldn't say your designs answer the brief. They don't say sophistication to me. It's just way too busy. The typeface, the glass, the olives on stick, the crown, the eyes and eyelashes for the e's etc.. There's just too much going on.

    I like the shape of the glass. It could be thinner in some places but it looks good. I'd stick with that on it's own and a nice sophisticated looking typeface with it. None of the extra bells and whistles you currently have.

    You should also remind her, she came to you for a logo. Sure, it's great when clients have their own ideas but I wouldn't just do what she wants. Offer her some alternatives that you think work better.
  6. Dave L

    Dave L Well-Known Member

    Way too much going on and none of it hanging together particularly well (lose the tricksy stuff going on in the lettering for starters).

    On the broader point, I don't think you're doing yourself any favours at all by expecting criteria like (and I know I'm paraphrasing here) 'better than the shit logo you had before' and 'good enough for a poxy little business like yours' to result in a happy client.
  7. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    I appreciate the blunt comments Dave. In truth, this is not so much a client as just someone who mentioned on their Facebook page that they had a new logo but their friends didn't like it. So I simply offered to knock one up for them (sorry Arrivals, for not making that clear previously).

    My frustration simply derives from the fact that it was dismissed out of hand. My comments on her logo and the company were borne out of a heavy knock to my confidence.

    My design was possibly an amalgamation of attempting to fulfil everything that she wanted in the logo.
  8. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    Also to clarify, the comment I made about "the size of her business" was in reference to my belief that if you are a smaller business, it is more beneficial to use clear indicators of what you do and to include the company name as part of the logo rather than a less-obvious abstract graphic. It was in no way an attempt to undermine the business size or its status.

    Although I do accept that I was a tad belittling of her previous logo, that comment came from her willingness to use that previous logo for over a year and yet turn my logo away without much thought (hence the reason for this thread in the first place). Again, it did come across as being arrogant but the true intention was far from it - I'm hardly in a position to be arrogant about anything.

    ARRIVALS Well-Known Member

    Here in lies the problem with working for free. As they're not paying for anything they can just say no to anything that they see. If they're paying for it they're more inclined to look at other ideas and work together towards a final solution.
  10. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    That's true, I suppose I could take that little slice of wisdom from this. :icon_rolleyes:
  11. pcbranding

    pcbranding Member

    I think there's too much going on to fall into the camp of 'sophisticated' and if the glass must stay then I'd completely remove all styling from the type.
    Putting the type on one line and the cocktail glass centred above it would be a good start.

    Try looking at restaurant/hotel identities.
  12. Would you tell a heart surgeon how to operate on your heart?....No, You leave it to the professional.

    At the end of the day your doing it for free and so you should tell her what would work best, otherwise its not worth the possibility of it harming your portfolio..

    Free work and too many tacky demands from the client isn't good.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2011
  13. Also what program are you using?
  14. spottypenguin

    spottypenguin Active Member

    Ok this is going to be harsh but so be it. Irrespective of working for free or not IF I had asked for a logo design and specified "sophisticated" and received your design back, I'd tell you to do one. That is borderline clipart / a bad example of a cartoon attempt logo.

    I'd agree with you that it is a slight improvement on what she has but come on, go and google logo inspiration or existing cocktail / bar logos. What you have done, I'm afraid, is very amateurish looking. Too busy, too heavy handed; doesn't look like a lot of thought has gone into it etc. etc.

    Unless you are delivering absolute excellence I wouldn't complain about a client (albeit free) disliking your work. Yes, what she has now sucks but at least she has realized it needs drastically improving. It's her business, I think she has every right to expect a decent logo after the mistake of the one she has now.
  15. Squevasquidge

    Squevasquidge Member

    Im sorry I have to agree with Spottypenguin. I think it looks could do with alot of improvement. I think it looks cliparty and thats def not sophisicated. Why dont you try more delicate lines and less of the gimicy stuff (eyes etc). If I were you I'd go back to the draawing board and have another go picking out parts of your orginal maybe.
  16. spottypenguin

    spottypenguin Active Member

    I have had a look at your "client's" website and it leaves a hell of a lot to desire on the sophistication front but she is obviously wanting to up her image so fair play to her. But I really think you need to start from scratch, the earlier suggestion of the text on one line with a glass centralised above is a good one. This is far from perfect, in fact it took me all of 5minutes but as a starting point this is infinitely more "sophisticated".

    Get sketching, forget gimmicks, think "class"

    Attached Files:

    • CQ.jpg
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  17. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    Appreciate the bluntness Penguin, I really do. I am not normally so defensive about my work, and I always take constructive criticism very well, no matter how harsh it is. Not that I should be making excuses but my outburst (I have deducted) was due to a lot of confusion and lack of activity in my career and life. Frankly, I look back on the opening post in this thread and cringe a bit. Because I knew at some level that the logo I designed was not a "sophisticated" one but I did aim it as a concept for the "cocktail queen" to pick at and get a better idea of what she wanted. But then for her to turn it down and then cut off ties did hurt my pride slightly. Hence the outburst.
  18. garywaiman

    garywaiman Member

    Didn't spend too long on these, ripped your layout Penguin but it's now more a personal exercise in trying to design something "sophisticated". :icon_smile:

    cocktail queen 11.png

    cocktail queen 12.png

    cocktail queen 12 reverse.jpg
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2011
  19. Tony Hardy

    Tony Hardy Well-Known Member

    Have you tried it with the crown above the glass (straight, of course)? That doesn't say crown to me at the minute, I didn't get it in the first instance and it still doesn't immediately strike me as a crown.

    Your second attempts are much much better, yet I still think there's a bit of work to be done if you're going to pursue it, they look a little unbalanced?
  20. Carmen Davies

    Carmen Davies New Member

    I believe that part of our role as designers is to constructively sell our ideas to clients. ie: not putting their ideas or business down and promoting the reasons for them to use our experienced eye for good design. Yes, you do have to let the client have an input and fulfill there brief but this does not mean designing something you are less than happy with.

    For me there is way too much going on in this logo, I would strip some of the elements away and work on the typography and remember to sell, sell, sell your idea.

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