Creative logo process

It is always rewarding when a graduate student gets in contact to let you know what they have been up to, and it is even more rewarding when they ask for input into a project.

I knew Elliott Hefford, who graduated from University of Suffolk in 2015, had done well for himself; landing a secure junior design role straight out of the course, pretty much as he packed up his end of year show. I had watched with interest as he progressed to middleweight and then senior designer, before going freelance in 2020. The work he was posting on Instagram throughout this time, as he first started to take on his own clients, demonstrated his love of precision and a meticulous craftsmanship that I had witnessed in him as a student.

Elliott’s proposition was that as he had a lot of the developmental and rejected logos that he was as proud of as the final versions, he wanted to put them together in a short-run publication to document what he had achieved. On asking if I could I help him with copyediting, and give feedback on the pace and structure of the content of the booklet he was planning, how could I say no?

After a meeting and several PDF and email exchanges of comments later, he has now published Elliott Creates: Logos, the first volume of what he hopes will be a series of booklets over the coming years. The result is an impressive journal of process, rationale, and beautifully crafted marks.

From my perspective, it was fascinating reading the inspiration behind the identities he was working on, and the choices he made along the way. In this, it is not only a visual joy to look, it is also a publication that reveals the inner thoughts of the design mind.

Elliott says in the opening pages: “What follows is a curated selection of unused concepts, chosen logos and close runner-ups, each idea representing a unique avenue of creative exploration and going some way towards refining my development process and style.”

Choosing to use Healeys Printers in Ipswich was a wise decision, and they have done an excellent job on the reproduction and handling of stock—the booklet is a 40 page wonder that invites the reader to pour over the content and become immersed in the creative process on show.

Each double page spread showcases a specific client project or sector. With a multitude of marks on display at once, the reader is encouraged to consider both the relational differences and similarities between each, in a comparative appraisal of one persons’ visual problem solving. Elliott’s thinking is explicit in what he says about each mark, as well as it is in the aesthetic of the logo itself.

To view more spreads or order a copy of your own, visit Elliott’s website here. I’m looking forward to Vol. 2 already.

Published by Nigel Ball

Senior Lecturer in Graphic Design

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