My sister, Kimi, is starting up a non-profit organization in Uganda to provide sponsorship for orphans in need of schooling, clothes and food. She needed a logo and asked if I could come up with one for her. Since designing logos is one of my favorite things in the world, I was thrilled to fulfill her request. I thought I’d share a little bit on my blog about the logo design process I went through.
She hadn’t yet settled on a name, but her ideas revolved around the words Hands, Heart, Hope, and His (referring to God). I grabbed some pieces of paper and started sketching. I’m ashamed to say I only ended up with three pages, totaling a little over a dozen different ideas. It’s usually good to have more than that when sketching ideas for a logo, but unfortunately I had settled upon a favorite already, and I couldn’t get my mind to go past that idea.
Normally at this point I would take the most promising sketches and develop them a little further on the computer, but since this was just before Christmas, I had another idea: to present to my sister the raw sketches instead of more refined versions, and to make them a part of her Christmas present, which was a mix CD I had put together of missions-related songs. I designed a booklet to accompany the CD and scattered the sketches amongst the lyrics, so that she could see the various concepts and give me feedback on the ideas.
After seeing the different ideas, she decided she wanted to move forward with the main idea shown on the spread above. It happened to be the one that I had grown attached to, which was great. So the next step was to bring it into the computer, clean it up and make it digital. I scanned in the sketch and got to work in Illustrator: tracing the shapes, smoothing out the curves and balancing the line thicknesses. Perfecting the line thicknesses ended up taking longer than I expected, but despite that I still had a pretty final version within about an hour.
For the type, I wanted something that looked like it was handwritten by a kid. Something I always try to do if I’m using handwritten letters in a logo is to actually do them by hand. The number of characters in a logo is minimal, which makes custom handwriting doable, and it’s much more unique and versatile than using a font. I was working from home, but I keep my tablet at the office, so I selected a basic brush in Illustrator and resorted to drawing out the letters with a mouse instead of my preferred tablet. Using the mouse gave the letters a slightly uncontrolled look, like a kid’s handwriting, so it ended up being an advantage.
The final name decided upon was “His Hope” since it seemed to be the most unique amongst all of the combinations we could think of. We registered hishope.org and plan to have a simple webpage up there in the future. I suppose that’s my next big project for my sister’s organization, although I’d also like to attempt turning the type I’ve created for the logo into a font. I’ve always wanted to try creating a font, and I figure this might be a perfect opportunity. We’ll see if I can find the time.