Case study – The story of Mediator Academy’s logo

Updated : April 15, 2016 Case Studies, Logo Design

One of the recent challenges for us was to make custom logo design for Mediator Academy. The company is involved in skill development of aspiring mediators by providing them with online course videos and interviews with experienced mediators.

Business owners usually seek the help of a professional designer to get their custom business logo design but little do they realize that their job is far from being over. Communication between the designer and the business owner is key for the most desirable outcome as no one can describe the essence of their business like the owners. Unfortunately, in many occasions, the owners end up with designers (or vice versa) who refuse to connect or communicate with them leading to umpteen iterations and unsatisfied outputs.

The client (Mediator academy) was clear about his target audience- young professionals in the mediation business mostly as their secondary career option. His brief description of the desired output involved a brand new theme that is in trend and that could help the audience associate with words such as “trustworthy” and “expert”.

Now that we have established that “communication” is the ultimate ingredient for a successful logo creation recipe, we will move on to explain how to successfully establish one. It is essential for a designer to understand the client’s business and for the client to accept the designer’s style. Pushing the boundaries of each other’s sentiments way too much will result in a disoriented output. While a perfect frequency match is not always possible between the two parties, patience and clarity of expression can do wonders. Both the parties should make the most out of the communication phase by explaining the context, asking questions and establishing the boundaries. At the end of this phase, the business owner should have a comprehensive description of the logo and the designer should have the possible routes to take.

 

As we entered into the design phase, our first thought process was to play with the word M. Being the believers of the motto “less is more”, we came up with a design that had “M” carved in just two simple colors (blue and black) and the name in a crisp font below. The client described the work as “abstract but interesting”. Though he wasn’t happy with the design he was happy with the lettering below.

 

In the second iteration, we thought of toning down the design aspect a bit and intensifying the play on the letters. We changed the colors to green and black and modified the letter “M” like two people holding hands and the “r” in the end with an extended upward arrow symbolizing progress. The client felt that it was not so accurate to his description so we started working for the 3rd iteration.

 

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This time, we tried adding some colors and art that included joyous human-like shapes (to express trustworthiness) and a dialogue box. We kept the name simple in a professional font right next to the design. Though the client didn’t like the concept of the design, he encouraged us by saying that he understands what we are trying to convey. He asked us to not use the human-like shapes and let us continue for the next iteration.

The design phases usually involve rough sketches from the designer which the client may choose for further development. The alterations may vary from something as simple as the colour to the entire structure. In case of modifications, it is important for the clients to clearly explain how differently they want the design and for the designers to understand the same. The goal of the designer at this stage should be accuracy in getting closer to the final output. Once a clear picture has arrived, the rest of the processes resulting in completion will happen in a breeze.

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On our 4th iteration, we analysed the inputs that were given to us and proceeded to take away the shapes. We got back to our original green and black theme and this time we created a design out of two dialog boxes to express “communication” and maintained the professional font. Alas! The client was still not convinced as he wanted the design to be more vocal.

 

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Even after 4 failed attempts, the client was able to understand our earnest efforts every time we submit a design and he appreciated us for that. Determined to sweep him off the floor this time, we decided to revamp the whole idea. We went to the base of our thought process again and decided to design something that exemplifies reliability and presence.

Then it struck us! Trees! Yes, as if everything fell into place, what else can describe trustworthiness more than our primary source of livelihood! We designed a slender tree that had chat boxes as leaves, a shadow for it and the name with a slightly thicker font. The client loved the logo instantaneously, approved it and praised us for revamping the whole idea to come up with such a self-explanatory design.

The most important problem that needs to be addressed is the wear-and-tear. Almost all projects starts quite enthusiastically in the communication phase. But as the implementation happens, both parties should make sure to avoid friction and frustration in actions and communication, especially when it takes longer to arrive to the desired output. A word of encouragement from the client’s side and the tone of enthusiasm from the designer’s side will go a long way in not just getting this job done faster but also for a healthier relationship for years to come.

On this journey, LogoWhistle has had the privilege of working with wonderful clients from all over the world and we take immense pride in the relationships we have built over the years. We have learned that creating a logo design requires something more than an eye for art; it requires the willingness to be open for constructive criticism, eagerness to learn from the mistakes and above all, the courage to start from the scratch when needed.

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Anusha

Anusha Sankar, the head of LogoWhistle, is a passionate web designer at heart. A computer science graduate, she has associated herself with sketching and designing quite early in her life. As a self-learner, she began experimenting with logo designs from her home and made her way into the industry with sheer passion and talent. As a professional logo and web designer she has worked in hundreds of projects and have received accolades for her unique style and creativity. Through LogoWhistle, Anusha and her team are working on identifying, emphasizing and transforming logo design as a professional service in the industry. When she is not seen experimenting with colors and patterns, this working mom can be seen running her household and experimenting cuisines in her kitchen.

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Author: Anusha

Anusha Sankar, the head of LogoWhistle, is a passionate web designer at heart. A computer science graduate, she has associated herself with sketching and designing quite early in her life. As a self-learner, she began experimenting with logo designs from her home and made her way into the industry with sheer passion and talent. As a professional logo and web designer she has worked in hundreds of projects and have received accolades for her unique style and creativity. Through LogoWhistle, Anusha and her team are working on identifying, emphasizing and transforming logo design as a professional service in the industry. When she is not seen experimenting with colors and patterns, this working mom can be seen running her household and experimenting cuisines in her kitchen.