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Logo Context: For an outdoor equipment company that is developing specialized gear for hiking, climbing, and backcountry skiing. Aiming for a design style similar to the fjallräven logo, with a little mountain climbing character to give the brand some personality. Main concern is keeping it simple enough for a logo that will potentially be embroidered/printed etc.

Logo Design Options

I'm a bit new to logo design, so this has taken me a few (200+) iterations... But I'm finally getting to a point where I'm happy with the logo. I've been staring at illustrator too long now though, so I would really appreciate an outside perspective on which direction is best, and what could be improved, simplified, or changed to finalize this. Thanks so much!

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    :) This feels like a game of "can you spot the differences" :) – Scott Jul 14 at 21:07
  • Haha @Scott, very true. I guess I've stared at them so long that they seem pretty different to me! – luokiteltu Jul 15 at 0:07
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    My only real concern is "why is that giant rat climbing a mountain?" – Tetsujin Jul 15 at 7:37
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    can you edit you question to add a bit more context? what is that animal supposed to be? "which direction is best" is a bit too broad, check the guidelines for critique questions and adjust your question to be more specific. – Luciano Jul 15 at 8:43
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I understand immediately what type of company this logo is for, so well done on that perspective!

My main concern is that the character looks so different and almost de-attached from the mountain: You have these thick outlines and bold, harsh lines on the mountain and soft, round lines on the character, so that it almost looks as from a different logo entirely. I know that you've probably done that on purpose, but it doesn't really work here.

I'd try to redraw the character in the style of the mountain instead, with straight lines, as a solid black silhouette with only the white eye and with the ears for readability (to make it clear at first glance that it is an animal) but nothing else. It's already clear that this is for outdoor equipment imo, so no need for backpack etc.

I'd also avoid strong shapes in the empty space between the legs because there's such high contrast there. Like in your examples the half-circles make it almost look like there are two suns rising behind the mountain. Try a thinner tail to avoid the snake-like appearance and to make it look less like a building or bridge on the mountain. Maybe an irregular triangle as the eye instead of a point works better and gives it a more "sporty" look.

In terms of sizing and spacing I think the bottom right one is almost there. The "HI" seems a bit close to the mountain and I'd try to separate the entire text a bit more from the graphic. Bottom left has to much black space and i don't like the cut off left edge in comparison - it looks way less dynamic. Top left is too pointy imo. Instead of whiskers you could try thicker lines/little polygons, detached from the animal (almost like sunrays) to emphasize the face area/mountain top area. I hope you get the idea...

All in all nicely done but not right there yet.

Hope my comments are clear and at least somewhat helpful.

  • Fantastic feedback, thank you so much for taking the time to write that out! I can see the mismatch in styles between the character and the mountains, that's a great point. I'll try redrawing the character in that style, or maybe redrawing the mountains in the style of the character too just to see what looks better. Interesting point on the strong shapes in the empty space between the legs, I'm not sure how to avoid that but I'll give it a try. Great ideas on the tail and eyes too! I think I like the bottom right one most as far as sizing goes too. Thank you so much! – luokiteltu Jul 15 at 16:05
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The creature with round forms doesn't sit well with the angular mountain. The moustache and the non-fitting form together can rise unwanted ideas like this:

enter image description here

If there must be something above the mountain (I guess a little more symmetric mountain alone would be ok), it can well be a hiker or something in the sky like the sun, birds or another, but more distant mountain.

The hiker should advance to the right. A rough example:

enter image description here

In the future the same hiker can be used as a recognizable character also elsewhere, so it needs some special attention. It should in that case be the heaviest part in the logo.

If you already have decided to take one of your presented versions, let it be the bottom right one. This is only an opinion, like my preceding writings.

  • Brilliant, thanks you so much for the detailed feedback and the example illustrations here! I think you're right on the mismatch in styles between the mountain and the character, and having the character go towards the right is probably a better call too. I like the hiker idea as well, I'm not completely sold on it yet but I'll experiment with a few designs around that idea too. Thanks again for the great feedback! – luokiteltu Jul 15 at 15:54
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Looks a bit unfinished:

  • i prefer the non-modified typo bottom left version
  • the mountain is too heavy, too much black fill. add some more white or simplify the mountain shape
  • the weasel thing is kind of cartoonish. simplify the shape, google 'animal icons' and see what that means. not really sure you need the weasel really, but that's your choice
  • Got it, thanks so much for the feedback. I'll work on making the weasel thing a bit simpler, and balancing the "weight" of the mountains. I think I'll end up keeping the weasel thing because a mountain on it's own isn't very unique, but I can see it working without that too. Thanks again! – luokiteltu Jul 15 at 16:00

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