I'm a total beginner interested in learning graphic design, but don't know where and/or how to start.
I have the basic programs and all, but I don't know how I should be practicing and going about understanding the program.
Graphic Design Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for Graphic Design professionals, students, and enthusiasts. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
Do you have illustrator? There are many resources for basic illustrator tutorials. Also there are many guides and instructions for logo basics, theory and application.
To start I would collect logos you like and try to copy them with basic shapes and colors. Then I would try to make your own logos for made up companies. Many pros do this to have examples in their portfolio.
Some of my logo basics: it should be simple enough to be legible in black and white, from a bad scan, read upside down and clear at 2 inches.
Before designing a company logo you should do a lot of research about what the company wants in a logo, what the company does and the general vibe of their company and industry, and design towards these goals.
Ideally your logo will incorporate a metaphor for the company's work. It should show what they do in a visual metaphor, and this is the trickiest part. Like a dentist office might use a tooth in a subtle way.
I was trying to understand why don't you simply study a graphic design career... I'm graphic designer graduated and I can tell you that they are so many things you look on the university that you can't learn studying by yourself. On the other hand I can help you a little bit... to start on the graphic design world I recommend you first start reading some books like:
You need to look to the basics of graphic design... Principles of color, Theory of form, system of grids, photography theory, geometry, typography basics.
To make a logo:
...a good logo is as smart as possible.
when you really learn about graphic design basics... and they live in your mind as principles, then you need to start research... you need to know about modern logos, modern softwares and just refresh all that knowledge to what is actually working on the market, as a graphic designer I usually look for another partner's profiles with awesome skills, they always have tips for me to update my own skills and knowledges.
Be smart, be creative as possible, be curious.
I resume all with this word: communication, learning to communicate is the key to being a good graphic designer. Then, start communicating.
Try and create yourself a design brief then look at all the galleries try and train yourself to understand what a good logo is such as colour combinations, typography and the simplicity. Behance is a good place to start. Then you can move onto sketching some ideas out on paper for logos, then once you have some good directions to explore, scan it in or take a photo and get it on to the computer ideally a Mac. Adobe Illustrator is the best program for developing logos as it's a vector program meaning they can be scaled up and down no problem without losing quality. Create lots of variations and think about why one design is better than another and keep refining it. Simpler is better, if the design doesn't need it then it's just clutter
Brief > Find inspiration > Sketch > Adobe > Refine
Hope that helps
You can start on this website: Hack Design to get a jump start.