iamsteve is a design and code blog, focused on designing with Illustrator and coding maintainable CSS. The blog aims to take a relaxed approach and make no assumptions when it comes to learning.
A redesign of the logo was necessary to make it feel more than a site with an occasional article here and there. This was the first step in an overhaul of the website. Getting this part right would set the way for the website redesign and everything going forward.
A lasting logo
One of the biggest challenges was to design a logo which could last. I wanted something that would adapt with the future of the website. Personal websites can be subject to a lot of chop and change.
I decided it was something which needed to reflect me better, be suitable for a range of situations and be adaptable to them.
The choice overall was personal to me, my dog Rio. A thing that helped this decision was I’ve heard in the past, your dog is a reflection of you. It helped explore the idea and feel confident with using it as the basis. It being more personal to me meant I would be less inclined to change it in the future.
As mentioned the basis for my logo was one of my dogs, this is an alternate logo using my other dog Oscar. I don’t use this throughout the website, but I use it throughout illustrations instead of the Rio version.
It’s a little bit of fun that I wanted to try convey. As the website is focused around design and code tutorials.
I sketched a few ideas, exploring different routes and just trying to get a good shape going, but remaining simple. Experimenting with some details, in the end which I left out.
Sizes & refinement
After getting the basic shape, the refinement process meant making things more geometric. As the initial shape wasn’t as good as it could be. The more geometric approach fit better with my type choice.
There are subtle differences between a few core sizes, as well as ensuring they are pixel fitted to remain sharp. These sizes form the basis for anything necessary, and covering extremely small sizes like a favicon (seen in the rightmost logo).
I have chosen a flexible colour palette, to give enough variety in tints, shades and tones for featured images and the like. Reds, dark purples and yellows are very complementary. Red has an air of confidence about it, and naturally complements yellow.
Additionally I added a green and a darker blue and green, the relation to that was in the illustrations of the collars on my dogs (seen in the logo examples earlier). This is generally down to it suits their fur colour, as strange as that may sound.
To bring a common element to the opposing red and green, the palette is tied together with yellow.
I was looking for a sans serif, typeface that was something along the lines of ITC Avant Garde Gothic, but not quite as geometric, a little softer.
Averta was spot on, I particularly like the single story ‘a’ and how the heavier weights don't feel too squashed. The other selling point was how it had true italics, many sans serif typefaces opt for oblique.