As a writer, I’m inevitably hard-wired to relish in process. Drafting. Revision. More drafting. More revision. Some editing. Another revision….
This life–and vocation, in a sense–requires a lot of bad drafts, a good bit of patience, and a certain loving-kindness toward ourselves and trust that the process will take us where we eventually need to be.
So with that, I introduce the evolution of this new-fangled logo in all its beautiful messiness. May it inspire you to revel in the disasters (and joys) that come along with creating beauty in a chaotic world.
When I first decided I wanted to create a new logo, I knew I needed to do some investigating. What did my other travel writing friends do with their logos? What makes a good logo, anyway, for a blog that’s mostly travel?
This is what I found:
Lots of Eiffel Towers, suitcases, noodle dishes, mountains, mountain climbers, wine glasses, passports, globes, compasses, old maps, new maps, airplanes, boats, cars (transportation of any kind? Check.) cameras, and stamps.
The usual traveling suspects.
At first, I asked around to see if someone could draft up a logo for me without knowing anything about me. A kind of test-run, so to speak, to see how the name “bon touriste” might be interpreted. So a friend of mine in the travel blogging world drew this up for me:
It’s cute, right? But not exactly whimsical. Beautiful. Wistful. Inspiring. And not a thing to do with traveling (metaphorically or physically, as the case may be). Too much eating and snapping Instagram photos.
In a word (or two)? Not quite. Plus, that “B”….
So, I enlisted the help of the fabulous Krystyn (we’re both from the forested, lovely lands of north Georgia and we both share unusual spellings of our shared name) of Krizzy Designs, and we went back to the drawing board. Though she’s the one who does my coding, I needed a second opinion on the design.
She asked me: What, exactly, was I trying to do with this blog? Why was I interested in moving away from blogging on my personal portfolio site, www.kristinwinet.com, and creating a new kind of identity?
Well, the answer was pretty easy: I’m not famous. My first book isn’t published (yet, yes?) and my professional life is still taking unexpected and surprising directions (for one, who ever thought I’d be getting a Ph.D.?). I’m a freelance writer, a dabbling photographer, an occasional guest speaker, but blogging there just didn’t feel right.
So, I figured: everybody else has a blog name, so why shouldn’t I?
Krystyn and I got to work. I did exactly what I do with my technical writing students, trying, in a sense, to practice what I preach, semester after semester (white space is not your enemy! simplicity is key! no more than 3-5 colors! etc….) I sketched out messy thumbnails of what I was imagining (operate word here being messy), threw together some ideas, downloaded a whole bunch of fonts I loved from Creative Market, and then wondered exactly what I was going to do with all of those fonts.
I sent everything to Krystyn and we started going back and forth with the design. We tried swirly flairs, different tagline fonts, and different colors. First, we had this:
But that wasn’t really going to work as a header because it was too round and too….skinny.
So Krystyn made these:
And I liked the white space and the purple, but I didn’t feel like the typography was quite right.
So I started playing around in Illustrator (apologies for the icky-quality image–that’s just me and my smartphone):
I really liked the idea of this font, but something about the “o” was bugging me.
And then my husband Ryan (who, yes, is an Illustrator virtuoso himself) told me I needed to simplify. No weird “type on a path” text, he said.
And then my sister and brother-in-law chimed in and told me I needed some travel flair.
And then Krystyn told me we should put dots between the words, because although they’re great together, they’re just as amazing, each one, one their own.
So I went font-shopping again (I looooove font shopping, by the way), put Dago (my new font) to work, added in some dots, drew a little plane, and voila! My little logo was born 🙂
And that, my friends, is how this whole business got started.
What’s your favorite travel blog logo? If you’ve designed your own logo, was your process as beautifully messy as mine?
Yours in design,
A big thanks to Krizzy Designs for letting me try my crazy ideas out, for letting me try more crazy ideas out, and then for finally setting up and coding bon touriste!