Logo is the indispensable part for your business both online and offline. It represents appearance, unique identity and recognition of your business. A well-designed logo leaves a nice impression to customer, which is potentially promoted to your business; a worse logo only drives customer away.
So how to design an excellent logo is the concern for both designer and business owner. Today I am going to share how to design a cute snail logo, which is converted from a simple letter B. More importantly, I will share some important design skills and tips according to my own experience as well as my inspiration.
Before getting started
There is something I want to mention before getting started. As a graphic designer, it is advisable to know your weapon—design programs. I own several programs, and I know the best part of each of them. According to my experience, different programs are specialized in one part or another. I like to take best advantage of each program to finish my project, which simplifies workflow significantly.
Considering the skills in this logo, the program I use is Sothink Logo Maker Pro. Some key functions in this vector design program are suitable for this snail logo. So are you ready? Let’s get started.
What we are going to create
This logo is designed by Mirroking.
“The transformation between letter and animal shape is like a game amazing me. I tried to reshape the lying letter “b” to a snail vector graphics and it indeedly took me less time than to directly draw the shape. The “Pen” function in Logo Maker Pro helped me a lot.”—Mirroking
Step 1: getting started
First you need to download Sothink Logo Maker Pro. The installation process is fairly easy which only takes several clicks, so I’m not gonna repeat that. After opening Logo Maker Pro, click Add Text button and input B in Quicksand Bold font. If you don’t have Quicksand Bold font, download here; copy to My Computer-C-Windows-Font file.
Change font size to 96, right click B and choose rotate with “-90” degree; so the letter is laying down.
Step 2: convert text to shape
Right click letter B and select Text to Shape. So we convert text to shape for further editing. This step looks simple, but it is really important step in this logo; and not only in this logo, but also in all vector design projects. So here I’d like to share some text to shape tips in vector design:
Why is “text to shape” important in vector design?
Because different people have different fonts. For example, as a designer, you may have various fonts; but meanwhile, as ordinary people, they don’t have as many fonts as designers. So when people open you logo, the original fonts cannot be shown. To solve this problem, the designer used to convert specific text to shape. As you know, shape can be shown in any device. Thus, the logo can be shown correctly on any computer.
Another reason is further editing. Text is one of the most important resources in logo design. But sometimes it only provides the basic frame, like human skeleton. We need to add blood, flesh and nervous system to make it live (sorry for the inappropriate metaphor LOL), which means further editing. We need to make our work outstanding by reshape, add effect, color and etc. That’s why “text to shape” is a frequently used function in all the vector design programs.
“Text to shape” in different design programs
Adobe Illustrator is the most commonly used vector design program. We have seen so many excellent works designed by AI in Vector tuts. In AI, you can find “Create Outlines” in right click menu after selecting text, and reshape text by dragging anchor points.
Please forgive me by listing Photoshop here. Because all we talk about is vector design, and Photoshop is all about bitmap. But what I trying to say is that the basic principle is the same.
After inputting a text in Photoshop, it is treated as a layer; you can only do some basic edit to that layer such as rotate or scale. If “converting to smart object” after right click the layer, you can do advanced edit such as skew, distort, reshape and etc.
How does “text to shape” work in Sothink Logo Maker Pro?
Back to the vector design program we use now, text to shape is one of the most practical functions in Logo Maker Pro. Before text converted to shape, you can edit text by change content, add stroke and fill in color. As long as the text converted to shape, you can treat it with any advanced operation except for changing text content.
Step 3: reshape letter B to snail
Since we convert it to shape, B is no longer a text; it’s a shape. So now we are going to reshape to snail. Choose Pen- tool to reduce anchor point; Subselect Shape B and drag anchor point to form a little hook tail. Something like this:
Now we are going to reshape body and head. Choose Pen- to delete anchor points mentioned in screenshot, drag the remaining points to make the body and head as natural as possible. There is no technical difficulty; all you need is patience and carefulness. Keep dragging and adjusting until it looks like a snail.
Tips for reshape in Logo Maker Pro
In the previous step, the main tools I use for reshape letter B are Pen and Suselect. They are the ideal combination in vector drawing and reshape. Here are the tips I want to share according to my own experience.
Pen can be used for drawing; more importantly, there are Pen+ and Pen- for you to add or delete anchor point. This is really important because it enables you to reshape with Subselect as you like.
As for Subselect, you can drag anchor point to change outline of target. In Logo Maker Pro, there are square anchor point and round anchor point. Round point is located between two square points. Drag square point to control the two lines beside, drag round point to change radian.
Step 4: add antenna to snail
Now we are going to add antenna to snail. Choose Round tool to draw two round shapes on canvas, fill in with black with no stroke. They serve as antenna, which make the snail looking real. Something like this:
Step 5: decorate helicoid
A real snail has natural grain on helicoids, so we are going to decorate its helicoids. One of great things of Logo Maker Pro is various kinds of resources. You can take best advantage of resources to simplify workflow.
Drag screw grain from Shape-Curve category to canvas, rotate its direction and put it inside the shape B. so something like this:
Step 6: color it
Now we are going to fill the logo with colors. Select snail and color it with green, the color we use is #79C32D; select screw grain and color it with pink, the color we use is #E77F8C.
Step 7: add text and background
Select Add Text and input “Snail” in FieldDayFilter font, choose the same color with snail and add reflection effect.
Since we can’t add effect to blank canvas directly, we need to find a way out. Drag a square shape from Shape Geometry category as background. Set it as the last layer in Layout menu, fill in with shallow yellow (#FDFEC1) and apply with last effect in Gradient.
There you go. It’s finished. Let’s export the work. This program support different export formats like JPG, PNG and SVG. SVG format is advisable. It is vector and you are not going to lose any quality while zooming in and out.
From this logo design tutorial, we can see the most important design skill is text to shape. It is a common application in vector design. We take advantage of the program to convert letter to shape, and use other functions to reshape it to a nice looking logo. I hope you not only learn how to design this snail logo, but also learn some vector design conception and skills in a broad sense. I hope you like it.