Logo Design Tutorial to Design a Charity Logo

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This post is a logo design tutorial following the logo design process I used to design a free charity logo (final logo at the bottom of post)

Last year I did a free logo design for a charity called Beach within Reach. Beach within reach aims to provide special wheelchairs capable of going onto the sand to disabled people at no charge for the day. Some of the people and children may never otherwise be able to go on to the beach due to the cost of hiring a wheelchair. The brief came from one the mums of a child who had benefited from the charity Debbie Fifield. Please check out their facebook fan page if you would like to offer your support to the charity.

First step was to send a list of questions to find out the type of logo they were looking for

The Logo Design Brief Questions

  • Your company name – as it should be used on the logo design
  • Strap line to go with your logo – if required
  • Please provide a little information about what your company does
  • Key words that describe your company – eg. friendly, reliable
  • What do you like/dislike about your current logo (if you have one)? Please can I see it.
  • Who are your competitors/Other Charities in the same field please give links if possible?
  • “Look and feel” required such as contemporary/traditional/brash/minimal/corporate/fun/
  • Any definite ideas you have about the logo design + examples of logo design you like/dislike (links if possible)?
  • Who is your Target audience?
  • Colour preferences if any. Should the logo be single colour/two colour/full colour/no specific preference?
  • How/where will the logo be used?
  • Any other information you would like to add

The questions were answered in the form of an email

To get more of an idea of what the wheelchair is used for, a google search of Landeez will bring up lots of videos and information. We are a fun, easygoing charity who’s aim is to get people in wheelchairs on to both the beach and into the sea, as many wheelchair users will never have experienced either. There is no-one in competition with us as it is a really unique charity providing a very worthwhile service. We need to continue fundraising to maintain the wheelchairs, purchase more as required (approx £4,000.00 each) and to really promote what we have. We also want to increase usage by offering them to schools/groups for the disabled within London and the South-East, then during Spring and Autumn a whole class/group of disabled children or adults could get to go on the beach which for many could be their first time ever. We really would like to have the beach on the logo and a fun version of the chair, but obviously all within a very simple form. I don’t think a strap line is necessary but we are open to any suggestions/help you have to give.

I have attached 2 photos of my son last summer, (I think the pictures say it all really) the wheelchair was absolutely vital to his enjoyment and when I heard the charity may have to dispand due to lack of interest from committee members, a couple of the mums and I took it on. The logo will be used on everything from collecting tins, t-shirts, flyers, right through to the website and everything.

charity logo design

Next step some basic research

The next step of the logo design process was to do a search to see the type of logos other charities use (above) and also find some images of the wheelchairs in question and some beach based images (below). I collected these images together and then dropped them into iphoto so hey were easy to view and print out.

wheelchair pics

Brainstorming for Logo Inspiration

Although I felt that the best route for the logo was probably was going to be an iconic/graphic version of someone using one of the wheelchairs I knew I needed to forget this for a least the brainstorming stage in order to try and not rule anything out. On the mind maps I used doodles as well as words to try an stimulate more ideas.


Logo Design Sketches

I worked at sketching out some possible options for the logo and scanned some of them in to work up.

logo sketches

Drawing up the logos in black and white in illustrator

I worked in illustrator to try work up the logos, first starting in black and white.Working In black and white let’s you concentrate on shapes and typography and not worry about colours which might distract. Don’t underestimate the helpfulness of showing your logos to a designer friend, I did. Usually a fresh eye can help you see what is and isn’t working.

black and white logos

Drawing up the logos in colour in illustrator

I then worked up my preferred logo design options in colour.

colour logo design

Showing the logos to the client

I showed some of the colour logos to the client and they picked the purple and cyan one with the addition of a strap line

final logo design

learn logo design online

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  1. Posted November 5, 2010 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    It was very nice of you to do the logo for free Tara and the final logo looks really good. Love the colours you have used here too.

  2. Posted November 8, 2010 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    Thanks Firebubble

  3. Posted November 10, 2010 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    Very clear description, inludes step by step brainstorming. Thanks for sharing this. Follow your instruction, I’ve made a logo by my own for my clothing shop, named “Renommeé”.
    That’s a great experience. Thanks a lot!

  4. Posted November 10, 2010 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Its really nice to see the process you have used to create your logo. Its a great design, the colours chosen are bold and it stands out well. I think its brilliant you did it all for free for a charity.

  5. Duncan Jones
    Posted November 11, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Really enjoyed this Tara. It was great to follow your process for creating a logo that not only had to look good but also need to fulfill a brief and convey a message all at the same time.

  6. Posted November 11, 2010 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    I think the client chose the best one – nice logo. I see you’ve done a black and white one, but (being retro) I wonder if you’d need to tweak it for a fax version using solid blacks only. Perhaps a white keyline around the touching shapes.

  7. Posted November 12, 2010 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    Great logo design. It can be quite challenging to grasp what the customer really want to convey with their logo, but I think you captures it perfectly, way to go, Congrats!

  8. Posted November 12, 2010 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    thanks Hilary

  9. Posted November 12, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Duncan and thank for interviewing me for your http://www.clothes2order.com site

  10. Posted November 12, 2010 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Amelia

  11. Posted November 13, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Nice work.

    One good tip I read was to show your client the logos at the black and white stage, rather than the colour one, as they are going to be rather biased towards colour themselves.

  12. Sarah James
    Posted November 15, 2010 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Very clear description, inludes step by step brainstorming. Really enjoyed this. It can be quite challenging to grasp what the customer really want to convey with their logo, but I think you captures it perfectly, way to go.

    Once again Thanks !

  13. Posted November 15, 2010 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    I really like your process of designing logo. Its very smart way to you used ie draw logo black and white and then fill it with colors.

  14. Posted November 15, 2010 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

    Great tutorial. It’s great to see the thinking process that other designers go through. All I seem to do nowadays is logos. :)

  15. Posted November 18, 2010 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    Hi Rico, Morris – I really find that designing in black and white simplifies the process. Thanks for your comments.

    Hi Sarah – Thanks I am glad you enjoyed reading :)

    Hi Rachael – Thanks – “All I seem to do nowadays is logos.” you’re lucky, they are usually nice to do.

  16. Posted November 19, 2010 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    That was a great tutorial, have been looking for somehting like this for an hour now and finally found it. The logos loog great.

  17. Posted November 22, 2010 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Very nice article / tutorial. I scrolled down slowly, and would have picked the same logo also :-) Great result. Really like your blog!

  18. Posted December 6, 2010 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    This is fascinating, to see your design process through all its stages – I would have chosen the purple and cyan one too! Really stunning finished design.

  19. Posted January 11, 2011 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Hi Tara,
    Quite a great post. I am amazed to see your graphics design strategy. A complete and perfect logo design tutorial for designing a charity logo.

  20. Posted February 27, 2011 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    What a great tutorial!

    I can see why the client chose the logo they did as it is simple and shows the fun that their product can help provide

  21. Posted April 12, 2011 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    Nice to see the research and thought process that leads you (and the client) to the final logo.

  22. Posted April 18, 2011 at 10:52 am | Permalink

    I think the key part of your process here is that original email. You have some great questions (which I am sure comes from many years of experience) in terms of the information you are looking for. If you can get the right information out of the client at outset you find yourself being in a much better position to deliver the results the client wants through providing a genuine personal service. It is refreshing to come across someone whom really knows their stuff and how to elicit the right information from clients.

  23. Posted February 15, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Every step that you have given tara is quite illustrative and defined. The only element I fount missing was the revision rounds. I think you should cover that aswell.

  24. Posted February 15, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    You are right Alicia, I should have included that. in this case the Client/Charity hardly changed anything – but of course that’s not always the case :)