As a creative graphic designer I work with a broad spectrum of businesses a variety of market sectors to enhance the image that they promote to their clients in an imaginative and bespoke way.

I offer a one stop service from design to print for single projects or ongoing design work developing a corporate image on a variety of commissions over a period of time.

When small businesses are developing a marketing plan, they need to lay a strong foundation with a corporate identity that defines their company and can be developed organically, along with their growing business. One of the first requirements is a logo or typestyle which defines the business, with a strap line to help define the market place. These can be used for print or online marketing.

Business cards are vital for networking and as a first introduction to potential clients and act as a mini brochure. They should be memorable and carry an easy means of getting in touch. A ‘letter heading’ which can be used for online communications comes next, followed by an informative leaflet or brochure which can be printed or used online, the content and style are very much driven by the type of company and it’s market place.

I offer a very personalised and friendly service to people requiring a brand image of which the logo or typestyle plays a key part. I like to have an initial informal meeting over coffee in which we chat and find out a bit about each other. This is very much exploratory and is a chance for us to find out if we can work happily together. Before I start designing, I like to know about potential clients and their businesses, what are their products, how they see the future, how they want to evolve and what sort of input they would like from me. If we like each other and feel that we can work together, then we have built a trust that will move to the next phase.

The creation of a product brand and logo comes initially from our conversations. I find out what they like and what they don’t like. I tune into their personalities and the type of people they want to work with and sell to.

It differs from client to client and their needs. Eventually I build up a picture of their vision from which I will interpret a visual design with a colour palette, suite of fonts, an initial page of concepts from which we will develop the final branding. At every stage the client has input as my belief is if they love their design, they will use it to the full and together we will develop their brand. I add to the mix, my years of experience and knowledge and creativity to give them an mage that they can with confidence, sell themselves.

Some clients have already been trading with an identity, but feel that they have outgrown it, want to move on or have something newer and fresher. With them, we examine the existing branding and the areas that work and the parts that don’t. It might be due to a change of direction or expansion or a need for radical change. Once the reason is established, I can guide the client towards the solution, which could be a total rebrand, or a subtle reworking of what exists. Sometimes an image only needs updating or a font changing to bring it back to life or sometimes a total revisitation of image is needed. In either case, we go through the discussion process followed by concepts and work towards a final solution.

People sometimes ask how important a logo is to a business or whether the company name is enough. I have to say that it very much depends on the company, their product and their market place. Sometimes a company name just does not suit a logo and sometimes an unusual font or the construction of the name constitutes a logo. I tend very much in these cases to work in instinct!

I was recently asked what project had I worked on that they might recognise in the market place and after a little consideration my response was ‘…the facias of the condom machines in Spearmint Rhino’!

This truly was a challenging and exciting project…

If you would like to talk to me about your challenging and exciting projects contact me on diane@collingwood-design.co.uk

Blog written by Diane Butler – Collingwood Design