Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Logo Design: Swig

I recently made a logo for Swig, a new bar/restaurant from Stella's Restaurant in Ohio. Demographically, Swig is looking for the 25-50 year old. Swig can be described as an inexpensive, fun and intimate neighborhood joint. It will feature 19 draft beers, comfort foods primarily focused on sausage sandwiches, etc. and will be able to seat about 60 people inside, another 75 on outside patio during warm weather (with stainless steel tables and bar with black walnut trim). They're looking for a logo that "puts a smile on people's faces" and makes them curious enough to come in. Swig will be a casual place, where people can feel comfortable "come as they are," but it will be well-kept and have a bit of hipness, too. The logo should include the name of the bar and their tagline ("Charcuterie and Suds for the Curious"). The logo will be used for front facade of building, as well as promotional materials and other purposes.

I worked on developing a text-based logo, using friendly legible script fonts. Of course, using text as a logo is very boring so I aimed for subtle modifications to incorporate specific requests of the client. Emphasizing on the need for a logo that "puts a smile," I searched for a way to integrate this on the basic text… and voila… what if I reshaped the tail loop of the "g" into a subtle "smile"? I edited the dot of the "i" into a spiral to evoke the "suds" nature of the bar/restaurant. I avoided using any direct visual references (such as using graphics of beer or mugs) because the name of the bar/restaurant already refers to the act of drinking beer. How the text is displayed will be important to show subtly the "hipness" but at the same time "classiness" of the bar/restaurant. Here's the basic logo in black and white:

I provided some color versions, and I thought of framing it into this:

At first this didn't appeal to them, as one person in their group suggested that it looked like the logo for instant potatoes or Duncan Hines (bake products). A friend of mine I showed this to commented it looked like a chocolate factory's logo. I thought, "This is good!" It meant that the logo seemed to evoke taste… which is very important for a restaurant logo. I framed it actually to make it look like an old beer label, and I was glad other people who saw this version thought so. But I provided them with another version without the framing and the red band:

It took a while before they grew into the logo, after having other competing proposals. But finally, they liked it a lot, thinking its versatility to be used for signage, menus and letterhead. They would be using all iterations of the logo. I provided them with the horizontal treatments of the logo, and here are the final horizontal versions:

Now, I've wanted to have a swig of cold beer after this project. Come to think of it, I've never been drunk before and I've always wondered how I'd be overpowered by alcohol. Would I turn into a laughing clown or a violent brute, a sleepy slob or a raging sex maniac? I have this fear of losing control of myself, but there's also this curiosity that has to be quelled. If only it would be that easy to get drunk.