WHAT WE’RE CREATING:
Pam here with something you haven’t seen from me yet, a modern, professional themed tutorial! As this is my last tutorial with Design Cuts, it felt like a good time to mix it up and give you something fresh and new. For this week’s bundle I am going to walk you through the steps of creating a logo and expanding a brand across multiple items.
Let’s get started!
Follow along with this tutorial: Download the freebies
This week we have yet another incredible freebie pack of patterns and mock-up items from our amazing designers.
Remember, this freebie is just a tiny sample taken from the amazing collection: The Complete Professional Designer’s Toolkit at just $29 (an incredible 97% off). This extensive bundle has everything you need to take your design and business to the next level!
Before beginning design for a logo, I like to do a little research on what the brand stands for and who the audience is. Since we are creating a fictional brand our options are unlimited, so it is good to get an idea of where we are headed before beginning. I decided to create a clean and modern brand for a café that a hip crowd might hang out at. I chose the name “Wake Up Café,” which to me represents something bright and eye-catching.
With these ideas in mind, I knew I was going to be using san serif fonts to keep the brand looking clean, and bright sunrise colors to match the café name.
Now, our first step is going to be creating a logo. Open up a new document in Illustrator. I made my document a standard 11 x 8.5 landscape size.
I knew I wanted to create a lettermark for my logo using the W & C, so I used Stevie Sans Book in 100 pt. text to type “W” on my artboard. Keep in mind that when you are creating a vector logo in illustrator, the size you create your logo at will not make a difference because vector will scale up without pixilating. In this case, it will be easier to follow along with the tutorial if we are all using the same 100 pt. size.
With the same settings, type “C” in a separate text box. The easiest way to accomplish this is to hold down the “alt” key and drag over a copy of “W.” Then erase the “W” and type in “C.”
Hit “V” to move back to the selection tool (this next step cannot be completed if you are still using the type tool) and select both of the letters. Then navigate to Type > Create Outlines. Now our text will be editable as two separate vector objects.
To make my letters interact in a playful way, I moved my “C” to be positioned on the same horizontal line as my “W,” overlapping so that the line in the “W” creates an interesting geometric slash through the “C.” Here is a zoomed in example of my letter positioning:
Currently, the letters are creating a very flat shape. To make it appear as though the “W” is looping through the “C,” we are going to create spacing around the letters. First, select the “C” and duplicate it directly on top of itself. To do this, copy the C and then navigate to Edit > Paste in Place. Take the copied “C” and scale it up to 115% by navigating to Object > Transform > Scale.
Now, duplicate your “W” and paste it in place. We are going to be cutting into our “W” to create white space, but we will need access to the original unedited “W” in a few steps. To keep it out of our way, select the duplicated “W” and navigate to Object > Hide > Selection.
Open up your pathfinder window (Window > Pathfinder). Select the scaled up “C” and the visible “W,” then hit “minus the front.” The result will cut the “W” where the large “C” overlapped.
Select the “W” and navigate to Object > Ungroup so that each piece is now separated. Then, delete the hidden piece remaining inside the “C,” and the small triangle to the bottom left of the “C” (highlighted in red below).
Duplicate the “C” again, this time scaling down 85%.
Repeat the same process as before, selecting the separated line of the “W” that cuts through the “C” and the smaller duplicated “C.” Use pathfinder to minus the front.
Ungroup the line pieces and delete the two that are hidden within the “C.”
Currently our “W” looks like it is sitting behind the “C”. To make it interlock, we are going to bring back the “W” that we hid earlier. Navigate to Object > Show All. The complete “W” will appear on top of our sectioned one. Now using the scissors tool (C) click on the following locations of the complete “W” to cut them:
With the “W” we just cut selected, hit “ungroup” and then navigate to Object > Compound Path > Release. Now you can select the left portion of the “W” and delete it, so that only the small portion we cut on the right remains.
Duplicate the small line we have left and paste it in place. Then, scale it up by 220%.
Select the scaled up line and the “C.” Now, using pathfinder, hit minus the front.
Select the two pieces of the “W” remaining inside the “C.” This time we are going to use “unite” in the pathfinder window to combine the two pieces.
For the final part of the text in our lettermark, use the direct selection tool (A) to select the upper points in the “W” (highlighted in red below) and use the up arrow key to move them up one point so the “W” is more even with the height of the “C.”
Now that we have the text part of our lettermark, we are going to imitate the shape of the sun using a circular geometric design to contain our letters. First, using the Ellipse tool (L) click anywhere on the artboard to prompt a pop-up for width and height and input 3 x 3 inches. Make sure your circle is filled without a stroke.
Using the rectangle tool (M) create a square that is 2.1 x 2.1 inches. Change the square to have no fill, with a white stroke of 5 pt. and center it in the circle.
Duplicate the square we just created, paste in place and rotate it 45 degrees by navigating to Object > Transform > Rotate.
Select both of the white stroke squares and navigate to Object > Path > Outline Stroke.
With both of the squares still selected, use pathfinder to unite the shapes.
Select our new shape and the circle. Then, use Pathfinder to minus the front. Using the direct selection tool (A) select the center octagon and delete it.
Now that we have our final shape, select your “WC” and move it into the center to complete our logo.
Now that we have our logo, it’s time to expand the brand across multiple applications. Depending on what your logo is for, the items you choose to mock-up will change. Since we are doing a café, I chose a bag for tea, a to-go coffee cup, a pin, a shopping bag, a coaster and a business card (with the addition of a plant to give the composition a little more life). Before we apply our branding, let’s place all of our mock-up items together in one file.
From the bundle, navigate to L Store’s folder and open up Scene_Creator.psd.
I turned on the visibility for “Background  as it was my favorite, but there are lots of cool backgrounds to choose from! Once you have chosen, I recommend deleting the others to reduce the file size (note: many of the backgrounds have locked layers that will need to be unlocked before they can be deleted). I also chose to turn on “Effect ” as I knew I would be creating a scene with lots of bright colors.
The Scene Creator file is quite large, and we won’t be needing all of the space for the few items we are branding. Navigate to Image > Canvas Size and change the size to 35 x 25 in.
Now, open up your freebie file L-store-mock-up-items.
This next method is how we will be copying over every item from our freebies. Instead of copying the group over as one merged layer, we want to make sure the entire group (smart objects included) get copied over into our file. To do this, right click on the group “Card [m]” and select “Duplicate Group.” Then in the following pop up, choose your mock-up file from the drop down menu as the Destination and click “okay” (your mock-up file will need to be open for this to work). Now return to your mock-up file and the group and card will have copied over like so:
I encourage you to play around with your layout, but if you would like to use the same placement as I did I will briefly walk you through where I placed my files. I moved my card to the following location:
Next I duplicated over the “Pocket [m]” group from the same freebie.
I wanted to make my pocket group a little larger, so I selected the group as a whole and navigated to “Edit > Transform > Scale” and put 130%. Then I placed the pocket like so:
The remaining mock-up items can be found in the freebie mockup-zone-mock-up-items.psd.
Using the same process, I duplicated over the items from mockup-zone-mock-up-items.psd into my mock-up file. Even easier than going one by one, you can highlight all of the item groups and duplicate them over at one time. Once they are copied over, arrange them as you like or use my layout, shown below.
With our mock-up items in place, we are going to go one by one and apply our branding. The easiest way to expand a brand is to break apart the logo in various ways, instead of simply placing the same logo on every item. To give you a good example, let’s start with the business card or “Small white rectangle” layer.
I wanted to create a business card with a bleed (meaning the design goes all the way to the edge) so in this case we will not be using the smart object or “Replace” layer provided. Instead, hide it so that the plus is no longer showing.
Return to your logo file in Illustrator. Now we are going to apply some color to our design. I decided to use bright orange toned colors to represent the sunrise. On the circular sun portion, apply the color R: 246, G: 141, B: 35. For the letters, change the color to R: 239, G: 84, B: 5.
Select just the circular sun portion of the logo and copy it. Then paste it into your PSD in the top portion of the “small white rectangle” group. Position it so that a portion of it bleeds on to the upper left corner.
Now, clip the object to the rectangle and set the blending mode to multiply.
Now copy over the “WC” and be sure to paste as a smart object so that you can scale up. Then scale the “WC” up by 130%. Place it in the lower right-hand corner.
Now we have used elements in our logo to tie in with our branding in an interesting way that will differ from the other applications. Let’s add the café name to the top of the business card. In Illustrator under your logo, type “wake up” in all lowercase Beauchef Bold 45 pt. black. Add “cafe” to the end, this time using Beauchef Medium Italic with the same specifications.
To add the apostrophe to “café,” navigate to Type > Glyphs. Highlight the “e” and double click on the option with the apostrophe in the glyphs panel to change it out.
Outline your text (Type > Create Outlines) and then copy it and paste it into your PSD in the “small white rectangle layer” as a smart object. Scale it down to 65% and place it above your “WC” on the business card.
Let’s do another quick and easy mock-up. In the “Badge front” layer group, turn off the “Replace” layer. From your Illustrator file, copy over the entire colored lettermark (geometric circle and type). Paste it as a smart object and scale it down to 70%. Then clip it to the badge with the blending mode set to multiply.
Now let’s do the coaster or “card” layer group. For this one, we will be using the smart object file provided by L Store. Double click on the “card” layer within the group to open up the smart object.
Change the blending mode of the “Texture” layer to soft light. Then, above the “Form edit” layer, place 87.jpg from your freebie folder and clip it to “Form edit.” Make sure to scale up so that it fills the entire space.
Hide the “Change_this” layer, as that smart object doesn’t fill enough of the space for us to place our logo there. Instead, return to your Illustrator logo file, change the lettermark to white and copy and paste it above the now hidden “Change_this” layer. Scale it up by 500%.
Before saving and exiting, let’s brighten up the coaster color to match better with the rest of our clean white branding. Above the bottom “Card” layer, create a Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer by clicking on the “create new fill or adjustment layer” button at the bottom of the layer panel (circled in red below). Change the brightness to 90%.
Save the coaster “Change_this.psb” file and return to your original mock-up file to see the final results.
Next we will apply branding to the “Pocket” layer group. Double click on the “Pocket” smart object.
Double click on the upper “Change_color” layer to open up a Hue/Saturation adjustment panel. Then, change the saturation to -100 and the lightness to +25. Now our bag is white to match the rest of our branding.
Next, double click on the “Change_this” layer.
Delete every layer except the three rectangle layers that create the border and the line at the bottom. Then, copy over your white lettermark from your illustrator file, scaling up to 200%. Place it at the top of the file.
Now from your freebie folder, place 80.jpg and move it on top of the logo. Then, create a clipping mask so that the geometric image we placed becomes the color of the logo.
Now, create a text box above the horizontal line and in 72 pt. black text, type “BLACK TEA” in Stevie Sans Regular. In the Character panel (Window > Character) change the tracking to 75 (highlighted below).
Finally, return to your Illustrator file and change the color of your “wake up café” text to R: 239, G: 84, B: 5. Copy and paste it underneath the horizontal line, scaling up 140%.
Save both of your smart object files to return to your original mock-up and see the results!
The last two mock-up items will be a bit more complicated. First we will work on the bag. Since our café name is “wake up”, I thought it would be fun to put a cheery greeting on the shopping bag. It is always good to mix up the way you present your brand so that your mock-up items don’t end up looking too similar to one another. To begin, turn off the “Replace” layer on the bag, as we will not be using it (this is another item where I decided to create a bleed and therefore could not use the smaller smart-object).
Next, create a large text box in the top of your “White paper bag” group and in 315 pt. Stevie Sans Book type the letter “G.” Place it in the upper left corner of the bag right against the edge.
With the same specifications, type the letter “D” and place it up against the far right side of the bag, leaving a large gap between the letters.
Now, return to your Illustrator logo file and copy over the geometric circular element around our “WC.” The color won’t matter because we will be clipping in color from an image. Paste it in your mock-up file so that it sits right up next to the “G,” substituting as an “O” in the word “GOOD.”
Duplicate the circle we pasted so that we can complete the word “GOOD.”
Now, in 190 pt. Stevie Sans Book type “MORNING.” In the Character panel, change the tracking to -75.
Now that we have our full greeting, select all of the text and vector layers that we just created for “GOOD MORNING” and merge them together using ctrl/cmd +E. Now, locate 80.jpg from Graphicon in your freebie pack and place it at the top of your “White paper bag” group.
Clip it to your newly merged “Good Morning” layer and move it until you get the color effect that you prefer.
Select your “GOOD MORNING” layer and the clipped image above it and merge the two together using ctrl/cmd + E. Now, clip the merged layers to the bag layer “_” so that the letters no longer bleed off of the side of the bag.
Return to your Illustrator logo file and copy over the “wake up café” text (making sure your text is in black before copying it). Paste it in your mock-up file in the same “White paper bag” group, scaling up 150%. Place it at the bottom right corner to complete the bag.
Our last item is the take-away cup for our café. Hide the “Replace” layer in the “Coffee take away cup” group.
Copy over the same “wake up café” text from your Illustrator file as we did a moment ago for the bag and scale it down to 90%. Place it near the top of your coffee cup, with the layer location directly above the hidden “Replace” layer. This object has some highlighting effects, so we want to make sure we place our new layers beneath it.
Now copy over just the “WC” from our lettermark in Illustrator. Scale it up 175% and place it under the “wake up café” text.
Next, locate 87.jpg in your freebie folder under Graphicon. Place it in your PSD and scale it up 175%. Make sure the layer is located directly under the “Replace” layer, on top of the “-“ layer. Then, clip it to the coffee cup or “-“ layer.
Now we need to remove the geometric design from the lid of the cup. To do this, we are going to mask it out. Change the opacity of your “87” layer to 50% so that you can see the cup behind it. Then, using the Polygonal Lasso Tool (under L) or any selection equivalent that you prefer, select the bottom portion of the cup.
Remember, only the selection line separating the lid from the rest of the cup needs to be neat. As you can see in my example below, the remaining part of the selection does not matter as long as the bottom part of the cup is included. This is because we have already created a clipping mask to the layer below it.
Once you have finalized your selection, make sure you have the “87” layer selected in the Layers panel and click the “Add layer mask” button at the bottom of the Layers panel (highlighted below). Turn your opacity back to 100% and your design will now adhere to the bottom portion of the cup only.
Now, set the blending mode for your “87” layer to multiply so that the shadow effect shows through.
Finally, we are going to cut out the letters from our “wake up café” and “WC” from the background. This works better than making the letters white because you will be able to see the shadow beneath. To do this, first merge the letters and logo into one layer. Then, ctrl/cmd click the layer image to select just the area of that layer (highlighted below), like so:
With the area of the logo selected, hide the logo layer and click on the mask we previously created for “87.”
Now, using the brush tool (B), fill in the selected area on the mask with black. This will mask out that area of “87.”
Deselect using ctrl/cmd + D. Now you have your final mock-up scene!
Now that we have some mocked-up items for our café, we are going to use one of the amazing sign mock-ups from Made By Vadim. In your freebie file, open up Signs_07.psd. Then delete the “Remove me!!” layer.
Before we add our signage, we want to brighten up the color of the sign to match our branding. To do this we are going to use the Polygonal Lasso Tool (under L) on the Background layer to cut out the gray square sign shape. Click in any of the corners and the tool will create a straight line to the next corner you click in. Your final selection should look like the following, requiring only 5 points:
Cut out the shape by pressing ctrl/cmd + X and paste it in place with ctrl/cmd + shift + v. Now we will have a separate layer for the gray sign.
Above our new sign layer, create a Brightness/ Contrast adjustment layer with the brightness at 45. Then clip it to the cut out sign layer.
Now, double click on the smart object under the Mock-Up group.
Hide the text layer and return to your Illustrator logo file. Copy over your white lettermark and scale it up 300%. Place it at the top of the file.
Now from your freebie folder place the Graphicon image 96.jpg. Scale it up to horizontally fit the page and clip it to the logo.
Back in Illustrator, change your “wake up café” text to black and copy and paste it underneath the logo in the PSB smart object. Scale it up 300%.
Save the PSB and return to your original sign PSD to view the finished outdoor sign for your café!
And we’re done!
Our finished pieces show a complete brand system of bright, clean design. Hopefully this tutorial inspires you to create a brand of your own and use this week’s amazing bundle to show it off!
Remember to share your designs on the Facebook page too, as we love being inspired by the way you make these tutorials your own.
Starting with the next bundle, Renee will be taking over with some exciting new tutorial ideas that I know you are going to love. Thank you all for your kind comments and for sharing your beautiful designs during my time here with Design Cuts. You are a truly talented group of people and I can’t wait to check back and see what you create next!
If you haven’t done so already, be sure to pick up your bundle for an incredible 97% off while you still can!