What Is The Future For Logo Designers: Adapting To AI Technologies
Artificial intelligence is everywhere. Despite the fact that it has been around to some extent for decades, it still has a strange stigma attached to it. As it infiltrates arena after arena, gradually streamlining processes and eliminating jobs, the one area that we’ve felt comfortable declaring it will never reach is that of the creative. And that includes graphic design of all stripes, such as specialists in logo design.
But if you thought it would never come to a point where AI technology was an everyday part of design, then it’s time to think again. This project for Nutella used AI technology to create variations for the packaging design.
The good news is, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. AI is a tool, and is designed to be used to make our jobs easier. Whether we’re professional designers working with a firm, or freelancers going from client to client, AI provides a lot of benefits.
The real question is, are you ready to use it?
Designers Vs. AI
Artificial intelligence gets something of a bad rap. Maybe it’s from our obsessive consumption of science fiction, in which AI is almost always a detriment to humanity — if not a straight-up villain. So it may seem, at first, that it’s designers against AI tech.
Who will win?
The truth is, AI technology was created to benefit us, not to crowd us out of our jobs. When used in the way it was designed, such tech can help us to streamline the design process, cut down on expenses, provide a better customer experience to our clients, and ensure followthrough — and that none of our potential clients falls through the cracks.
Pros And Cons Of AI Tech
That being said, there are still some who style themselves as holdouts against AI — and there’s a reason behind it. It isn’t simply that they’re old-fashioned and refuse to adapt to changes; most logo designers wouldn’t survive long if that was their attitude about everything.
After all, the marketplace of logo design, and graphic design in general, seems to be changing constantly. Trends come and go, companies need branding and rebranding, and it’s the everpresent dream to create logos that grow with the brand, meeting each need as it comes. But graphic design, like most creative endeavors, isn’t static; it needs to breathe.
The most common complaint about AI in terms of creative businesses like graphic design is that using AI tech removes the heart and soul of the creative business. Turning to purely computer-generated design does certainly eliminate a certain human quality. Even when a designer inputs the parameters, there’s still often an element of spontaneity and understanding that is lacking. So it’s perfectly comprehensible that logo designers might say, “Wait a minute, back up. Artificial intelligence in my graphic design? I don’t think so.”
If you’re one of those, don’t be so quick to make a decision. There’s more at stake here than you know.
AI isn’t all about the cons, after all. Nor is it all about undermining the creative aspect of logo design.
Turning AI Into A Positive
The fact is, while you can use AI tech to craft graphics and inform your decisions, there are far more plus sides to utilizing AI within your logo design business — even without letting it touch the actual graphic design process.
Here are a few of the big benefits to incorporating AI tech within your overall work process.
- Target your audience more successfully
- Process branding analysis
- Keep on track of trends
- Organize your work
- Improve overall efficiency
- Cut down on expenses
- Stay in touch with your clients
- Advertise to new potential clients
Many of these are directly related to the business side of things, rather than the creativity aspect. For example Microsoft AI tech tools provide dynamic personalization, tailored to the individual, to help them find what they need and establish a connection between designer and client. Similarly, most helpdesk ticketing systems use AI to allow users to customize their stores based on user behavior. That means, if you’re absolutely against using any AI tech tools in your hand-drawn logo design, you can avoid it. But AI will still help you to be a better businessperson.
AI Tech: Making A Difference For Designers Every Day
With that list of potential pros in mind, let’s take a look at some specific tools and what a logo designer can use them for.
Within the creative realm, AI-based sites Logo Design and similar allow users to guide the AI tech with specifics, like the company name, type of company, services offered, type of logo, and so on. The results are collected and compiled into a series of logo design suggestions. While this is probably exactly the sort of thing that designers are worried about with AI design tech, it can still be useful for a designer, in terms of logo design inspiration.
Source: Logo Design
And while sites like this will be appealing to some clients, it’s probable that they will be smaller businesses who aren’t as likely to hire a graphic designer to begin with. So AI tech, in this case, isn’t going to make huge inroads on a designer’s potential client base.
AI design tools are also helpful for brainstorming a variety of design variations that can be presented to a client or tested out before a final decision is made. Ordinarily, a designer will have to go through and produce each variation or iteration separately, which can amount to a huge investment of time and effort. But with smart design tools, designers can create variations in sizing, spacing, coloring, and style as they go, cutting down on the time the designer requires to complete the project.
An easy way to look at is to think about the filters in Photoshop, Instagram, or almost any other photo editing software. Each filter produces a variety of changes to the design, based on presets. Using AI tech to run off these preset changes gives you a range of potential designs to present to the client. And it may help you to think of variations that otherwise wouldn’t have occurred to you!
“That sounds great,” you say, “but I’m still on the fence. With all these great AI software possibilities, how do we know that AI won’t take over my job as a designer after all?”
Why AI Won’t Replace Designers
Simply put, there are at least three basic reasons why AI and human designers work together, not against each other.
The first one is simply the human element. Humans have a depth of understanding and emotion that AI simply can’t replicate. Even when AI tech tools are trained to mimic emotion to a certain extent, there’s no way to completely imitate how a human would look at things. And that extends beyond the design itself — often, a business owner or entrepreneur simply wants to be able to speak with a human designer who can grasp what they’re all about, communicate effectively, and make a personal guarantee that they can provide what is needed.
Secondly is the need of the client. It’s only very recently that AI has been able to begin to distinguish the type and style of logo that a client requests, and thus far, the best AI can do is provide a range of options in the hope that one of them will be close enough to what is wanted. That’s another reason why AI tools are excellent starting points for logo design inspiration, rather than excellent final drafts.
The third basic reason is the point of originality. AI tech is artificial — it was created by someone who programmed it to behave in a certain way. Human designers are informed by their experiences and personalities, but they aren’t programmed, and that’s where originality comes in. For some clients, that originality is the most important aspect. No entrepreneur wants to blend into the crowd.
Along with these three basic reasons are dozens of other, smaller reasons — if not more! Ultimately, artificial intelligence tools are coworkers for human logo designers, rather than replacements.
Choose Your Tools
The end point here is that AI is already clearly existent in the design world. Fighting against it will result in a slowdown of your process, especially when compared to others who are staying on top of the cutting edge, tech-wise. That will cut down on your clientele, and you’ll likely lose at least some of them to designers who can provide the work more quickly, with a more accurate and better-designed overall final product.
That leaves designers with the choice, not necessarily of whether to use AI at all, but of which tools to incorporate into their design process. This is really a personal decision, as the choice boils down to specifics. What type of logos you design, how big your business is, any specialties you may have — all of these will play into which AI tools you choose to use.
The important thing is to keep an eye on how they will influence your productivity, streamline your design process, and enhance your communication with your client.
The Big Plus: Benefits Of AI Technology for Logo Designers
We mentioned some benefits already, but let’s highlight how some of these specifically cater to professional logo designers.
Setting aside the use of AI in actually designing logos, AI is more commonly used for larger design firms to start a relationship with a new client, get information on what they’re looking for, and lay the groundwork for the eventual delivery of the final product.
Source: Science Soft
AI works for design firms in a number of ways, most notably including:
- Personalization. As your potential client begins to work with you, AI tech can tailor your portfolio, marketing, and other aspects of your site to fit what the client is looking for.
- Communication. More and more sites are turning to AI chatbots to open the lines of communication with site visitors. These can be used to get the basics of what your customer is interested in before the designer actually gets involved in the conversation.
- Lead generation. Chatbots and other AI features can also get relevant information from potential clients, allowing a designer to follow up and establish with them.
What about for individual designers or freelancers?
The Future Of Freelance Design
If you work on your own as a designer, or with one or two other employees, AI tech can be a huge boost to your productivity and even to the services that you’re able to offer.
The purpose is to streamline, and if you’re a freelancer working on your own, there’s nothing better than an AI partner who is designed to cut down on your tech work so you can focus on your creativity. That’s what you want to provide to your clients, after all.
Use AI tech tools to:
- Keep on top of logo design trends within individual markets. Computers can get through far, far more information than a human can, so let your tools handle the analysis of what’s popular in logo design this year.
- Sort your elements according to relevance.
- Explore new fonts based on the project you’re working on.
- Suggest color schemes, as through sites like Cooler.com.
- Improve organization and efficiency.
- Analyze the target audience for each individual project and choose elements that are targeted for that audience.
- Find new opportunities to seek out clients.
Creating With AI
Regardless of how you feel about it personally, the fact is that artificial intelligence is steadily being incorporated into every market and aspect of our lives — including design.
But that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
Using AI tech can boost your business as a designer by enabling you to provide better products, communicate more effectively, and even grow your client base. It can furnish you with trend analysis, market and data analysis, and any other kind of analysis that you know you need but haven’t had the time to sort out for yourself. And even artificially designed logos have their place for smaller businesses or as inspiration to logo designers.
Again, the question arises. Not, “Will AI tech be a part of graphic design?” but, “Are you ready to make use of it?”
t’s already here. It’s time to face the future!
Author Zaheer Dodhia