Frauke Meyer was the 1st place winner of Wave #2.
I wanted to snag her for an interview to get to know the creator behind the creations.
Tell me your story/background. What led you to become a designer?
I grew up in Germany and moved over to England roughly two years ago. Holding true to the German stereotype I’m also the most unspontaneous person you’ll ever meet and I always need to have a plan – especially for the future. And I don’t mean 5 year plan, I’m talking 15 – 20 year plan.
So when I got to the age of deciding what I wanted to earn my money with, I had loads things on my mind and plan A – Z lined up. I was going to be Frauke, the marine biologist. Frauke, the therapist. Frauke, the English teacher.
After doing research, failed tests and interviews in all of these interest fields it started to become clear that this decision really was a no-brainer and I wondered why I wasted time with other things. Not only was being creative what I’ve always been passionate about, it was also the only thing I was actually good at.
So here I am today: Frauke, the designer.
What do you like most about being in the creative field?
The diversity. No work day is like the other and I absolutely love it! Each project has its own character to it, its own problems to solve and its own strategy to do so. I also love the fact that usually the project looks nothing like I’ve imagined when I’ve started it. It’s proof of the potential of my ideas and my own personal growth with each project. I never stop learning and that what makes being a designer to much fun!
Please tell me about your logo design process.
A logo design starts way before the visual process. It all begins with research, making myself familiar with the background of the brand and really understanding what it’s all about – become an expert in the working field of the company.
Then I start to brainstorm. What story do I want the logo to tell? What feeling does it need to convey? I usually start a Pinterest board for each project and pin everything I see that I feel has even the slightest relevancy. This is especially helpful when I haven’t quite pin-pointed what directions you I want to go to.
Now, I’m probably the worst sketcher you can find, but I quickly learnt that it actually doesn’t matter. Just outlining my ideas will show me if something can work or not, because more often than not I find that the image in my head is pretty much not translatable. This enables me to weed out everything that’s no good before I waste time on digitalizing ideas.
The next stage is bringing the ideas to life on screen. The good thing is, thanks to my sketches most of the thinking work is already done. Now it’s down to pixel precision to bring the whole thing together.
After it’s send off to the client, all that’s left to do is tweaking the logo to the client’s liking until it’s ready to be released into the wild.
Do you ever have creative block? If yes, please explain how you counteract it.
Ah the notorious creative block. All of us get them and the hardest part for me is trying not to get so frustrated with myself, because I end up in this vicious circle that I can’t break out of. For me the best way to tackle them is step away from the project for a while and work on something else. I also like to look at other people’s work and get inspired by their use of colour, shapes and composition. Sometimes though you work on a tight schedule and you can’t afford doing that. In those cases I get my team together and get a different perspective on the designs I am doing and they will help me get on the right track again.
Who has had a positive impact on your career and why?
I have to be cheesy here and say that the team at the Hideout has had the biggest impact on me so far. When I graduated university I felt like it had taken every ounce of creativity from me and all my passion was gone – I wasn’t even sure if graphic design is what I wanted to do after all. The team has taught me that a challenging brief will only make you a better designer, that a creative block isn’t the end of the world and most importantly it reminded me why I wanted to do this in the first place.
Are there any design books and/or blogs you would like to share?
This is not strictly speaking a blog but there is something our team participate in every day called “OneMinuteBriefs”. Basically it’s the gym for creative minds. Every weekday a fictional brief goes up on their Twitter account (@OneMinuteBriefs). It can be anything from #peas to a real brief for Grant Thornton where you might even win some cash! The idea behind it is to come up with an ad concept within one minute, but if we’re honest it usually takes more than that! All you need to do then is tweet your idea and wait.
Winning or not, it’s a great way to work out your creative muscles. Athletes need to practice every day, why should it be any different for us designers?
Which avenues do you use to get an added boost of design inspiration?
As I mentioned before I use Pinterest for pretty all of my projects. It’s a simple way to organize my mind and decide what I visually expect from my work.
What do you like most about being part of the design team at The Hideout?
The amount of things I’ve learnt since I started working for the Hideout and still learn every day. As a small team we work hand in hand on projects and need to be able to do a project from start to finish. We need to be capable of taking over a project at any given stage, which gives me a broad skill set that is invaluable in the industry.
Also the people I work with are pretty awesome – just saying!
As an award-winning logo designer, tell us how you take a logo from good to great?
A logo doesn’t only need to look pretty, most importantly it needs to tell a story that’s understood in a split second. It needs to be taken out of context and still make perfect sense. I can’t tell you how many times I scrapped a really cool-looking logo because it just didn’t work within the bigger picture.
What attracted you to Logo Wave?
It was actually my Creative Director who entered my logo and after checking out the website I understood why. It’s an easy and affordable way to get your name out – especially for newer people in the industry who just want to see if they have what it takes to win an award.
What would you say to logo designers who are either on the fence, or don’t know a lot about Logo Wave?
Just give it a shot – you have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain.
If you could do design work for any company, who would it be and why?
I would love to work for WWF. I’ve supported them for years now and even adopted a panda from them. I fully stand behind what they do to save our planet and I would just be ecstatic to help make a difference in the world with my work.
How would you describe being a designer in 140 characters or less?
Apparently you’re not a real designer if you don’t drink coffee.
What are a couple pieces of advice you have for graphic designers?
- Remember you are a designer, not an artist. You are here to visually solve problems – if it’s aesthetically pleasing but doesn’t work, either make it work or chuck the idea out.
- Don’t take criticism personally. I find this quite hard because somehow there is a piece of me in every project I do, but in the end of the day it’s the client I’m representing with my designs, not me and my personal taste.