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Get the real world small business design tips, techniques, and ideas on using your favorite editor to quickly get the job done.
Logos are essential to any business; they are on blog and website headers, business cards, social media profiles and printed media. Without a logo, it’s kind of like no store front sign on a physical store. How would customers know that they’re at the right place? You can hire someone to create an attractive logo, but it’ll cost you. You need a logo, a cool one. Plus it would be nice if it was an affordable logo. Why not make a 5 minute logo using GIMP?
GIMP- Logo Creator
If you’re not familiar with GIMP it stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program and it runs on Windows, Mac and Linux. An open source free editor that graphic designers use for image editing, photo editing, vector graphic creation to name a few cool things individuals use it for. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. GIMP is the planet’s best alternative to the more pricey subscription software options, think Adobe and CorelDraw.
Graphics For The Non-Designer Too
GIMP isn’t just for professional artists, it has a lot of non-designers and DIY’ers using it for all kinds of less complicated graphic design projects. In particular, an affordable logo design with GIMP is possible; it has some nice features and pre-written scripts can make your logo free while looking like you spent a fortune. In fact, the only pre-work you would need to do is decide the color scheme and possibly upload the color background you want to use if you don’t use the defaults.
Pretty slick. So let’s take a look at making 5 minute logos with GIMP.
Free Editor For Any Operating System
If you don’t have GIMP just go to GIMP‘s website, download and run the installer for your operating system of preference. Then start up GIMP and give it a minute to load; the first time might be slow as it registers and loads the GIMP support libraries.
How Does GIMP Make Your Logo Easy To Create
The trick is using logo scripts that come with the 2.8 version of GIMP; I’ve seen them missing in the pre-compiled versions of 2.10. However I’ve found that if you load the 2.8 the scripts you can simply search for the scripts in the 2.8 script folder and copy the files over to the 2.10 script folder. The other option is to compile GIMP from source code and at least on my mac they were included in the 2.10 version.
As I mentioned, I use a Mac and the screenshots are from that but within GIMP it pretty much looks similar no matter the OS.
So before I get started, I could make a couple of backgrounds or pattern in colors I want to use to make my logo and then make those available in GIMP but I’m going to keep this easy and just use what I have. ( I’ll post in another article how to do that.)
How To Build Your Logo With GIMP
Fire up GIMP; when you start it looks a bit blank so you need to create a new file. I’m just going to use the default size although I’d recommend at least 1024 pixels. You can always easily downsize the resulting png or jpg as needed.
Next set the default text font and color to use.
Now in the white workspace, type in the logo name.
You can modify the text font, text size and text color simply by going to each box and making the appropriate changes. You can also “change kerning of selected text” or the spacing in between the letters to widen; the other option is “change baseline of selected text” which increase the spacing below the letters. Both of these help make the text more readable especially since I’m about to add some special effects to make the logo look awesome.
Now, go to the Filter menu at the top, select “Alpha to Logo”, than “Glossy”.
You can play with these options changing colors, gradients or a combination. For this example I’ll use a nice blue-green gradient on the text with a very dark blue pattern outline. Clicking on ok runs the script and adds the special effects.
And I’m done.
If I want the logo with a transparent background instead of white, I just go to the layers button, delete the white backgrounds before I click on File, Export and save to a .png filename.
It’s That Quick
This is the end result. I’ve saved it to .png format to retain the transparent background; it can be placed on any white or colored background and look very professional. Although I’ve shrunk it here to fit the page, in reality it is large, over 1024 pixels wide so I can resize appropriately for both web and printed needs.
If I wanted to spend more than 5 minutes I could add a little water drop icon in the same color.
If this helps you consider sharing it. Thanks!
Make a cool logo in less than 5 minutes with Inkscape. Here's 24 ways to do it. >>> 24 Inkscape Filter Effects With Text