Together with a UX friend, I am completing creative exercises from David Sherwin’s Creative Workshop: 80 Challenges to Sharpen Your Design Skills.
#1: Hello, My Name Is
Spend ten minutes answering the following questions: “What are my three strengths as a designer? My weaknesses? What’s my favorite color? What designers do I love? What design work do I enjoy? What kind of work do I want to do in the future?” Then design a logo for yourself that is clearly informed by your off-the-cuff responses. (30 min)
Instead of spending 30 minutes straight on the task, my friend and I decided to work in three 10-minute chunks, sharing our thoughts and getting a mini-critique at the end of each session. I appreciated this format because it allowed me to gather my bearings, pick up some new ideas, and ever so slightly cheat on the time limit (just a little).
Some questions were easy to answer (favorite color? RED), while others were a bit harder. The elements that I identified to incorporate were:
- Cross-cultural, with some connection to Asia
- Business knowledge in addition to design
- Detail-oriented, organized, responsible
- Focus on experiences that are not necessarily digital or high-tech, but rather inclusive and high impact
- The color red
Needless to say, not all of the elements were actually represented. I started with trying to form my initials into another Chinese character besides the 我 of my existing logo (开, or “open”), then derailed with a couple of Venn Diagrams that incorporated little people. Eventually I stumbled across using the letters JXU, but the best concept of that set was pronounce by my friend as being “a little boobular.”
Towards the end of our last 10-minute session, I was still without a solid concept. But within the last two to three minutes, I sketched out a combination of JX and UX:
And what do you know, I kind of liked it.
It’s not perfect (I think the only element that it actually does incorporate from the set is the color red), but identity design is an evolving process. And I think it’s a good step in the right direction. Not bad for a 30(ish) minute exercise!