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Tennessee pays 46k for new State Logo

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I think we an all agree that the State of Tennessee has a bad taste in logos.

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Again, I don't see what was so difficult about the 3 Stars in a Circle - pretty sure everyone and their Grandma from Germany knows what that logo means.

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$46,000 is pretty cheap, I think. I don't do graphics design, but I do communications work. Depending on the size of the team, $46,000 for an iterative branding process (especially if it takes multiple months) seems like a pretty good value.

It may be, actually. Some top artists, like Paul Rand, used to charge $100,000 per logo. If this was a long, drawn-out process, that $46k may not have been as expensive as it seems. Although certainly the final result doesn't seem to be anything to write home about.

And that's the thing....

Is this half as good as anything Paul Rand, Glaser, Haviv, Scher, etc etc would create?

Not even a fraction as good- yet the cost is around half.

They were robbed. Plain and simple. I don't care if you take 7 years to build a Ford Focus... you can't charge the price of a Aston Martin. Doesn't work that way.

If you are thinking about a career in design, you should seriously switch gears now. You don't get it. each post you make devalues the stance you're trying for some reason to take

$46,000 is pretty cheap, I think. I don't do graphics design, but I do communications work. Depending on the size of the team, $46,000 for an iterative branding process (especially if it takes multiple months) seems like a pretty good value.

It may be, actually. Some top artists, like Paul Rand, used to charge $100,000 per logo. If this was a long, drawn-out process, that $46k may not have been as expensive as it seems. Although certainly the final result doesn't seem to be anything to write home about.

And that's the thing....

Is this half as good as anything Paul Rand, Glaser, Haviv, Scher, etc etc would create?

Not even a fraction as good- yet the cost is around half.

They were robbed. Plain and simple. I don't care if you take 7 years to build a Ford Focus... you can't charge the price of a Aston Martin. Doesn't work that way.

If you are thinking about a career in design, you should seriously switch gears now. You don't get it. each post you make devalues the stance you're trying for some reason to take

If I'm THINKING about one?

haha That's the thing. I'm pretty sure I'm on here having this conversation with aspiring designers and students while I'm an art director. That's my job.

And if this doesn't make you all feel guilty, good luck getting hired. Your eye for solid work is lacking and your acceptance for mediocrity is prime.

Neither make for good designers.

I understand clients not liking your best work. That's the norm. I can give back 10 designs and they'll pick the worst one every time. However- my worst wouldn't be half as bad as this. I wouldn't allow them to choose this poorly.

But.. this is the difference between those that do what they're told and those that actually have a voice in collaboration.

46k for a -$50 uninspired logo. This was mailed in. Sat on.

Is what it is, gents.

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The marketing and design agency that created the logo, GS&F, responded to the criticism on its Facebook page:

"We explored hundreds of directions and ultimately created a strong and simplified brand identity system for the state government of Tennessee. We stand by our work."

The controversy has prompted other agencies, including Titan Web Marketing Solutions, to weigh in.

"We feel for both sides," said Anne Mercer, with Titan Web Marketing Solutions. "The taxpayers, they saw the $46,000 price tag and went, oh my gosh. This is such a lot of money for what seems to be such a simplistic logo. On the other side of it, we feel for GS&F, who probably spent hours upon hours developing tons of concepts, tons of brand identities for the state. And then the state chose this one, or whomever chose this one."

Read more: http://www.wsmv.com/story/29138623/firm-behind-new-state-logo-stands-by-design#ixzz3b4R2RCu8

Shocker. The "branding" (pains me to use that word here) company that stole $46,000 is sticking by their work?

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All we've seen is the logo itself. Is there a more comprehensive branding and identity package of which this logo is a part?

People can complain that this is logo is not worth the $46K. Any they may be right.

But if this logo is part of a bigger package, maybe we would all be able to see how this fits into the scheme of things.

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Again, I don't see what was so difficult about the 3 Stars in a Circle - pretty sure everyone and their Grandma from Germany knows what that logo means.

I think the three stars in a circle is cool - but I seriously doubt that "everyone" knows what that logo means. I'd wager that relatively few people outside of TN know what it mean, and maybe that was the problem. I only knew what it meant because the Titans use it in their branding and somewhere along the way I read an explanation of it. Obviously it's also on the flag, but average Joe might not study state flags very much.

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Here is my concept... since I live in TN

Screen_Shot_2015_05_24_at_9_57_31_PM.png

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Simple, yes. But if you're from another state and not familiar with the 3-Stars symbol, you need the extra text.

If you don't know the 3-Stars icon is from the Tennessee flag, you have to have include "State of Tennessee" for context.

The new TN logo can exist on its own, because it includes the name (or postal abbreviation) with its own shape.

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I understand clients not liking your best work. That's the norm. I can give back 10 designs and they'll pick the worst one every time. However- my worst wouldn't be half as bad as this. I wouldn't allow them to choose this poorly.

If the client is footing the bill, wouldn't it be their choice regardless of how simple and uninspiring it is? One thing I have always known about graphic design, you have to check your ego at the door.

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As someone who designs for a city, let me explain how something like this happens. #1 The price tag is set. #2 The designer(s) design the best they can. #3 You have people making decisions on the government sidewho shouldn't make decisions on design. This is what the client wanted and thought looks the best, even though they are 100% wrong. You can fight all you want for what is going to make them look the best, and they will never listen. They are all about pretty colors and that's how they make their choices. I guarentee you this decision as far as design was made because there's a lot of red in the logo which grabbed their attention.

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I understand clients not liking your best work. That's the norm. I can give back 10 designs and they'll pick the worst one every time. However- my worst wouldn't be half as bad as this. I wouldn't allow them to choose this poorly.

If the client is footing the bill, wouldn't it be their choice regardless of how simple and uninspiring it is? One thing I have always known about graphic design, you have to check your ego at the door.

I understand clients not liking your best work. That's the norm. I can give back 10 designs and they'll pick the worst one every time. However- my worst wouldn't be half as bad as this. I wouldn't allow them to choose this poorly.

If the client is footing the bill, wouldn't it be their choice regardless of how simple and uninspiring it is? One thing I have always known about graphic design, you have to check your ego at the door.

Of course. Well, to an extent.

When it comes down to it- you have to make sure your client knows who they hired and why they hired you- instead of doing it themselves.

And yeah, sometimes that process is almost impossible- but again- you give the client the choices.

If you end up in a corner like this- it's up to you to make it work. They didn't.

So... now they have this logo tied to their name. A logo that is unanimously hated.

Where were you guys with all these excuses for the design team when Gap changed their logo?...

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As someone who designs for a city, let me explain how something like this happens. #1 The price tag is set. #2 The designer(s) design the best they can. #3 You have people making decisions on the government sidewho shouldn't make decisions on design. This is what the client wanted and thought looks the best, even though they are 100% wrong. You can fight all you want for what is going to make them look the best, and they will never listen. They are all about pretty colors and that's how they make their choices. I guarentee you this decision as far as design was made because there's a lot of red in the logo which grabbed their attention.

Right. Which is when you realize your job as a designer is a bit more than just that.

I've got a client that's killing us right now because she has no idea what she's doing- but wants to make all decisions. I'll give her middle-ground, but I'm not allowing her to design the project. I'm not attaching my company's name to bad work. She's slowly starting to realize that she's not the designer. Her ideas are important, and her vision is as well- but she's not the designer. She hired designers for that reason.

And it takes a ton of tact to be able to trick them into thinking it's their ideas- but it's the game you have to play. Or.... you put out a logo that makes everyone scratch their head.

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Simple, yes. But if you're from another state and not familiar with the 3-Stars symbol, you need the extra text.

If you don't know the 3-Stars icon is from the Tennessee flag, you have to have include "State of Tennessee" for context.

The new TN logo can exist on its own, because it includes the name (or postal abbreviation) with its own shape.

It seems that it would be quite rare that a state logo would be used out of state, except in between governments.

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Simple, yes. But if you're from another state and not familiar with the 3-Stars symbol, you need the extra text.

If you don't know the 3-Stars icon is from the Tennessee flag, you have to have include "State of Tennessee" for context.

The new TN logo can exist on its own, because it includes the name (or postal abbreviation) with its own shape.

It seems that it would be quite rare that a state logo would be used out of state, except in between governments.

Tourism ads? It's possible that this logo was strictly designed to only be used in-state, but it'd make more sense (to me) to have one that could be used consistently in and out of state. I don't know how many states have official logos, but just browsing PA's tourism site visitpa.com and they use the keystone with PA monogram all over it. If you go to state.pa.us (the official state website), you'll see it there too. Looks like they have different colors for different uses, but the logo is simple, effective, and looks fine in color, b&w, large / small scale, etc.

PA can do this because the keystone lends itself organically to being a logo, and there's enough space for a PA, even though the keystone could probably stand on its own. TN doesn't have that benefit, so while they could definitely have tried harder to find some kind of iconic imagery to base the logo around, a big "TN" was probably nearly mandatory for a project like this.

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Don't think they're going to be able to use this one in state without someone defecating on it every time.

It's unanimously hated, and rightfully so.

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Simple, yes. But if you're from another state and not familiar with the 3-Stars symbol, you need the extra text.

If you don't know the 3-Stars icon is from the Tennessee flag, you have to have include "State of Tennessee" for context.

The new TN logo can exist on its own, because it includes the name (or postal abbreviation) with its own shape.

It seems that it would be quite rare that a state logo would be used out of state, except in between governments.

Tourism ads? It's possible that this logo was strictly designed to only be used in-state, but it'd make more sense (to me) to have one that could be used consistently in and out of state. I don't know how many states have official logos, but just browsing PA's tourism site visitpa.com and they use the keystone with PA monogram all over it. If you go to state.pa.us (the official state website), you'll see it there too. Looks like they have different colors for different uses, but the logo is simple, effective, and looks fine in color, b&w, large / small scale, etc.

PA can do this because the keystone lends itself organically to being a logo, and there's enough space for a PA, even though the keystone could probably stand on its own. TN doesn't have that benefit, so while they could definitely have tried harder to find some kind of iconic imagery to base the logo around, a big "TN" was probably nearly mandatory for a project like this.

They tend to use different branding for tourism. More like what is seen on a license plate.

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10moah0.jpg

This with Tennessee underneath would fit so much better and clearly state what the logo is there for. Though I would strip this down to only the three stars rather than a whole constellation.

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Please press "option" while creating stars...

Everyone start doing this.

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