Tips for creating a logotype using two letters


This post is based on the skills and exercises I teach my beginner designer students during a project where we make logotypes using our initials. We use Adobe Illustrator to complete this project.

For visual research and inspiration, we first look at this round-up of Two Letter Logo Designs. Next, we talk about the techniques utilized in the designs. Then, we open Illustrator and attempt to recreate a few logos we just looked at. Our logotype copycat process is fairly simple. We use fonts that we turn into outlines to have shapes that we can manipulate with the Pathfinder Unite and Divide tools.

Watch the videos below to see the process.

Learn to combine letters to form a logotype/monogram/or two-letter logo design

Watch me recreate several two-letter logo designs.

After learning a few common logotype-creation techniques, students use their initials to create personalized logotypes. Finding typefaces with unique letterforms can be time-consuming but worth the effort.

If you have the letter J in your initials, you might be interested in using a font that includes a capital J with a single left bar.

How to add lines to your logotype between letters

How do I create a logotype with a white gap between letters?

There are many ways to do this, but one trick is to use a letter (turned into a shape by using Create Outlines with a fill) AND the same letter perfectly aligned on top of the filled letter with a stroke set to “Align Stroke to Outside” and then Object > Expand Appearance > Stroke + Fill. This will make the outline become a shape that can be used with the Pathfinder > Divide controls. Watch this video (also shown above) to see this method in action.

Turn letters and the outlines of letters into geometric shapes

How do I turn an outline in Illustrator into a shape?

Turn an outline into a shape using Object > Expand or Object > Expand Appearance. You will be given options to expand the Fill, the Stroke, or both the Fill and Stroke.

If you found this post interesting, you’ll probably enjoy our round-up of genericized brands, primarily due to digital-use needs. You might also be looking for tips on using the pen tool in Adobe Illustrator.

Plus, every logo winds up existing in a PowerPOint document. Make sure logos look crisp in PowerPoint with this tip!

Happy Designing!

About the author

Kelly Barkhurst

Designer to Fullstack is my place to geek out and share tech solutions from my day-to-day as a graphic designer, programmer, and business owner (portfolio). I also write on Arts and Bricks, a parenting blog and decal shop that embraces my family’s love of Art and LEGO bricks!

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