Writing For HOW: Writing and Designers

Writing for HOW article

Some designers seem to conveniently disappear when writing and copy are discussed, and I think this relates to our overall visual natures. Many designers think, relate, and communicate in images — it’s one of the skills that leads to great design and better designers. But while a picture is supposedly worth a thousand words, text isn’t going away anytime soon. So, it’s up to us, as designers, to wrangle the written word and to make the work we do even greater by engaging with the copy.

That’s a snippet from an article I wrote for HOW Magazine, about the fear that many designers and creative types have when it comes to writing. We find it’s a common issue among peers and others we rub elbows with, and I believe I’ve got some helpful thoughts to consider. Check it out and comment either here, or at HOW directly.


Writing For LogoNest 01

LogoNest book cover Hexanine

We’ve just received our copy of the brand-new inspiration book by LogoNest. The book was an outgrowth of the popular logo website, and we were asked to lend our voice to this first collected volume. Hexanine partner Tim contributed the case study/tutorial “Marrying Symbol And Metaphor.” It’s at home among other great writing by Steve Zelle (of Processed Identity), Leighton Hubbell, and a slew of other design authors.

Hexanine article for LogoNest 01

Below is an excerpt from “Marrying Symbol And Metaphor.” For the rest of the story and more great logo inspiration, you can purchase the limited-edition book at the LogoNest website.

Defining The Symbol
A symbol is roughly defined as an image, object or depiction that represents something else. Understanding the basics of symbology is at the core of what we do as designers. It’s crucial for identity designers to absorb the basic symbols of culture, whether they are derived by association, resemblance, or convention. Symbols are super-valuable, because they communicate a vast amount of information with simplified visual depictions. Think of a stop sign’s associations, or the cross that represents a broad array of religious thought. These symbols don’t tell a complete story, but they stand in for much more complex thoughts or concepts. So, the first step of crafting an excellent logo is to generate a library of relevant symbols.