What’s wrong with ready-made?

With the recent launch of Logoturn.com by respected designer Gregory Grigoriou, further controversy about the very nature of the ready-made logo design model continues. If you want to see how large the market has become simply search engine: ‘ready made logos.’ What I first noticed is that the general quality seems to be lacking and they mostly share a ‘clip arty’ type feel. This personally would put me off as a buyer no matter how reasonably priced a logo may be, as I would be looking for originality above all. On the other side of the coin these types of sites are obviously flourishing and are here to stay so must surely be embraced, right?… So, what’s wrong with ready-made?

This is a statement from Logoturn’s website:

Logoturn is your store for distinctive and original logo design and domain names. At Logoturn you can buy a logo and domain instantly, and even have us customize it for your specific needs. Logoturn stocks only the best logo design templates created by extremely talented and experienced logo designers. We know that the quality and character of your business brand is immediately conveyed through a well crafted logo design. At Logoturn you won’t find thousands of mediocre, uninspiring logo templates because we are committed to stocking only the best prefab logo designs.  We want you to know that our logos are only sold once, and once they are purchased they are never sold again. You are receiving a one-of-a-kind logo design when you buy a logo from the Logoturn marketplace.

A ready-made logo is kind of like reverse engineering. Normally a designer will start with a problem and systematically work through until it is solved. Ready-made circumvents that and solves a problem before it is even assigned. All I see are infinite possibilities and ways to look at any situation. Designers get inspiration from all areas of life. I have ideas that flash into my head constantly throughout the day. I would hate for a creative spark to go to waste just because it didn’t conform to standard design practice. So, I will create from scratch and maybe later sell it… the same as any artist. Of course it’s great to make a few extra bucks but honestly the satisfaction of seeing a quality result which hours before was just a mere thought-form is priceless. Another reason I like the idea of ready made is you can bring all your old unused concepts back to life. It’s great to bring old ideas back into the arena rather than watch them collect dust at the back of the hard drive!

From a personal perspective I don’t see any problem with selling my work in this type of setting. Some designers choose to enter contests, some work exclusively with clients in the traditional sense, and others sell their wares on sites like iStockphoto, Brandstack and now Logoturn. The world is changing fast. That’s why there are beautiful modern prefab houses now, paintings that you can buy from a gallery instead of commissioning them, clothing by top designers that are off the rack, and website templates like WordPress, Facebook and Twitter that are all really just different forms of prefab design. Whether you are a designer or buyer it’s all about freedom of choice… to participate and be involved or not. You quickly learn as a designer which is the best route to take and if there is market then ready-made is certainly a viable option.

In conclusion I think the only way forward is to focus on quality over quantity. Logoturn is surely a step in the right direction to convince the doubters that ready-made logos can be both professional and affordable.

Full disclosure: Rich Scott has been a contributing designer to Logoturn and Brandstack.