Monday, September 26, 2011

Logo work for Alectra

Cap trading with.... Logos?

So just before I announced that I was stepping away from trading caps, Alectra let me know that she was including me in her special 100th post on her blog.  Like I often do, I forgot about it. So when I made Alectra's cap as my 'last' cap, she was kind enough to remind me of her special post.

She was also kind enough to let me off the hook for making her a cap.  Now she knows that I'm not good at receiving gifts, and that I would have probably worried over making her a return cap anyway.  But as I said, she was kind... she instead asked if I could make her a logo.  The idea intrigued me, and let me 'pay her back' while not making her a cap.

Now I used to make logos for small businesses around town.   So I've got the process down pretty well in my head.  My first question to Alectra was whether she wanted a text based logo, or a graphic one.  She decided on a graphic style, and before I could ask, she gave me some direction.  She was thinking of an image in a circle, with some text around it.  She also wanted it to represent in some way her love of latex stockings.

I liked the idea, and it would work great on a flat background, but I was afraid that it might not look so good on an image.  So I looked for an image to start with.... to give me some inspiration.

The first image I found that got me thinking was this:

I really liked that it showed off the model's legs and heels, but nothing else.  My only issue is that I was thinking of a more 'drawn' look.  I played a round a bit but didn't get what I was thinking of:  The closest I got was applying a 'Sumi-e' brush stroke filter in Photoshop, and making it black and white:

It was close to what I wanted.. but the fact that it was stockings was kind of obliterated.  So I went looking again, but this time at line art (god I love Google Images).  I found this little gem:

I was really surprised to find something so close to what I was already working with.  Now I needed text.  Alectra had given me text as a place holder to work with.  Looking at this image,my first thought was to have the text running along her leg... so I tried that.  I simply used the Path tool in Photoshop and drew points where all the curves would be.  Then using the Convert Point Tool, I made them into nice flowing curves.  Once I had the curves set, I just used the Type tool, placing it on the line and typed it out:

I liked the feel of the text following the line of her leg, but the tight curve of her knee didn't work for me.  It really didn't matter what font I used, it would be so tight that it would mess up.

I figured I could use the other side, but the problem I though was that there was no 'outline' on her thigh.  As I thought about having the text just follow the stocking it hit me... the text would make the imaginary line.  I just needed to make a curve that fit!  So I followed the same thing I did earlier, and made a curvy path for the text to flow over.  Once I had the text in place, it was obvious it would work on this side.  To show Alectra, I decided to show it both as 'Black on White' and 'White on Black' to show that it could work in different places on a cap:

I also wanted to show what the image would look like in a cap, so I 'borrowed' a couple of Alectra's caps, deleted her text based logo, and through this one in:

Alectra liked the way it was going.  But she brought up a couple issues.  She was concerned that the logo was vertical, instead of horizontal.  She was concerned with the text.  And she was concerned that it didn't look like latex stockings... instead it looked like hosiery.  We decided that Alectra's Playground would be a better text ( seemed to be to long).

I decided that this image would also look good horizontal just by rotating it 90 degrees.  And to get it more 'latex' like, I colored in the 'empty' spaces on the hose:

She was happier with this style.  But she had two issues... first she wasn't to happy with the 'butt' hanging out there without the rest of the body.  And she also voiced a concern I had... that the stockings would look better with some 'highlights' like the heels had.

And this is where I come up against a wall.  I'm pretty good at manipulating images.  But I'm not that good at drawing.  I could picture exactly what Alectra was after... and you can see it in this random image I just found:

But I can't add that to an image, especially one that started out as hand drawn.  I gave it a few halfhearted attempts, but it wasn't anywhere near 'good'.  I decided that I would try manipulating the original file.  I figured that the reason it looked like hosiery was the line in the back.  So I just went in and deleted that:

And then I made a version without the butt:

In this last example, I did it with the 'latex highlghts' and without, to shower her both looks.

And this is where we stopped.  Alectra told me that in Paint Shop Pro she had a way to give the legs, a more latex feel, as she has done this in several photos.  So I sent her the Photoshop files of the last two versions, and she is going to give it the final edit.

Last thing.. Alectra is really a class act.  I was happy to honestly fully give her this.  By that, I mean that I was willing to sit back and let her take credit for making the logo herself.  I would get my enjoyment just knowing that she was happy.  But when I offered that she replied with "Nah don't worry I wouldn't claim over something that I didn't do it myself.", and even asked me to make up this post.

That's class!

1 comment:

  1. I'm big time blushing over that last line so... "blush" thank you so much for showing off the how to do it! I really learnt a bit from just looking at it and yes I can work around the photoshop files and I've retouched it playing with the highlights a bit and playing with the lightning another bit also played around (a lot of play I know but then It wouldn't Alectra's Playgrounds "giggle") the contrast and the luminosity and I think I've done a bit of good work by trial and error. Still there are some retouches over the brightness and trying not to crop the drawing too ^-^

    I know you said you don't play around lightning too much but I do find it quite useful for giving differents feels to a picture.

    For example:

    I gave it a blurry effect over the background in your cap by playing with those effects. I know its kind of an "easy job" but I do find interesting enough.

    I wanted to give it some haziness related to the mental state your are passing through for wearing the mask and not knowing if you are Caitlyn or Calvin during these moments. And of course a bit of insight into it:

    I made it following the idea of a crossdressing but not forced and quite voluntary but always with a third party (not known in the story) thats orders you around!

    Also there is enough to the photo to make you think you are wearing a wig and you have applied over make up with the aid of a good mask and et voila! you are incredible female in the masquerade.

    I normally look around images to cap but this one just blown me three countries away "giggle"

    And hey one have to start over somewhere to get the feeling of PSP or Quark or Photoshop! "giggle"

    Hugs and Kisses Alectra