Personal Logo Design

I have always been a fascinated by two diametrically opposed things: skeletons and deep sea creatures without them (cephalopods, more accurately). I felt my personal brand should reflect both of these fascinations, beginning with my own past studying biology and archaeology.

Initial Explorations

These first two iterations incorporated color, line width variation, and playing with bisecting lines. The first I dismissed for using too many thin lines, and the tentacles not being distinguishable enough. The second has more duality, both in color and subject matter. The skull is clearly defined and bisected on the left side, while the tentacle is more free-form on the right. While I did prefer this treatment of the logo, once again the thin lines made it difficult to distinguish, and the subtle tones and details are ultimately lost. The use of green and aqua tones in both, meant to represent energy and growth, are overpowered by the other shapes in the design.

Further Explorations

Using the serif uppercase “T” as the centerpiece of the logo helped relate the logo to my person in several ways. It is, obviously, the first letter of my name, which helps ground the opposing skull-and-tentacle motif. Removing colors from the logo helped further simplify it visually, and speaks to my minimal aesthetic and design philosophy. I also explored minimalist designs using just geometric shapes. While they were clean and easy to visually parse, I felt that these didn’t relate to me as much as some of the other designs.

Final Design: The Skull-and-Tentacle


Based on the serif font, Hoefler, the “T” is the centerpiece of the design. It recalls the past; hand-set typography or even older Latin inscriptions on stone. The Hoefler font family uses extended ligature sets, the engraved capitals of the early twentieth century, and the arabesques of the renaissance in a seamless blend of old- and new-world printing. It was chosen because of its graceful curving lines that evoke the biological forms that are the rest of the design.

Using symmetry makes all aspects of the logo easier to read. Now all elements work in harmony. The tentacles, representing both my love of squids and octopuses and my lifelong goal of remaining flexible, curious, and ego-less in my designs are clearly shown. The skull, which connects me to my past as an archaeologist and my future as a skeleton, as well as representing my ability to see past the obvious and empathize with people is also easily distinguishable.

It’s me!

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