How to Export Your Logo Files Like a Pro
#theydontteachthisincollege (why not??)
What NOT to do: Export your logos manually in all file formats, creating new variations on the fly, as needed 🙈
Over the years I've improved my system into a basic, repeatable checklist that I can do on autopilot. So I'm sharing it here with you now - so that you can skip the years of trial and error and start exporting your logos quickly and efficiently.
Logo variations you should be creating
You'll need a separate art board for each of these
Duplicate those art boards for each of these color variations:
full color (CYMK)
1 color (black)
1 color (white)
full color (Pantone)
Adjust the edges of the art boards to fit the logo without too much margin so that the exported files are more user-friendly.
File types you should be exporting
Make sure to name your art boards properly so that the exported file names are accurate.
If I did my algebra correctly, that's around 84 files! So you do NOT want to be doing this manually every time you create a logo.
I find that the easiest way to do it is by logo orientation. This works best with my design process - when I'm looking to place the logo into a design, I usually know which logo orientation I need, but I need to alternate between different colors to find the best fit for that design.
Based on Logo Orientation:
For example: Horizontal > JPG > [logo files] Full Color, Reverse, White, Black
Another option that might work for you is to do it based on logo color:
For example: Full Color > JPG > [logo files] Horizontal, Vertical, Circle, Icon
Exporting Logo Files from Illustrator
Step 1 - Create Your Art Boards
Create an art board the shape of each of your logo variations/orientations - horizontal, vertical, icon etc. Make sure the art boards are reasonably large since that's the size they're going to export. I try to keep them a minimum of 5x5in but the larger the merrier. Once that's done, duplicate that set of art boards for each color option you want to create - full color, reverse, white, black etc. and adjust the logo colors accordingly.
Don't forget to name your art boards properly since that will be the name of each file you export.
Step 2 - Create Your Folders
In Finder (or Windows Explorer) create the folders that you will be placing your logos into. Follow the structure that works the best for your design process. These are the folders I create:
[Client Name] Logo FINAL
When you export - Illustrator will automatically create JPG, PNG, PDF and SVG folders for you within ant folder you choose, so you don't have to make those.
Step 3 - Export Your Logos
Start exporting and watch Illustrator do the work for you!
Go to File > Export > Export for Screens
Under Export To - select the folder for the first logo orientation you want to export
Check "Create Sub-folders" based on "Format"
Under "Format" add:
PNG, set the Scale to Resolution - 300ppi
JPG 100 (or the highest number you see), set the Scale to Resolution - 300ppi
PDF - right above this section you can now choose to export your PDFs in 1 file or a separate file for each art board (I prefer multiple files)
I set all my suffixes to "None" but you can add them in if you want to. You can also add in different scales for JPG and PNG if you want to but I've never found that to be useful.
Select the art boards you want to export (for example, if you're exporting Horizontal orientation you'll want to only check off your horizontal logos in all color variations)
Step 4 - Delete Unnecessary JPGs
Because we exported all file formats simultaneously, you'll end up with extra JPGs that you don't need - such as white or reverse. So head back into your JPG folders and delete those files.
And there you have it! All your logos, in all variations, colors, and file formats, with just a few minutes of work.