Welcome to the first-ever Behind the Logo series blog. We will be chatting with creators worldwide to discuss what went into making their logos and the special meaning it has to them. We will start off the series with a creator I know really well, as it is mine.
My logo has been through a few iterations. From designs that had no real meaning to what I have now, the design process was always nerve-racking, but at the same time enjoyable to come up with designs.
Way before the Crafting Geeks magazine and creator directory, I did not know many creators in the TTRPG community. I am also absolutely horrible at anything art-related, so I went to what I thought was the best and cheapest option for my logo design. The great Fiverr. At Fiverr, you never know what kind of product you will get, and opening the email with your finished product is like opening a pack of baseball cards. You get so excited hoping to pull that game-worn jersey, but generally, it tends to be a bunch of cards that have no real meaning to you.
My original thought was to have a dragon. I had just started to play Dungeons and Dragons and thought, of course, I certainly need a dragon in my logo. So I logged into Fiverr, found someone I wanted to commission, paid $30, and gave them a brief description of a dragon with the text DND-214 in a ribbon. Three days later, this is the logo I received.
They did meet the requirements stated in my description, but I really wanted to start making dice, and this just did not fit into my overall branding, but I still did not know what I wanted. The logo without the flames was also very close to the Mortal Kombat logo, so I decided never to use these logos.
So back to Fiverr, I went and gave pretty much the same description, but I wanted a camouflaged D6. The camouflage and the business name of DND-214 are both based on my time in the military. When you separate from active duty, you are given a DD-214. One day DND-214 popped into my head, and so many ideas started popping into my head for military-themed dice and other TTRPG accessories. It was apparent that I had to put that camo D6 in because everything would be perfect.
Once again, I was wrong on so many levels. The camo just does not look suitable for a logo, and well, I went with an even cheaper option on Fiverr…I know. I know. I will eventually learn (probably not). Once again, I get the notification that my logo has been completed, and I get this logo.
I now have a logo with a Dragon, a Camo D6, and yes, even the business name of DND-214. The dragon is actually not a commercially usable file, and it didn’t come with the license. This is a big issue with Fiverr. Many artists will use files from anywhere they can find them, which is not always correctly licensed. The numbers on the dice are all at odd angles, and the DND text is just so basic and plain. You know what they say. You get what you paid for. lol
Back to Fiverr, I went again, and this time, I kept and used the logos created for a good while. We had sold a few stickers and t-shirts using these designs, and I was pretty happy with the results.
The text looked a lot better. The dragons were not custom-designed, but we did have a license for their use. I really liked the Chinese Dragons look, and adding in some of the flourishes made it a bit more professional. We did add the tagline of We Got Your D6. A common saying in the military is, we got your six, meaning your back. This is a play on that, but with a bit more meaning. When stationed in Iraq, I attempted suicide by swallowing a bunch of pills. A fellow soldier carried me down many flights of stairs and over to the clinic. If it were not for him doing this, I would not be here today. So many soldiers take their lives, and I had always had a plan that we would start donating some of the proceeds to charities that focus on mental health for soldiers when my business took off.
While the business has not taken off the way I wanted it to, it is still a large part of our plan and something I put every effort into doing, but as I built DND-214 and slowly came up with the idea of Crafting Geeks the, We Got Your D6 gained even more meaning. Those of us in the handmade dice, TTRPG, and geek community need to have each other’s backs. We need to help promote others, support them when they are struggling, support them when they are thriving. Just always be there for each other. Our directory listing and magazine are my way of giving back. My way of having others “D6”. It takes a lot of work, but in the end, it is worth it.
My logo planning did not stop here, though. I am always looking to change things, to find something that really speaks to me and has full meaning. This is where we settled on our most current designs and the one we will be sticking with for the long haul.
For the DND-214 logo, we now have the partial outline of a D12. One of the faces is the logo used on my dice as a replacement for the 20 face of the D20. The text is simple but powerful. We have no dragons, and besides the fact that I love Dungeons and Dragons, it has no real meaning to me. This logo can be on t-shirts, stickers, cups, books, towels, embroidered items, etc., and still, look good.
From here, we decided to also get a Crafting Geeks logo created. While it is not a business entity on its own, it is a significant part of my brand. The masks represent cosplayers, the paintbrush for artists, the D20 for handmade dice makers. Crafting Geeks supports all geeky creators, and while we did not add anything to the logo for podcasters, TTRPG streamers, woodworkers, etc. We always support them and have big things planned for the future of Crafting Geeks.
We appreciate your time, and let us tell you our story, and hope you will take the time to support each other and show love to this new series of blog posts we are working on.
To get updates on all our content, make sure to follow us on social media by clicking on the links below.