We help people transform their workflow and photos, either through better shooting technique or through post-processing. A nice example of a logo (here an icon) that gives this idea of a "transformation"/improvement happening to the customer visiting the site is the Noiseless CK icon:
but not with the squeegee (scraper)—that's their idea to say "remove noise." :)
We're looking for a logo with a fairly square-to-vertical aspect ratio. We want to avoid panoramic logos; think of it as looking good on a vertical business card or in a website sidebar.
The ideal logo will be fairly fun and distinctive, but not targeted at children, so not too youthful!
TOPIC(S) TO COMMUNICATE:
The logo will reference photography in some way, but will avoid the generic shutter element (it is ok to reinvent the shutter; just not the completely symmetric and geometric version). It's also about the outdoors and teaching photography, so there are a few things to play with. We don't need absolutely everything (photo+outdoor+teaching+fun+website) to be in the logo—that would be a very busy logo! :)
Don't focus too much on the "magic" part. It's not a magic site, but is reference to the fact that being out in nature can be magical and beautiful. So, no magician hats and magic wands, please! :)
A camera is an obvious choice, but if the "photo" is clearly legible, that it is not essential for a camera to be in the logo. A recognizable reference to nature/landscapes is welcome, such as a river, lake, mountain, waves, forests.
We live in New England (Maine), so we like the Red Leaf and Vegan Kitty examples above. The maple (red leaf) and oak (vegan kitty) are trees that live here and have beautiful colors in the fall.
As we're also about teaching, there can be a reference to that in the logo, such as a Lightroom-style slider. Most of you use Adobe products, so you certainly know what I mean. It would communicate the idea that "we help you make good adjustments/settings/workflow for good pictures."
The logo should work in print and on screen, so very bright colors and neon/glowing colors might not work as well. Colors that evoke nature would be preferred, so fall/autumn colors, as well as aqua/blue/purple.
The logo should evoke that we make things easier, more relaxing. Purples and blues would convey that. Too much highly saturated red/orange can be to "aggressive"/high-energy for our purpose.
Coloring the name is perfectly fine. If using several colors, the split should be Outdoor | Magic | Photo . Outdoor should not be split.
Fonts should be legible from a distance, so not too complex (i.e., gothic, extreme cursive). A clean sans serif or a nice readable cursive / handwriting would be preferred.
Text can be uppercase or lowercase, but we suspect that uppercase or small caps might be easier to read. We're open to ideas, though!
Avoid very small details. Those are hard to see from a distance. We will likely have the logo embroidered on a shirt or a hat, too, and fine details would be lost in stitching.
I hope this helps. Let me know if you have questions!