Like a fine wine...
...good design takes time. There are efficient routes, but no short cuts. I do reinvent the wheel by creating custom solutions for specific problems. The only formula seems to be that the process is organic.
By looking at the Design Distillation Process, one can see the steps and why the design process is not simple nor something to breeze through. Let's take a look designing a logo and the typical hours entailed to develop to completion.
1. Assess goals and requirements: 2 hours
What's does the client want to achieve?
2. Build a roadmap: 2 hours
The project is scoped, deliverables are defined, and an estimate with schedule is agreed upon.
3. Dive into discovery: 3 hours
Analyze the history, differentiating factors, audience, market, competitors, and every bit of information one can collect.
4. Design: 20-40 hours
Activate creativity and design a wide variety of design options, both logo and logotype solutions.
5. Develop and refine: 15-30 hours
Push and pull design for several rounds, while assuring the objectives are achieved. Start testing the logo on various applications and assessing it's ability to come to life and flex.
6. Execute (for a logo this is prepping for all formats and mediums): 6 hours
Save logo in all file formats, color ways and sizes. The level of complexity depends on the size of company and number of applications.
That's 48-84 hours total. And some logos call for more. Or, a client can just get one of those logos online for $10. I wonder how long those "designers" spend on the logos they "design".