Below are some graphic design tips that were submitted by JCD readers earlier this week as part of our 5000+ subscribers celebration.
Submit Your Own Graphic Design Tip & Win $50
If you leave a design related tip on this post (or already did on the other post) you could win $50 to spend on any design related paraphernalia at Creatives Outfitter courtesy of the kind Jon Phillips of Spryre Studios.
You could also win a 30 minute design consultation via Skype or Email with David Airey, the much respected designer and blogger from Edinburgh, Scotland.
All you have to do is submit your own design (or business or freelance) related tip! Be creative as you like however remember that the prize will be given to the person with the best tip as chosen by Jon and myself!
$50 for Creative’s Outfitter Prize Winner:
The winner of the $50 (picked by Jon) to spend at Creative’s Outfitter is Toon who gave us this tip below.
“Remember YOU are the designer, no matter how many ideas the client may have make sure you’re controlling the direction of the project, after all you are the professional, if they could do it themselves they wouldn’t be paying you.
Sometimes being forceful with a client can save you time and money in the long run.”
Update: Toon kindly asked to pass the prize on so the next winner me and Jon agreed on was Bruce Colthart who gave us the tip below. Congratulations.
“Learn all you can about business marketing in particular so that your design work is as relevant as possible to your client, who in most cases, wants your help attracting prospects and growing their business. Become more than an art monkey; become a valued consultant, an unofficial ‘partner’ in the success of your client’s business. Don’t think in terms of “I like this because:” Rather, think “this will work best for you because:”
Design Consultation with David Airey Winner:
The winner of the design consultation is Kerry Jessep who gave us the tip below. What I liked about this tip was how Kerry mentioned “Exert all of your communication skills to ascertain what your client needs.” – something all designers must do.
“Clearly state how many revisions you will do on a design and exert all of your communication skills to ascertain what your client needs. If you have a difficult to please client, offer them an hourly rate, so they can revise as much as they like and you will both end up happy.”
Design Tips from JCD Readers
Ever get a unusable logo from a client or need a particular logo that hasn’t been provided? Go to the company’s website and see if you can find a PDF with their logo:a brochure, their annual report, something. Download the PDF, open the PDF in Illustrator and then, if you are lucky, you will find the vector version of their logo inside.
If you provide a potential client with an estimate of say $1000, and they respond with “Well, can we make it $600. Deal?”; Respond confidently, and say “We do not discount our work and quality so we do not discount our prices.”
from Brian Yerkes
Never show a client a concept that you don’t love and believe in:it will be the one they pick.
from Kai Chan Vong
Always assume your client will say “What about this:” When you’re done with your project try to pick apart your work and prepare answers for the most likely “what about this” situations.
from David Klien
Design for the ‘little’ clients, like they were the ‘big’ clients.
from Alex Charchar
Let the world know that you mean business. Take a stand and don’t accept anything less.
from Doug Cloud
Create quality work, get quality work in return. You reap what you sow, basically. If you are always producing crummy work because you think you just have to get by until you make it big, you’ll only ever get low-quality work to do in return. You attract the quality you put out there, so always do your best.
from Lauren Marie
For all your designs use space for enough air, balance & readability. Think before you use a typeface, ask yourself what is the purpose of the design I’m making right now? Then select the right typeface and take a close look at kerning and alignment within your design.
Never use the font Comic Sans MS.
More often than not, simple is best.
Nothing is ever a “final” draft in this industry. And the problem with this as a designer is you need to be able to find that “final” draft and stick to it. Accomplish your goals, and stick to your guns.
from Dan Raftis
Even when you are a solopreneur, you are the leader of your tiny company. Make sure you, your website, and your printed materials look and behave accordingly, and someday you’ll lead a company as large as you hope for. You’re not “just” a freelancer. Be a leader.
1. Treat others as you would like to be treated.
2. Listen and thus learn.
3. Be honest.
Stay up to date. Be current in your approaches to design and always try to improve upon yourself. Look at things you see and admire, and strive your hardest, not just to achieve the same, but to surpass it.
from Zach LeBar