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SHOTZ Blog for News Views and Clues
Designer V's Client; How to Work Together
Shotz print Blog - SHOTZ Print Design
Friday, 17 December 2010 13:38
A question posted to SHOTZ by socialbuzzAUS was this.

"@shotzprint why do printing designers go off on their own tangent when you've told them specifically what you want?"


This is not the first time we have heard this, I hope this post goes some way to answering it.

You go to a designer and  ask for a new brochure, "like this" maybe it's something you have seen before, something absolutely perfect for what you need. It's worth asking yourself how many copies you think may have been printed.  A 500,000 copy print run can have some pretty fancy dies made to do the job cheaply.  If you have 50 copies made the cost for setting up could be enormous. So the designer thinks they are doing you a favor by giving you an easy print job and/or some things just can't be done. He/she should explain that to you. Your designer should try to rein in your enthusiasm a little to make sure you don't overspend.
Going off on tangents is part of the territory and sometimes a better solution can be obtained this way.

On the flip side; not all graphic artists are great communicators.  Nor are some clients.

As Banner frog put it "@shotzprint @socialbuzzAUS - sometimes getting a brief out of a client is like extracting teeth. They just don't know what they want" "more time spent on the brief, the more spent on design and not on revising the initial concept."

The key here is obviously in the communication. Meet with the designer. Get to know them a little, see if you can work together. If they are dismissive of your ideas without explanation then you're better off looking for another designer. They should give you options within the budget and timeframe.

Try to go to the designer with some ideas of your own, and be ready to change them. They appreciate a sample or two to help them understand what you want.  Remember that designers and printers have a different vocabulary and that may be confusing if it's not your industry.  So don't be afraid to ask for an explanation in real-people speak.

If you don't know what you need then explain that at the start and just tell the designer what you want it to do. Then trust them to know what you need. You hired them for their expertise and experience, so if you are paying for it; make the best use of it.

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