Monday, September 12, 2011

Hiring a Graphic Designer: The Process

What do you want?
I’m talented, but can’t always read minds. Even if it’s just a general concept, have some idea of how you’d like your product to look. Color schemes, logo design, and slogans are all necessary to consider before you even call me. Also prepare to answer my questions to save both you and I time and money. If I have a better picture of what you’re looking for, I can hash out some creative ideas before even getting started on the design.
A good designer will tell you how much they charge per hour and how many hours a project is expected to take. Make sure you lay it on the table how much you are willing to pay before you set the hours, otherwise you might find yourself paying much more than you intended. I will always discuss budget and everything you need designed beforehand so I can give you an accurate quote. I will never start your design before giving you a flat rate based on the extent of the project. To ensure I will not be wasting my time creating “ideas” for you, I will always ask for at least 50% down before I begin the design process. This is non-refundable, but I promise to make every effort to ensure you end up with exactly what you want.
Look at my portfolio, but more importantly, ask for my previous client’s contact information. You may come across someone whose work you really admire but have no idea what their credentials are, don’t be afraid to ask me for a reference from someone I have designed for in the past. Remember, the end result may look good in the portfolio, but you have no idea the time and money it may have taken to get there. My references will ease your fear of a long, drawn out design process.
Stay in Contact:
Once you and I have agreed upon a price and discussed your needs, I am ready to begin designing. I will give you a clear timeline, and I will keep you posted with proofs throughout the process to make sure we are on the right track. I will not disappear for days at a time, and I will never leave you hanging.
Once you have seen the proofs and agreed on a final design, you will surely want to obtain the original design files. I cannot stress the importance of this enough: I make sure you acquire all original files in case you need to make future edits. If you prefer not to keep the original files, I can’t guarantee I will have your original logo file on hand in 3 years when you’re computer crashes. Some designers don’t like doing this, but if you’re launching a business, you really have to be prepared for anything. I will ensure you receive either a cd or a zipped folder with all of the original design files upon completion and payment.

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