Always make your documents attractive, legible and easy to use regardless of whether they are printed or delivered electronically.
In the world of super-modernity, a bus ticket can’t be just a bus ticket. It has to exhibit the branding of the bus company; it might carry an advertisement; and it will use sophisticated computerized tyopgraphy.
It’s only a bus ticket, yet we’ve turned it into a scrap of commercial graphic theatre that utilizes the brainpower of designers, marketing people and IT people.
Learning to deal with failure is an essential skill for all creative people. Everyone has work rejected. But good ideas are good ideas, and what one client rejects might find acceptance with another, so we should never see failure as total.
However, the only way to deal with rejection is to accept responsibility for it. It’s only by doing this that we can turn rejection into success.
How do we know which books to read? There are so many to choose from we couldn’t read them all – not to mention the blogs and magazines – even if we wanted to. One of the ways we decide is by studying reading lists. And there’s no shortage of reading lists to choose from.
Interrogating clients is an essential part of being a designer. If we don’t learn to ask questions, we run the risk of never getting to the heart of what good design can be. No question is ever too dumb to ask, and if we are frightened of exposing our ignorance we will never understand anything.
In life, you will become known for doing what you do. That sounds obvious, but it’s profound. If you want to be known as someone who does a particular thing, then you must start doing that thing immediately. Don’t wait. There is no other way. It probably won’t make you money at first, but do it anyway. Work nights. Work weekends. Sleep less.
Whatever you have to do.
There are dominant emotional and behavioral currents that run through society, and designers often have a knack of being able to read these cultural waves. Each generation has its own, and like a baton in a relay race, it gets handed on to the next generation. Yet each time the baton is transferred, it changes.
We don’t have to immerse ourselves in it, but we have to be able to spot it.
Always finish with a conclusion. This must be short (no more than 100 words) and should be an at-a-glance overview of the proposal. It allows those who can’t be bothered to read your entire document to have it all in one hit. It is always advisable to add a copyright line to any proposal. And a cheerful ‘thank you’.
Clients have a habit of failing to explain the stuff that to them is grindingly obvious. They are quick to accuse designers of failing to understand their business, yet they often make the mistake of not explaining what they understand implicitly. They just assume everyone knows what they know.