Solving a digital design task is like a make-up artist transforming someone’s physical appearance. The make-up artist doesn’t sit down immediately and start painting away on someone’s face. He or she conceptualizes and analyzes before any form of action is taken.
When speaking to a client it is important to understand the ideas and passion of that individual before beginning the design process. As an expert in digital-design it is the designer’s job to guide the client through the creative process and help steer them properly through your ideas and creative conceptualizations. That is what you were hired for: to be creative. The art of taking a concept and turning it into an aesthetically pleasing piece of creative is a daily task all designers face. Whether it’s fashion, digital, editorial or make-up there will always be a challenge of taking someone’s idea and turning it into something beautiful. The key is expectation management and trust.
“The life of a designer is a life of fight: fight against the ugliness. Just like a doctor fights against disease. For us, the visual disease is what we have around, and what we try to do is to cure it somehow, with design” –Massimo Vignelli
As a digital designer’s knowledge base grows and skill sets develop, the marketing world continues to evolve with new opportunities. In addition, as a creative department grows within a company the challenge of maintaining expectations becomes more pronounced. Personally, I have always noticed the competitive edge that designers hold. As departments evolve and expectations change the challenge becomes to maintain focus in a increasingly hectic environment. Digital designers always want to be the best and they want their work to be used and seen by as many people as possible. Everyone has his or her own inspirations and motivations that drive them to do amazing visual work. The key to digital-design is quality, not quantity.
As marketing agencies and other companies continue grow, and creative departments develop, the importance of collaboration and trust becomes embedded into the mission statement. Trusting the work ethic around you and understanding the personalities of each individual is a valuable characteristic to succeed on any design team. Like Massimo Vignelli said, “the life of the designer is a fight.”
Whether it’s a prospective or current client that you are interested in (or not), the level of work must always be pushed to the maximum. Being successful at design isn’t about how much you’re doing, but how much value you get in return.