Sign up ×
Graphic Design Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for Graphic Design professionals, students, and enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I am building web site, and I paid a designer to design my site,

What should the designer provide me?

  • png cut images?
  • psd file?
  • Should I insist on getting psd file?

What is the disadvantage of not getting psd?


share|improve this question

2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Your designer should provide you with final png/jpg/gif images if you have agreed that he or she will provide the actual site images. This is a less common case than simply creating the design as a Photoshop comp for the developer to work from.

Final images or not, your designer must supply the PSD(s) so you can have it as a backup and in case you need to make minor modifications. (Why it's important: Your designer may not always be around. He may be hijacked, hit by a meteor or win "[Country]'s Got Talent" and become a pop star. If anything like that happens, you will be very glad you have your own copy.

I insist that clients receive and archive original artwork files, even if they never plan to use them, because I've had too many experiences of picking up a new client -- whose original designer is long gone -- and finding they have no original logo artwork, no full-resolution images, no usable assets from which to create the new material they are looking for.

share|improve this answer
The designer "must" supply the PSD files only if it's written in the contract. There is no rule or law saying a contractor has to supply working files, just as there's no law that says a caterer has to give up their recipes. – ghoppe Jul 1 '11 at 0:03
I understand, but it should absolutely be in the contract, in my view. As a designer, I intend never to put my clients over a barrel. They come back to me because I deliver a great product and I'm good to work with, not because they have no choice. And if they have to go elsewhere for some reason, I want them to have the assets the next designer will need to work with. A designer who isn't willing to work on that basis is one I would not personally recommend. – Alan Gilbertson Jul 1 '11 at 0:35
I think most would disagree with that, Alan. Keep in mind that 'usable assets' don't have to be the work files. The output should absolutely be usable print/production ready files. There's a middle ground here. – DA01 Jul 1 '11 at 0:54
:-) Diversity of viewpoint is what makes the world a rich and engaging place. And creatives are a strong-minded bunch, by definition. – Alan Gilbertson Jul 1 '11 at 2:45

This would be something you'd agree upon when figuring out the contract. Handing over the work files is not necessarily common practice.

I'd argue you shouldn't be designing the site as PSD files to begin with, but that's a different topic.

share|improve this answer
Feel free to substitute "native program of your choice" for Photoshop. :) – Lauren Ipsum Jun 28 '11 at 21:09
@DAO1 "you shouldn't be designing the site as PSD files to begin with" you should ask that as a question :) IMO it all depends on the site. – Jin Jun 28 '11 at 21:25
This is the correct answer. Handing over work files is not common practice. – ghoppe Jul 1 '11 at 0:04

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.