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Is there a standard naming convention for design phases, as in rounds of revisions, that’s not just Concept 1, Concept 2, etc.?

I know that my agency uses Concept Phase, then Copy Layout, then Keyline 1, 2, 3, etc., but I feel like those don’t make sense when I’m communicating the current phase of work when I submit it to clients.

Example: "Here are the changes you requested from the last keyline phase. We are now moving into Keyline 2 with any further revisions."

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Naming conventions depend on what works for each employee/dept./company.

I use conventions that make sense to me. I either tag on a date, like rev0807, or _draft, _revision, _final, etc.

It's important that they are identifiable, so I try to be pretty specific. If someone besides me will be making changes, I might use _sarah_rev_0807.

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Don`t think there is a standard, but there may be inhouse standards built by your organisation or your own.

After 12 years in the business and going through different naming schemes, i found the most useful for me is to name drafts as numbers. Eg. 01, 02, 03, etc. There will be a separate folder with previews sent to the client at different stages and these will also be named 01, 02, 03, etc.

About the date, every one of these files has a system date assigned which is clearly visible via the file browser, so i will not bother to include a date in the filenames, although this is sometimes useful when sending out drafts to clients.

For projects developing over a longer period (a few months) i will reset this counter at some point and name the latest draft "01" and delete older drafts, especially if an intermediate milestone is agreed with the client.

Then when the job is finished and delivered, in most cases i will just keep the final editable (in most cases with no older versions) and i will also backup the final deliverables (jpgs, pdfs, etc).

  • Date is a good name differentiatior if you dont want to manage things in a more complex manner, easy way out as it is. – joojaa Aug 8 '16 at 6:51
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As I've worked in an IT firm for quite some time (and still do btw) I've adapted the software conventions of dot updates and version updates. I use the date as the first differentiation, and version numbers as second.

I also use clients name and project name, so my final folder structure is something like:

  • v1
    • 20160705-1.0.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160705-1.0.1-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160706-1.1.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
  • v2
    • 20160707-2.0.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160708-2.1.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160708-2.1.1-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160708-2.2.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
  • v3
    • 20160709-3.0.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160710-3.1.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai
    • 20160711-3.2.0-Client_Name-Project_name.ai

Of course, the choice of when to use a version upgrade and when to use a dot upgrade are kind of arbitrary. But usually, you'll know which is which. And since most people are familiar with this system (especially since app updates are so common and fast) they'll understand it and keep to it.

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