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34

It seems you and your client use different definitions of the word "original". You seem to mean it in the sense that you created the emoticons from scratch without copying anyone else. Your client seem to mean it in the sense that they look too much like other emoticons already out there. Compare this to much of pop-music. Most songs are original in the ...


27

Here's how I tackle layout and workflow concepts. Do something. Anything. And do that thing knowing that it doesn't have to be good. It just has to exist. It's not an end, it's a beginning. It's just a way to stop you from staring at a blank page. Then do an alternative design. Quickly. Don't think about it too much. Then another. Don't despair if they'...


20

Well since you all are leaving the question open here's my genuine answer: When I run out of ideas I like to do things like booze, sex, go to the beach, read, write, paint, sculpt, dance, travel. My mind has never been expanded less then when trying to force expansion while stuck. //Edit Wanted to clarify the booze - I mean among friends at a bar, lounge, ...


19

Universal/Cross-media useage Every logo has to work in black/white only. A logo needs often to be "cut". Logos attached to t-shirts, caps, cars & signs, so you need clean outlines for foil cutting. Which means: Keep it simple and your lines clean. No one can cut the lines you see in the pathview below. Your logo has to work even on low resolution ...


14

Ask yourself these questions: How many UI layouts/options can you explore in 30 minutes by coding? How many can you explore by sketching? How often do you get a UI design exactly right on the very first try? If not very often, how quick/easy is it to change a sketch versus a coded mockup? Can you instantly identify a color just by looking at its hex/rgb ...


13

5 simple steps for producing ideas James Young's A Technique for Producing Ideas outlines a deceptively simple system that requires great discipline to complete. I followed pieces of his approach instinctively before discovering it but keeping Young's five steps in mind has helped me expand my output. Gather raw materials: Flood your brain with the subject ...


13

While I generally side with you that original work implies that you performed the work from scratch, I must ask a few questions: Did the client approach you about this or did you pitch it to the client? If you are the one that pitched the idea then the client trusted you to truly wow them since they are likely paying a premium for these original ...


12

I've found when I don't have a clear winner its because of a few reasons: I didn't set up inspiration boards. Contrary to what most people say its GOOD to have reference, not always but most of the time. Being inspired and stealing are completely different things. I didn't set up clearly defined needs for design. Who is the audience? What are some designs ...


11

In design, this is often viewed as unnecessary ornamentation. Is it necessary? No? Then it's unnecessary. Additional elements should only be added with a purpose. To draw the viewers attention, to make them feel a certain way, to create a composition that makes the information more easily readable, etc. and should never be an end in itself.


9

Specially if you work on your own and you haven't done that many logos, the process can be quite straightforward: One or two main ideas, some alternative executions, and a final agreement. Maybe you are happy with the result, maybe it doesn't really seem to mean that much. When I came across these examples about a year ago (had to regoogle it), it ...


9

Related: Whose responsibility is to give budget for job: Freelancer or Client from freelance.stackexchange.com I never ask for budget. I have my pricing. I price what is inline with my pricing. Then the client can mention their budget if they want to. To me "What's your budget" has only a few outcomes: The Client lies about budget in order to get you to ...


9

Yes, It is totally legitimate. It's usually the second question I ask after whats the project about. "What kind of budget are we dealing with?" This can give you a general idea if it falls in your realm and worth your time. Generally over email or phone. I usually prefer phone a call, you can hear about the project, budget and get a feel for the ...


8

Transfer the problem to something completely different. For example, if you are stuck with a webdesign, sketch what the design with similar brief could look like were it a building, a dress, a wallpaper, a airplane, ... -- The idea here being that you can forget about the actual limitations of your media and technical requirements and think about the ...


8

Look and feel is a brand thing Your visual decisions should not only be based on information architecture but an essence, a personality that's unique the brand in question. Your first steps should have nothing to do with execution. No type, colors, images, graphics. That will come later as a logical extension of the brand. Start with Demographics ...


8

The secret is: Your brain lies. If you were to draw what your brain says it would be wrong in so many ways that it would hurt. Your brain can get an awful idea thats missing 90% of everything cool and it could still seem perfect. You can't draw it because its not real, its just an illusion that stops you from second guessing yourself. If there would be no ...


8

Some thoughts first. There is a chance the feeling of stealing could be because you try to explore a finished product too deeply and not the general idea, the initial feeling. 1) Do not look for detail As a first step, instead of seeing your idea as the image you posted, try just to see a blurred, non-detailed image: This is the same process as the one ...


8

This question is probably a bit too opinion based for this site, but here's my opinion anyway: You should absolutely include the previous version of the logo and clearly label it as such. As you mention yourself, it serves to better illustrate your process. It also allows people to see that you have a developed sense of context and market sensitivity. It ...


7

Welcome to GD.SE, and thank you for a great question. It's one that challenges designers often enough that I'm guessing there will be plenty of answers. Based on what you say, I think the key is, "I'm confused because they are." The way to reduce any confusion, in design or anywhere else, is to pick ONE item out of the morass and start with that. It almost ...


7

First off: I can only speak for print and general cases, for I have zilch experience with video. Bear with me. I don't think there's hard and fast rules to determine the 'right' amount of fluff. Left-brainers will hate me, but I guess it's one of those things that just has to 'feel' right without being quantifiable. Moreover, there's other factors at work, ...


6

One of the best places that I use to get creative is Stumbleupon. Between that and getting to the gym early in the morning, I can usually break out of a creative block. Creativity is all about discipline, but those two things help me a lot.


6

I am not a product designer, nor do I play one on social media but ... Do not circulate your designs without an NDA! You need to entice your prospective clients/manufacturers to meet with you, sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement), then present the idea. In a perfect world, you'd also patent your design. But that's not a cheap process and I suspect you ...


6

I think it's better to show 3 different concepts but that also depend on your contract and how much time you want to spend on this. With design, I like to say "everything is possible it's just more expensive." So it depends on the budget of the logo, how fast you create and in how much time it needs to be done. If you work as an in-house designer for a ...


6

If you listen to the godfather of corporate logo design, Paul Rand (and really, you should) you show one idea: The arguments for this approach is that the client has hired you based on your existing work. As such, they want your skill set and experience and they should trust your skill set and experience. You, as a trusted, experienced designer should ...


6

You can always copy it through the Duplicate Layer dialog, which you can get by right clicking the item you want to duplicate in layer pane and select your other artboard as destination.


6

I think you should include this in your portfolio as a logo redesign. Because that's what it is, no matter if it originally came from a stock website or not, that doesn't even matter. It's a second take on a logo. If you google logo redesign you can find very fun and creative ways to display redesigns, most even emphasise at what points the new logo is ...


6

Never discard sketches. They may contain ideas and inspiration for other projects or even later versions of the same project. At the very least, you can reflect on them later and be inspired for new work. They can also serve to illustrate a point when presenting your work. For example, if a certain shape or other decision seems a very obvious obvious choice ...


5

I'd vote for "drawing" first. In GUI, proper layout/presentation is the key and it calls for visual means to be designed. Designing GUI visually lets you rapidly change your design without having to "imagine" each change, "translate it to code" and finally test it. The other way is also possible, but it's rarely better (e.g. project is extremely small, like ...


5

“Half of art is knowing when to stop.” - Arthur William Radford I always remind myself that I see everything 50,000 times more than anyone else ever will. It's very, very important to have fresh eyes on things regularly. I try and work on a variety of projects which entail different designs entirely. This way, if I feel one design may not be up to par, so ...


5

To be perfectly frank, the best answer is "Whatever works for you." or "Whatever the project calls for." A great deal of my workflow is determined by the project itself. For example, if creating a basic cartoon or comic piece of artwork, I often start with pen and paper and then scan, Image Trace, and clean up in Illustrator. However, there are also times ...


5

[updated clarification: Before meeting with the client? Likely, no. That is just the wrong time to ask. But as early as possible in the discovery/scope defining process? Absolutely.] The job of a designer (or anyone providing a business service, for that matter) is to provide a solution that meets the business objectives of the client. If your solution ...


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