October '22

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5 8 G R A P H I C S P R O • O C T O B E R 2 0 2 2 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M to eliminate the question that is already in the prospect's mind; "Yeah, it's a nice design or idea, but how will it look on a black shirt, or on a box van, a coffee cup, or on a building storefront?" Putting it together upfront also lets the prospect know that you have thought these ideas through and have looked at how they will look when used in the envi- ronments they will be viewed within. HOW DO YOU LEARN ABOUT THE PROSPECTS' CUSTOMERS? It's easy, just grab your brick phone, jump in your '72 Pinto, and head on down to the public library, where you can research your little heart out! Fortunately, you can do the research needed anywhere, any- time, from your cell phone. e prospect may share that info with you if you ask them the right questions. Understanding their customer upfront is one way to show the prospect you are a professional, that your time and theirs is important, and S I G N A G E & P R I N T I N G S I G N D E S I G N START OFF IN GRAYSCALE In this example, I explained to the client up front that the design ideas would be presented in grayscale. This allows the logo's strengths to shine through – and it avoids any color preferences that may sway the viewers likes or dis- likes of the design. Rarely ever does a client envision a design in grayscale. Most people who are not graphically trained cannot do this. This announce- ment is like wiping their creative slate clean and that is exactly what you want to happen at this point. Sometimes, as it happened with this client, the fact that the logo was in grayscale helped them visualize a completely grayscale graphics theme. If they wanted to add color, I would be able to do so with confidence as they have already approved the design in grayscale. This method eliminates revi- sion requests because the first step and first round of designs were created and presented on my terms, within my constructed mental arena, so that I can take them to each new realization of how contrast, font, and layout work together to create a specific look and feel. It eliminates the "dart throwing to see what sticks" method, which almost always turns into a dead-end street of endless revisions. Each option shown here addresses and embraces different aspects of the graphic and font combination. The dark background helped the client decide on which option would work the best and which would be most easily duplicated and incorpo- rated into a memorable graphic identity. If a request to "see the design with purple" is presented, it is actually part of a step that is part of the process. Because you followed a logical process for creating the design, adding color is a process that you direct, not a random collection of "let's see how this looks." Maintaining design control means that going backward to a previous step is easy and makes the whole process trackable and logical. Image courtesy Matt Charboneau

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