let's get together

Initial meetings with new clients can sometimes result in the client taking a creative lead. Driving the creative process, presumably because of cost implications and ensuring value for money or perhaps an unwillingness to let someone else hold the baby for a while, but being creative in business is a very different thing to being creative for a living. I often ask myself why someone is happy to pay a fee and yet not take the advice? Why is it designers are the last to be consulted around a table of sales and finance teams when it comes to creative direction? When it's 'this is what we want' rather than 'here's the challenge, what's the solution'?

There's no doubt that creativity is in us all. We all want our ideas to be realised, to see things from our point of view - and this is generally the mistake. From a designers perspective, we are looking down the lens of a customer, what do they want to see? Good communication is about good presentation and good message. As designers we strive to achieve this through image, layout, content and brand.

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So what's the solution? How does it fit together? The relationship between client and designer must be balanced - quality information client-side and arresting creative representation agency-side. Great information, facts and figures are the ingredients for the creative process and when allowed to be boldly communicated, a brand can shine very bright indeed. A concise brief is a great idea. It means facts, figures and outline concepts are documented for everyone in the process, it allows the designer a clearer concept of the end result.

in-house v outsourcing?

Transient

An excellent podcast about the do's and don'ts of hiring a person or an agency to represent your business. Paul Boag is one of the three founders of Headscape. He speaks extensively on web related subjects both on his web design podcast and conferences around the world. He is the author of three web design related books and writes extensively for various online and off-line publications. He has been working on the web since 1994 and loves it as much now as he did then.

Click here for the podcast

stellar performance at spring fair 2014

As part of an extended brief, we were asked to design a 6mx3m exhibition space for January Spring Fair 2014 held each year at Birmingham NEC. From November 2013, we've been working with fellow designer Andy Paterson-Jones, re-branding 'Stellar' Party People. Formerly Posh Party Products, the company wanted to change their approach to the market & offer a wider product base. Having completed the core brand in late 2013, we worked with an exhibition company to develop the space & implement brand guidelines set up by Andy & us.

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Part of the requirement was a 60 second looped animation playing on the stand. We incorporated some iconography to align the customer with the brand directives. These icons will represent an easier way of navigating around a growing product list online. We're currently polishing and putting collateral like the website in place. See the branding project here.