My daily bread & butter

So how does good design work? Well it's not rocket science, honestly it's not. The following should give you some ideas as to how and why I work the way I do, and why in turn, it works for you.



tricks, thoughts and logic

Never underestimate the importance of being nice.

I know it's not technical or design related but it's an essential attribute when working as a freelancer. I believe wholeheartedly in treating others the same way I wish to be treated myself. I will always go the extra mile in order to create the perfect solution for my clients.

It's important to do so, not only for the fact that the work is more satisfying, but also because if one does a great job treating customers with respect, delivering awesome result, my clients recommend me to their friends. Word of mouth is a wonderful thing.

Be nice, it's far more rewarding!





We've all heard this one so many times before, but it really is true.

Whether it's the design of a logo, or the design of a printed brochure or even a website, the less there is for the view to digest, the better. I spent many years working in the world of transport advertising, where it was paramount to get the message over as quickly as possible. The adverts we created, despite the vast size of them, needed to be read by the view as quickly as possible. The concepts and tricks learnt from achieving that are transferable into all areas of design.





Everything is tailor made, just for you.

I believe that every solution, be it in branding, print or web, should be bespoke and tailor made for your specific requirements. It's heartbreaking as a creative to see templated work being passed off as a bespoke solution, it's deceptive and dishonest, and there's no pleasure to be had in that for anymore. I don't and will never do that.

I do use a simple grid system when designing web layouts called 960 in order to produced clean crisp alignment, and am moving into more modular grids for responsive web design, however this is purely grids and guides to create bespoke design solutions upon. It appeals very much to my inner geek.





What a load of gibberish?.

Sounds daft doesn't it? So what on earth do I mean by that? When I was being taught how to design transport advertising it was pressed into me that despite the adverts being huge, the viewer had such a small amount of time to read them, so why would they? That sounded so negative but actually it's a really positive tip. It's true that people can't be bothered to read push or pull on doors so that level of negativity pressed onto ones work means that it can be fined tuned so that it does work! Which is a positive thing. So how is that done ideally?





Subtle visual manipulations.

With transport advertising, it is vital to get the message across instantly. I've already pointed out that people can't be bothered to read push or pull on doors, it's something that we are all guilty of, so how do we make them read? What's more readable than words? Pictures, or specifically, one clear picture that speaks half of your message for you, a picture that instantly relates the viewer with the subject matter. With advertising, this is the most important thing, number one in the hierarchy of importance of information.

The second most important piece of information in an advert is the company name or logo, then contact information. Everything on from that is made to be less visual so that it doesn't upset the order in which things are to be read. This doesn't mean that it doesn't get read, it actually mean it's more likely to be read. For example, if one is face with a shopping list, one is unlikely to digest that information quickly, break that down into easily manageable chunks in different styles in an interesting way then it will get read. This concept of subtly manipulating the way someone views a piece of work helps get the message across in an effective manner, and it's surprisingly important in all areas of design, from print through to web.