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carrie123

The problem with a graphic designer.

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Hey guys! I want to get some points of view from graphic designers about an experience I recently had with one. First, we accorded a budget of 400 dollars for a job that included some Flash, some design and of course, nice presentation. The deadline was around 2 weeks; I didn’t ask him for anything because I trusted him. So, when he delivers I was unhappy with some of the designs and he comes all grumpy at me, telling me what my mistakes were and that if I wanted him to fix those mistakes he would charge me with another 200, so I accepted. Then I realized that some text was wrong and I sent him the correct one and he charged me another 80 bucks just for making him so the same thing twice. Is this normal? What would you have charged me? What could I have gotten for 680 bucks from the beginning?

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For comprehensive information, go buy this, or find it at your local library.

I'll also quote the following from Bearskinrug:
Quote:
Dependent on the medium, whether the art is black-and-white or color, and the placement of the job, an Illustrator may charge with flat rates, hourly fees, or a combination of both. As is common with many other contractors in the design industry, an illustrator should be paid 50% of their estimate before starting work. This creates an air of good-faith and shared responsibility between the two parties.

...

In instances of tight turnaround, it's not uncommon for a contractor to charge extra - this is known as a rush fee. Rush Fees can be up to 25 to 50% of the original estimate.

Generally a small job that requires turnaround in less than a week is eligible for a rush fee. What's considered a small job? Well, a finished color spot-illustration would fall in that area. Keep in mind that even simple stuff requires a rough concepting stage, and it would be more efficient to get approval on a roughed-up concept than a finished watercolor.

The part in bold is the majority of where you and your illustrator messed up. Never, ever, sign off on the delivery of final work without having gone through the concepting stage and given approval. This saves the illustrator a tremendous amount of work and saves you money.

Your graphic designer is not stiffing you; s/he simply lacked the experience to save you money and save him/her time. What could you have gotten for $680 from the beginning, assuming you'd understood the concepting-approval-delivery process, and provided 50% up front? Probably a lot more, depending on the designer's rates and skill, the material being worked in (I presume it's all digital) and the dimensions of the piece.

You live, you learn. Good luck!

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I'm not personally involved with the process, but I'm pretty sure that when the company that I work for out-sources some work to a graphic designer / illustrator / animator, they always include a clause in the contract that covers a certain percentage of "rework".
That is to say, when we review the "final" work, we can send it back and get ~25% of it fixed up according to our suggestions for no extra cost (the initial payment covers this re-work).

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Graphic design process works like this: first, you sit down with the designer and explain what is expected of the final product. Designer then creates a document which lists all of the requirements established for the final product, along with a breakdown of all the components (deliverables) that the final product will be assembled from. For larger projects, each deliverable also gets several milestones with deadlines that have to be reached in time - probably not for a 2 week project.

Then you have to go over this document and make sure that all of your requirements are clearly understood. Sometimes requirements can be a little elusive, like a requirement for a "slick, smooth look", but never the less those are still valid. You and the designer both must agree that each point in this document makes sense - if designer thinks something is too vague, or unsure if something can be accomplished, it's his/her responsibility to either negotiate with you until everything looks good, or to reject the contract. If on the other hand something is not to your liking, it's your responsibility to either negotiate or find another designer. Then both you and designer agree to be bound by the contents of that document - it becomes a part of the contract. If the designer can't deliver in time or according to the terms agreed upon, it's designer's fault and you should not be charged money. If on the other hand you want the designer to do something that was not in the document - something that you decided to add or change at the last moment - designer has full authority to bill you an additional amount, and then modify the contract document to include the new change.

If you don't like the design of something that you both agreed upon, you have a right to request it to be changed as many times as necessary for it to look the way you want it to, without additional charge. This is called iterating, and should happen at least once for every deliverable in the project (you and designer should have talked about this when creating the document - decide how many iterations for each deliverable and when designer should contact you for feedback). For example, if you requested a "smooth look" and the designer agreed, that means he/she was sure of what you meant, otherwise they should not have agreed to the contract. If later you look at that deliverable as was agreed and decide you don't like it, you have every right to request another iteration and there should not be an extra charge. Deliverables can very of course, and designer could decide that if iterations are too costly, additional money will be required. But again, this would have to be agreed to by both parties before any work is done, so you know exactly when you can and cannot be charged an additional amount.

It sounds like you didn't properly kick off the contract, because you trusted the designer to be able to create something you will like. I am assuming there was no design document, no agreements to meet (at least virutally) to give feedback on deliverables and iterate on them. In that case, I would say it was your fault for not making sure the contract was clear, and not establishing any safety nets. In other words, trust is a good thing, but if you misjudge it's your fault. You are paying your money and it's your responsibility to make sure it won't be wasted.

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Quote:
Original post by ValMan
Graphic design process works like this: first, you sit down with the designer and explain what is expected of the final product. Designer then creates a document which lists all of the requirements established for the final product, along with a breakdown of all the components (deliverables) that the final product will be assembled from. For larger projects, each deliverable also gets several milestones with deadlines that have to be reached in time - probably not for a 2 week project.

Then you have to go over this document and make sure that all of your requirements are clearly understood. Sometimes requirements can be a little elusive, like a requirement for a "slick, smooth look", but never the less those are still valid. You and the designer both must agree that each point in this document makes sense - if designer thinks something is too vague, or unsure if something can be accomplished, it's his/her responsibility to either negotiate with you until everything looks good, or to reject the contract. If on the other hand something is not to your liking, it's your responsibility to either negotiate or find another designer. Then both you and designer agree to be bound by the contents of that document - it becomes a part of the contract. If the designer can't deliver in time or according to the terms agreed upon, it's designer's fault and you should not be charged money. If on the other hand you want the designer to do something that was not in the document - something that you decided to add or change at the last moment - designer has full authority to bill you an additional amount, and then modify the contract document to include the new change.

If you don't like the design of something that you both agreed upon, you have a right to request it to be changed as many times as necessary for it to look the way you want it to, without additional charge. This is called iterating, and should happen at least once for every deliverable in the project (you and designer should have talked about this when creating the document - decide how many iterations for each deliverable and when designer should contact you for feedback). For example, if you requested a "smooth look" and the designer agreed, that means he/she was sure of what you meant, otherwise they should not have agreed to the contract. If later you look at that deliverable as was agreed and decide you don't like it, you have every right to request another iteration and there should not be an extra charge. Deliverables can very of course, and designer could decide that if iterations are too costly, additional money will be required. But again, this would have to be agreed to by both parties before any work is done, so you know exactly when you can and cannot be charged an additional amount.

It sounds like you didn't properly kick off the contract, because you trusted the designer to be able to create something you will like. I am assuming there was no design document, no agreements to meet (at least virutally) to give feedback on deliverables and iterate on them. In that case, I would say it was your fault for not making sure the contract was clear, and not establishing any safety nets. In other words, trust is a good thing, but if you misjudge it's your fault. You are paying your money and it's your responsibility to make sure it won't be wasted.


thank you for your kindly explaination about the contract,i benifit much,and i'll improve my work in future,thank you very much!

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