As a graphic designer with Adcorp, my days vary depending on what I’m working on. This is largely due to the stage we are at with any particular project; pitching a creative concept, developing a realised idea or presenting preliminary concepts which will be further developed. The nature of the projects can vary a lot as well based on what a client is trying to achieve and what sector they operate in.
While collateral may at times be the same (print ads, digital ads or websites prove to be recurring deliverables) the variety of brands and their goals provides creative challenges within my daily work As a designer you have to really grow and develop as visual media does, so working on such varied projects gives you the space to be progressive and to try and produce something that is not only visually striking, but serving the end goal for the client.
How that process works for me usually follows a set structure that I apply for any type of deliverable.
1. Gauging what is wanted from the brief, the client and effectively their audience
This is not only trying to gauge how they want the design to look, but also what they want it to communicate to their chosen audience. We have a range of ways to achieve a successful result for a project. Our account managers have conversations with the clients to collate as much information as possible before communicating with us, the designers, as to what we need to achieve. Establishing what is needed visually is often a furthering of this process for some projects- namely larger ones such as website designs- which can mean pitching moodboards or best of breed examples.
We also study brand guidelines to make sure the visuals and stylisation we are proposing is in-line with a client’s established branding.
Some projects are smaller than others and demand fewer steps to inspire the solution, or sometimes we have previously created collateral that is a basis for what is wanted from the client, but more often than not we get to engage in the challenge of presenting something new. This is my favourite part of my job, being able to so often pitch and consequently create some really striking and strongly communicated visuals.
2. Designing for different deliverables and platforms
Aside from designing for different brands, my day to day routine often requires designing a multitude of solutions for one project. Web banners, print ads, branding, websites, magazines, flyers, posters, bus ads, microsites and templates are just some of the solutions we get to see our creative designed for and translated to. I get to utilise a set of skills such as type design, photo editing, magazine design, web design, illustration, product design and document layout; so to see these skills utilised in a successful design across lots of varied platforms is an incredibly rewarding part of my job.
3. Developing solutions
After establishing what is needed from the design (visuals, colours, themes, messaging etc.), we progress to developing a solution. This is a process that can require as little as minor tweaks and changes to copy of a set design, to anything as great as providing several completely different visual options that are on theme with what is wanted for a successful solution. This process has me communicating with account managers, researching successful solutions, and often getting to experiment with different tones, imagery and layouts to get an optimum result. There is a lot of impact that differences in font, style, colour treatment and layout have on a design. Sometimes in order to remove ambiguity from a creative solution and achieve a clear and efficient result, several options are required to pinpoint the strongest form of communicating a particular message.
4. Achieving and finalising a successful result
There is often discussion as how to improve a design, or what minor tweaks to make to achieve a perfect result, so there is often a dialogue about what limitations are faced, what follows brand guidelines, and what is consistent with the messaging and end goal of a project. There are minor amendments as well, but at this stage of a project, most of the design is fully realised and these tweaks are usually given from the client or the account manager to ensure the end result is at its absolute best.
I’m always sure to go over my own work and utilise the feedback given to achieving the best results.
So getting it to a sign off stage is very rewarding knowing we’re providing the best results for our clients and their brands.
Ultimately, I am proud to see work I helped bring to life supporting and communicating strongly for a range of successful brands within New Zealand as part of the work the team and I produce every day here at Adcorp.