The 55 secret Rules in Design and Advertising: Personal Matter

It is always easy to neglect these things, especially as a creative. Sometimes, you are in a state of flux, you are being overly productive and in the middle of it, and you do not want to stop. Taking a break in order to eat, drink and sleep is hard. Gee, even standing up to go for a pee is. But it is necessary – not only to keep her runnin, but to maintain the level of quality. So if you feel tired, sleep, for heaven’s sake! Wake up in the morning and you’ll be thankful that you listened to me.

4. Time is a rare commodity. Spend it wisely

Let’s be honest, friends: being on time isn’t exactly one of our most renowned values. We might be excellent designers, but sometimes, we could just be not so late. Can you refer to this?

Well, many creatives I know can. Its because of the nature of our business. Read rule #1 of Workflow: You laugh at nine to five. So it is necessary to undertake certain steps to ensure our punctuality and credibility.

  • Don’t take on more than you can manage. When you start off in the design field, you’ll probably take every job you can. You’re in your early years and besides needing the money, you’ll want to gain experience – and referrers, because you know that your happy clients are the best source for new jobs. And this is my point exactly: Happy clients generate new clients. You won’t do your client a favor by delivering crappy and unsolid work due to a lack of time – nor will you do yourself a favor.
  • do not wait for the last moment to start work. Even if you think that you are able to do a job standing on your head, you should start working on it early. The longer you are in the business, the more you learn that a project’s true extent is being disclosed in the process. So do not make the mistake of underestimating your workload. This directly reflects on our next tip for time management

The 55 secret Rules in Design and Advertising: Workflow 3

You might be familiar with accidents turning out to be a major benefit of your design. If you know this, why not extend your options? In the realm of creative freedom, you can stumble over most interesting approaches by simply playing around. Sure you know your stuff, but you can do so much better.

Experiment! Color Dodge instead of Color Burn! Make the dashed line 1 mm instead of 1 px! Make that gradient radial! Use another brush! Add a third layer mask! Make it different! Play around! You may come to interesting results by simply using what you left behind as you grew older: your play instinct.

4. If you are not a perfectionist, you are not a designer

Tell me: in Photoshop and Illustrator, how much time do you spend at 6400% magnification? How often do you hit Ctrl+Z because you think a line is placed half a millimeter too low? How extensive is your changelog for an average composition?

Because we know that even the most minor change of an element’s attribute can make the difference between Hillary and Britney, we blatantly take the word perfectionist as a compliment.

It comes with the job and a certain amount of self-respect. You have no other choice than to identify yourself with your work – because on the reverse side, your work will always identify with you, that is why you should always, always, always quintuple check your design before calling it a final. Then again, we have one rule left:

5. There is no such thing as the final version

This, our final rule of workflow in design and advertising, is a vital one. With possibilities given and creative juices flowing, you will usually have a hard time deciding that this is it. Instead, you go on and on, changing this, tweaking that, adding and deleting, sharpening and softening, enhancing and simplifying. And again, it is in the nature of our profession. Because there is not a single way to do it, but at least a couple, if not a thousand possible avenues, we have to possess the integrity and self-confidence to set an end to a design.

The 55 secret Rules in Design and Advertising: Workflow 2

  • You perform to be the chosen one. When you have a new job in prospect, your creative juices usually start flowing immediately. Even before you accept the assignment, your mind is busy inventing ideas and approaching avenues. If you are a professional, you know this very well, because you never take a job blindfolded.
  • You fall in love. If you had this glorious first idea, it is so huge that you get all excited over it. You start building up an emotional attachment to the idea. You begin craving it and you end up loving it to death – after all, it is a part of you, and before it, there was nothing.
  • You exchange engagement rings. You simply love your (initial) idea so much that you can’t even think of another approach. that is because when you love something so much, you can’t think of anything better than that, right? So right now, your emotions are blurring your objectivity. To open up for other possibilities though, you have to free yourself from this emotional bond. Take a step back and forget about the idea. It will not run away, you have put it on paper already. Free your mind and go back to square zero.
  • You wake up. Finally, after having detached yourself from your first love, you are able to come up with new ideas. Your mind is free and now capable of exploring your creativity to its fullest potential. This results in a bunch of ideas, including your first love, spread out on your desk. Now you only have to choose the best one. Sometimes, your CD or the client will want to do this for you. Sometimes, you will find that you had far better ideas after you let go of the first one. And sometimes, you will find that after all, your first idea is still the best. Sometimes.

3. A mistake can lead to very interesting results

The endless possibilities Photoshop and Illustrator offer are truly astonishing. When you are a noobie, they can be overwhelming. But wait, do not give up yet! There is a very good reason to let your mouse and pen have its own mind.