The 55 secret Rules in Design and Advertising: Workflow 4

Iffyness can stem from a lack of self confidence. If you are not sure which version is to be the final one, try one of these approaches:

  • Set up a contest and let your tummy be the judge. If you have got more than two possible finalists, put them in direct competition to each other. If you are working on a print job, print out all versions. Stack them up, turn them around (so you see the blank backside of the sheets) and randomly pick two. Place these next to each other – now act on impulse: pick the one your stomach likes best. Put the winner aside and pick the next two, eliminating half of the stack like that. After round one, repeat until you have only one final left.
  • Compare your possible finals with the earliest version. Another possibility is comparing each of your potentials with your earliest comp, or outline. By doing that, you can see the benefits and disadvantages more clearly.
  • Add context. If you are doing a print ad, open up the magazine or newspaper in question. If you have done that already at an earlier stage (which I recommend in any case), do it again. Play around by placing print-outs of your different comps in the magazine. Which one looks best in their natural surrounding?
  • Outline possible follow-up variations. Assume this is to be the start of a series. Which version is most flexible while emphasizing the CI?
  • Ask for an outsider’s opinion. For that, you have three possibilities:
    • Your friends and family. People not in the business. They can point out flaws and open your eyes for things you haven’t considered. They give you a glimpse at the real world’s perception of a comp, even if it seems worthless: I like blue better than cyan because blue is my favorite color can be valuable information.
    • Fellow designers. If they are not your enemies, they can give you a professional opinion and lead you the right way.
    • A design related community. Various websites form a community where creatives can post their comps and get feedback from other community members.

Here we go!

These are the 5 Rules of Workflow and Getting it Done I consider vital for creatives. They are not intended to be ultimate rules – rather guides that have proved to be useful and work for us. Maybe they can help you come to better results with your work – being in the creative business myself, I wanted to share them with you. Can you relate to these guidelines? Also, possibly you have a rule of your own I haven’t mentioned? Share your thoughts!