Monday, February 14, 2011

pricing & ethical guidelines

So far in my freelance pursuits, I have worked with solely non-profits. This is partially because I enjoy pursuing work with performance groups. I feel like some guidelines within this book don't quite apply to me just yet. My design reputation is still in the works, and so I don't feel I can charge a very decent amount. In the end, all pricing is subjective and a decision between the artist and the client.

"Artists need to be clear on the various components they will work on," as stated in the handbook. I appreciate the breakdown of five possible rolls of the graphic designer within a given project: orientation, design ideas, design execution, production and on-press. (Who knew it was possible to bill for each?) Honestly, when considering a printed project, I thoroughly enjoy all aspects, including the press-check. My experience at a printing company has instilled realistic as well as high expectations for the final product.

I had never considered asking the client to sign a contract—even a casual one. The confusion of what is expected by the artist could be made explicitly clear—if, of course the tight project specifications are known by the client him or herself at the beginning. Deciphering through the haze of a cloudy project can be frustrating.

Another bit of wisdom as gleaned from this book is, educating the client about the roll of a graphic designer, is the designers job. For instance, the client may choose the safe solution out of habit. The designer's roll is to attempt to steer the client from the idea of comfort to the most powerful solution. We are problem solvers, rather than pretty (non functional) thing makers.

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