Working with Creative Talent - Paul Jacobsen

Tactical Graphic Design - Graphic Design - Illustration - Public Relations - Writing


Working with Creative Talent

What you need to know about what we do!

- Paul Jacobsen -

Tactical Graphic Design

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The 'Creative Talent' you hire, such as graphic designers, web designers, artists and writers, exist largely in a secret world … one located between their ears. In fact it's there that most of their work gets done! Unfortunately its also a world often invisible to clients, and one that requires a little 'illumination' for that reason.

People who work outside of ‘creative realms’ earn their salaries and fees for producing a certain number of items or a certain volume of activity within a given amount of time. The work they do can be quantified as such in rather tangible ways. Not so for those of us professionally involved in creative pursuits.

Much (sometimes most) of what we do is invisible to the observer because creative work begins with original, unique ideas and inspirations. A graphic designer or creative writer can be working as hard as an assembly line worker ...but while sitting perfectly still, staring out a window or at a flower pot! His or her mind's eye is very busy visualizing the end result and the process of creating that end result. In our profession the best results come from applying the old adage ... "plan your work, then work your plan".

Operating on this premise leads to the most creative and on-target results, and let's face it, our task is not just to produce 'a thing' ...its to produce something that works! Achieving this objective means spending time to visualize many things -- from the client's image to the audience's perceptions -- and all the while planning and considering the technical processes necessary to take the image from the mind to paper. This is as true for a small project as it is for larger ones. There is a rule about this that's been proven over time ..."you have 1 - 3 seconds to get a viewer's attention" ...vanilla, ordinary and 'cookie-cutter' don't do it.

A client sees the end result, perhaps just a logo that's two inches square in size, and although he or she may be very pleased with what it looks like, it can be difficult to understand how something so small could cost several hundred dollars or more!

Web designers, particularly those who are also involved in optimizing web sites, face yet another level of difficulty in this respect because (to place a client's site favorably in search engine listings) the behind-the-scenes work (the part that can't be seen in a browser) is not only 'invisible', it also takes at least a month for any tangible effect to come about!

For you, as a client purchasing creative services, its important to recognize that fast, cheap 'creative' work will give you either 'cookie-cutter' or bland results ... if that is all you want then that is fine, but be prepared to accept proportionate results. However, if you are someone who wants freshness, uniqueness and an end result that really says something about you and participates in achieving your goals, then its important to realize that good design work is very much like an iceberg ... 90% of its mass lays out of sight under the waterline.

Working with Creative Talent is ©2005 Paul Jacobsen

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Last Updated - 03/11/2009 06:25 AM

Working with Creative Talent - Paul Jacobsen