Communicating With Your Artist

communicating with your artist

Communicating With Your Artists Isn't as Hard as You Think

A lot of people struggle to communicate with an artist to get the design they want for their project. Working with someone outside of your field can sometimes be frustrating for you and the person you’re working with. You may not feel confident in knowing what to ask for, or you may not realize everything that goes into designing something. The most important thing is to be respectful and give people the benefit of the doubt. They’ll enjoy working with you more, and you’re more likely to end up with a better result. In addition to that old nugget of wisdom, making sure you are communicating with your artist and keeping an open mind are your best bets to a good final product.

Be Clear and Explicit

You may think that you don’t know what you want or need, and that you should just leave it all up to the artist because he or she is the expert. However, its important to trust your instincts. More often than not, you have a vision for your piece—you just need to communicate it clearly. When communicating with your artist, it’s important to provide as much information as you have. I once had someone ask me to make a shield design, only to find out after they had approved it that they thought a shield would automatically come with a metallic effect. You’ll save yourself and your artist a lot of frustration if you provide those little details early on in the process.

You’ll also want to let your artist know what you intend to use the design for. Colors look different online vs. in print, so it’s a good idea to figure out what your needs are ahead of time, so your artist can design for one or both of those mediums. If you need your image to be scalable, your artist will need to work with vectors and make sure any images they use are the highest quality possible. You might ask, “Why isn’t my artists automatically using the highest quality image?” If you need your image to load quickly on the web, your artist will choose a lower resolution image, or if they were originally designing something meant to be the size of a business card, they might choose something that looks nice for that size but doesn’t come in a higher resolution.

Additionally, communicating with your artist entails giving him or her a reasonable timeline. It’s a very common phenomenon that a client will demand an incredibly tight turnaround on a project, only to come back for edits without any warning months later. Design isn’t magic, and asking someone to create a logo in a day isn’t likely to result in good work. If you think you might need to make edits soon, let your artist know ahead of time so you can discuss availability. You’ll both end up frustrated if you need a fast edit and it turns out your designer is on vacation and is unreachable.

Trust Your Artist

Ultimately, the piece is yours and you have to be happy with it, but you hire an artist for their experience and years of training. If he or she tells you that your color scheme won’t be legible, you should trust them. They should also be able to tell you about current trends, or if an idea you have is a little played out already. If you are communicating with your artist well, they’ll be able to provide what you asked for, with some good alternatives. You will probably end up picking the design you wanted from the start, but keep an open mind. Your artist might come up with something that never would have occurred to you, but really suits your project.

Sometimes a company and a designer just aren’t a good fit. But if you are communicating with your artist, it should be easier to figure out if he or she has the skills you need, and can work with your vision of your project.  

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