It can be tricky finding the right graphic artist/ designer for your business, add to that the subtle complexities of your situation, your unique views and structure and it’s hard enough finding the right kind of person, let alone someone with complementary skills.
So here is a quick guide to help you decide when looking out for the right person to suit your next design project
1. The kind of work displayed.
The biggest thing when looking at graphic designers, is to see what kind of work is presented in their portfolio. This isn’t necessarily going to just be what they have displayed online either so make sure to ask for examples of their work (often, designers working in certain fields will be restricted from displaying certain kinds of work/projects and that work could be the most important for your project).
2. The quality & stories behind the work.
One of the red flags here is a portfolio filled with amazing, trendy work in a particular style – a good designer cares more about the client (you) than their own style/preferences. The project that stands out in their portfolio as particularly straight forward, could actually be the most complex and most valuable project for their customer(s), so try asking about the examples that stand out to you and see what the story was behind them.
3. How is the work displayed?
Don’t just pay attention to the work on display, look at the surrounding elements – these can tell you more about the expertise of the designer than the work itself. A good portfolio should be simple and easy to follow with a good hierarchy that draws your eye across the page intentionally through their work, allowing the user to discern which is more important to them – instead of focussing on what the designer perceives as their most important work (again, the focus should be on the customer(s) not themselves.. links to their customers via the work is also a good indication of a good working relationship).
4. Have a word.
The last and final stage is always to see and speak to your designer face to face, whether in person or over video chat the aim here is to see if you ‘click’. The designer you are interested in could have the most focussed, celebrated work of all – but if you (and possibly your staff) do not get along, then the entire project will suffer and could be extremely damaging. A good rule of thumb here is to look for questions, instead of a ‘yes’. A designer should be confident but not overly so, saying yes instead of taking your question away to evaluate the possibilities could be a glaring tell of a bad time coming your way.
So be careful, take some time, look, ask questions and make sure that you get some in return and you will already be 2 steps ahead in your search for the perfect working relationship. Everyone has horror stories and each designer regrets work that they have done before, it’s a learning experience on both sides so make sure that even if things do go south, not to take it personally and remember that you can fire your designer.. and your designer can fire you if the relationship isn’t working out in a way that will deliver you the best results.