The Complete Graphic Designer
Client Considerations
Clients depend on the designer to help solve their
marketing and communication problems and send
effective visual messages; designers depend on paying
clients to make a living, pay expenses, and fulfi ll their
desire to create. The relationship between the two
should be one of mutual respect, common goals, and
the ability to learn from one another. Realistic expec-
tations in terms of cost and deliverables need to be
established up front in any designer/client relationship.
While working for a paying client, the designer is
typically not given free reign or complete creative
control to develop an artistic masterpiece. Sometimes
aesthetic compromises on the designer’s part must
be made to fulfi ll a communicative function. One way
to exercise full creative control is to work with “not
This brochure for Virgin Airlines uses
a chipboard book with a die-cut
window to send an effective and clear
message to potential customers. The
use of extremely simple symbols and
phrases ensures the audience will
take the moment to fl ip through it and
connect with the brand. By focusing
on alleviating the common stresses
passengers experience and empha-
sizing their attention to taking care of
the details, Virgin is able to speak to
customers’ most common needs.
Design: Turner Duckworth
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Common Design Jobs
for profi t” or “pro bono” clients such as the ballet,
symphony, food kitchens, and shelters. They usually
have very little or no marketing or advertising budget,
yet require effective design to raise money for their
causes. In these instances, the designer contributes
time and talent at a reduced rate or free of charge (pro
bono) to design pieces that promote the organization
or its services.
Design for not-for-profi ts is a noble cause that should
be approached cautiously. While many of these clients
offer “creative freedom” as a perk, there is often a
committee that must sign off and approve the work,
each member of which has his own agenda and opin-
ion. Additionally, once committed to working with a
nonprofi t client, the designer is often repeatedly asked
to donate his or her services to the cause. Because of
these issues, it is sometimes more benefi cial for the
graphic designer to relinquish some creative freedom
and receive full compensation for his services.
This ad for Pick Up uses a large
illustration combined with product
photography in the background to
effectively showcase the company’s
selection of bar stools and chairs.
Design: Shira Shechter Studio
This poster for the Penrod Arts Fair
uses intricate typography, layered
imagery, and brush strokes sugges-
tive of a painted canvas. An artist
palette is inferred through the use
of negative shapes, and the circular
pattern of color swatches complet-
ing the “O makes its messaging
immediate and effective.
Design: Lodge Design
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