Clients: love or hate them

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Southerner, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    The deep south of England
    #1
    I was working on a brief which required designing a Christmas charity bash dinner menu, for a 4 star hotel up the road from me, I had a free rein of the overall design which the menu needed a revamp from last year's tired looking version.

    Because the hotel being a upmarket 4 star type, I made the design elegant and classic looking going for a Christmas theme using wintry colours like gold with burgundy plus the only one serif font type to minimise cluttering the whole look of the menu.

    When I presented the proof to the client (or I thought he was) and he loved the look of it then took it away telling me he will get back to me later on for how many copies etc.

    That was a fortnight ago, I contacted them a few times to try chasing them up but to be told they'll get back to me in time. Today this same guy returned, with a sheepish look on his face, which he told me his boss would rather to go with the other design rather than mine then I was handed with the guy's boss's preferred choice.

    My god, I was horrified. The alternative design looked like something out of Publisher slapped with tacky clip art plus Comic Sans font everywhere which a designer's services, like myself, won't be necessary!

    The embarrassed looking guy said his boss insisted on this awful design instead of mine and I thought to myself "WTF?! It's a 4 star hotel not a youth hostel!"

    Being a professional, I did not say a word or kick up a fuss I just went to print off hundreds of copies of this mess of a menu. Though I wasted my time focusing on this brief however I was fully paid for my troubles even though they went with their own design in the end!

    Some people don't know the meaning of design when it hits them on the head and have no taste at all.
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #2
    The client is always right. Unfortunately.

    Some projects I've really looked forward to doing, thinking they could be portfolio pieces, have been 'sabotaged' by clients, and even worse, clients' colleagues, friends, mothers etc. Design by committee.

    Saying that, it's an essential skill of a designer to sell your work and to explain why you've done this or that as a solution. There's always another job around the corner to sink your teeth into.
     
  3. macrumors 68020

    Stampyhead

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
    #3
    The boss's kid probably did the other one...
     
  4. Guest

    shecky

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Obviously you're not a golfer.
    #4
    i believe the saying goes

    "this job would be great if it wasn't for all the f***ing clients."
     
  5. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    #5
    I would have said something although in a polite way. Maybe even asked to see the person in charge and let them know my reasons for my design and why it's better than the other. Sometimes it's the designers job to make the clients see that their design is rubbish :D

    I'd have made sure I was paid first though.
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Abraxsis

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #6
    Well, I agree that the customer is always right, and I do know the "pissyness" one feels when a customer thrashes/changes your design. But this is how I look at it ...

    I'm not a restauranteur, nor are you, the boss must have some clue as to what he is doing in that business to have received 4 stars. Perhaps he thought his high brow customers might get a laugh from the kitschy menus around the Holidays? Or perhaps it is just as simple as the man's son/daughter made one up. Or perhaps the man just has no taste. As long as your name isn't anywhere on it, and you got paid just chalk it up to yet another experience in life. Im sure it won't be your last.

    If nothing else change the name and food names/prices on the menu and use it in your portfolio.
     
  7. macrumors 601

    Tilpots

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    Carolina Beach, NC
    #7
    Their dime. If they wanna screw their business, that's their decision. But yes, I hate it and them usually.
     
  8. macrumors 65816

    ChicoWeb

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2004
    Location:
    California
    #8
    At least you got paid.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    bluetooth

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto
    #9
    I think we've all been there...and as the others said, take it in stride and just move on to the next.

    It is good to be able to explain your thought and design process but I don't necessarily agree with persisting or pushing your work if the client chooses an alternate design. Designers need to have thick skin - just my opinion personally.

    Some people just have plain ol' bad taste and if your name is not on it, and you were paid for you time, then that is all that really matters in the end. Clients such as these are few and far between in most instances. Just don't take these experiences personally, no matter how deflated your ego may feel at the time. :p
     
  10. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    The deep south of England
    #10
    Cheers guys for your comments!

    I know I should take this in my stride and look forward to the next project coming up but situations like this can get a bit annoying though.

    This client shouldn't thought of using my services if he could do what he wanted himself however he wasted his money by paying me for all that time for a design he didn't want! Silly fool.

    The guy who I was dealing with, the one got embarrassed by his boss's decision, just contacted me not long ago to apologise also told me his boss actually created the alternative design himself using MS Word!

    Of course customers are always right no matter how wrong some are! ;)
     
  11. Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #11

    Oh, excellent. :D


    [​IMG]
     
  12. macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #12
    And 90% of the time a complete retard when it comes to anything to do with design.....
     
  13. macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #13
    That is SOOOOOO like what happened to me with the company I work for logo redesign... scarily similar

    (looks around for hidden cameras)
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    faustfire

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    California
    #14
    Not long ago I had the CFO of the company I work for (for only 2 more days, hooray!!!) giving me kerning advice on a logo design. Ridiculous!
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    #15
    I think have just lost a client, he was a good client paid up etc, etc. But he always wanted the look and feel of the design his way...okay he's paying for it, I suppose he knows what he kind of visualises in his head..
    Until the other week, re-vamp of his letterhead, did it sent it across to him and he explained he wanted the layout, typeface as well to be like the one he had knocked up on his PC. I emailed back giving a good explanation on not using such a condensed font at the bottom of the page (trust me it was ugly). He mailed me back and told me 'if you cant do it then dont bother'.
    Why get me doing any design/layout in the first place?
    If I choose to take my car to the garage to have it fixed, halfway through do I grab the mechanic and start telling him to glue spark plugs to the steering wheel....:confused:
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    AlexisV

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #16
    We've had some horrendous problems recently:

    - the client who won't pay because he thinks we owe him a favour after he fixed a problem with our phone network 4 years ago.

    - the client who can't work her email, causing delays, which she blamed on us when her superiors bollo*cked her for not having the job ready. Therefore her 'superiors' appoint another agency and don't think they have to pay us.

    - the client who sacked the sales manager we were dealing with and are now denying any agreement of them appointing us. Ignore our submitted terms and conditions and say the work 'was at our own risk''. Luckliy the dismissed guy is still in contact with us and trying to help.

    And from a design point of view:

    - the client who gives us a layout which will blatently look horrible and gives us tiny 72dpi images to work with. Baring in mind this was on a 10metre banner and he expected drivers to read an essay as they were driving past.
    There's nothing worse than designing something you know won't work just so you can demonstrate how bad it looks to the client.
     
  17. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    afk
    #17
    Your client is just looking for a Yes-man, someone to execute his plan without thinking, probably, he will do better with a robot....
     
  18. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    #18
    Hey AlexisV, must be something in the water then, because Im about 35miles south of you....:eek:
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    bluetooth

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto
    #19
    priceless :D
     
  20. macrumors 68040

    koobcamuk

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2006
    #20
    If things are this bad for a menu... imagine being an architect!
     
  21. macrumors 65816

    Cloudane

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2007
    Location:
    Sweet Apple Acres
    #21
    I've just been ranting about that sort of thing today!

    Managing Director thinks the images would look better "like this".

    Marketing dept: "WTF?"
    Web design (me): "WTF?"
    MD: "No discussion. Do it."

    The boss is the boss. *shrug* it does get annoying when people who have no idea about a particular subject try to tell the experts how to do their job though! Especially when they dictate, rather than consult.
     
  22. macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #22
    And this was going to be a company logo (sorry if this offends anyone).....

    [​IMG]
     
  23. macrumors regular

    B&Wtoon

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    Sep 29, 2006
  24. macrumors 6502a

    bluetooth

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto
    #24
  25. macrumors 6502a

    bluetooth

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto
    #25
    nice one - reminds me more of KISS actually. :cool:
     

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