I have been intrigued and had developed fascination in graphic design ever since I started freelancing doing mostly coding jobs. The design was something I knew could make or break your startup or company. I realized that no matter how good and functional your online website is, without solid design work on your branding you would just struggle to make a mark and earn a name for yourself.
With these learning, I knew I have to get better at design not only because of my fascination and appreciation of general aesthetics of beautiful things but because I knew that my code could look beautiful only if I knew how to dress it up beautifully with elegant designs. Hence I had been pursuing design and learning Adobe Creative suite to make myself better at it.
But there had been no opportunity yet to do a professional design project until I joined a group on Facebook called Graphic Designer’s Tips Lounge administered by three industry experts Stephen Loony, Shawn Berry, and Roberto Blake. It is in this group that I befriended a lady with the name Katie Ratcliffe who is a designer and illustrator herself and was in transition from her full-time job to starting a business of her own. She is trying to start a design company of her own that would be targeting small business to help them with branding and identity design. But it turns out that she does not have time to do a branding and design for her own business as she has to run out meeting and presenting to prospective clients and business.
She wanted a professional logo done. Hence she reaches out to me with a brief which reads as follows:
I knew that this was my opportunity to get myself a start at professional design work. So I was in for it. It was not clarified and agreed initially that this would be a paid gig and I didn’t bother about it either. I left it for her to decide if she liked my work and would like to pay for it.
I researched different styles, shapes, fonts and finally came up with following design:
I showed this design to her and she liked it instantly but there was something in her head that would still refrain her to go ahead with this concept. She thought that she wanted something that had an icon representing it.
I sat back with my design program Adobe illustrator and drew some shapes and tried fitting in but nothing seemed to be making sense instead they were kind of muddying the simplicity of it. Then I took up a bold step and decided to throw up this design for critique from the design professionals in Graphic Designer’s Tips Lounge group on Facebook. I just wanted to know how I could improve it and was there something that didn’t work. Turns out that all the critique and feedback that came in were positive and there were a good amount of appreciation that this design got. Here is the post on Facebook.
Now, next thing I did is tagged Katie in the comments on this post. The next morning I got a message from her on Facebook which reads like follows:
“Sunil – you make me laugh – I need to hire you for sales! How much is that logo going to cost me? haha, got your email and will respond in a couple hours. by the way: Good Morning! sometimes I don’t know what’s good for me, so I’m glad to see you stick up for your work – that’s important (especially when you’re right)!”
Wow, what best could I have expected to hear about my first design gig. Its things like this that continue to inspire creatives like me to continue to do what we love to do.
Hope you had a great time reading my experience. I Shall continue to post future experiences as well as and when I encounter something interesting.
Have fun designing or doing whatever you do good 🙂