You may be surprised to find that there are several non-design steps in my process before I actually put pencil to paper or open up an Adobe program (to actually start designing). This is because I am more than just an Illustrator vector wizard, or InDesign layout ninja, or Photoshop Fairy Godmother—first and foremost, I am a problem solver.
Hopefully the outline of my design process below will help you visualize what it’s like to work with me. Of course, there will be more specificity for each particular project, but that will be determined on a case by case basis. Just know that I like having some structure to keep things on track and chugging along, but I don’t like to overplan every little detail in advance because I like leaving room for exploring ideas.
Enough exposition, let’s dive in:
Get clear on business goals and vision. How will this project play into your big picture?
Determine where the design solution will be implemented to ensure we design in context with the end user in mind— basically where is this design going to live, what canvas are we working with, and who is going to be using or experiencing it.
Explore and save visual inspiration using Pinterest. Experiment with how these design elements could be used to facilitate the end goal. Create a moodboard to capture the look and feel that we are trying to achieve through colors, textures, patterns, illustrations, lettering, fonts, photography, lighting, etc.
I will conduct a competitive audit to ensure we design your branding or packaging within the context of your marketplace and competition.
Now we'll do a quick moodboard revision to make sure it reflects any changes we want to make based on the competitive audit. This will act as our visual mission statement that we can reference throughout the project.
With our aesthetic nailed down, it's time to research and choose your printing vendors. In order to make sure that your branding, packaging, and other design assets are not only scalable but optimized for different formats, we will need to design them within the context of what can be manufactured.
Now we finally put pencil to paper! Low-fi, rapid prototyping sketch ideation is where we’ll brain dump rough concepts and really get the creative juices flowing so we have lots of ideas to play with. Before we move onto digital mockups, we’ll have to narrow it down to our top 3 ideas.
Finally we’ll bring out the big guns—Illustrator, Photoshop, and prototyping tools. The design is still a draft, but that's ok because the primary objective is solidifying the layout and concept art. Then we'll narrow the top 3 ideas, to the lead idea.
With the winning concept chosen, we're ready to polish and refine colors, wording, textures, layers, and add the finishing touches. Two rounds of revisions are included, but if need be you can request more for an additional fee.
Once you have signed off on your proof, all the remains is the final export and implementation. Handoff will include sharing a Google Drive folder of your deliverables + a walkthrough of how to use your assets. And then...pop the bubbly!
Having a comprehensive project management system in place keeps everything organized so we spend our energy being creative, not chasing emails and file attachments and text messages. These are the tools I use in my workflow to ensure that the project stays on track and is completed on time.
I will provide an orientation on how to use these tools once we begin, but it’s not a bad idea to familiarize yourself with them before we start working together.
Think of Asana as a roadmap with accountability--it outlines the tasks at hand and allows us to keep deadlines in our sightlines.
It also has the ability to leave comments on a specific task. Not only does this keep our conversation focused, but it also streamlines our collaboration so we don’t waste hours sifting through a series of emails with too broad of an agenda.
Before I open up Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop, I need to have clarity on your style and aesthetic preferences. Sure, an adjective is an important descriptor, but sometimes the same word has different meanings to different people. This is where Pinterest comes in and allows you to search for visual inspiration, save it, and then share it with me so we can be on the same page.
I think we can all agree that sending project files as an email attachment is the worst. Instead, I like to upload all my files to Google Drive and the collaboration within the document using the comments feature. Then, for easy reference, I just link it to the relevant Asana task.
Tell me a little about your project and I'll get back to you in 1-2 business days.Work with me
Tuesday - Friday 10am - 4pm
Meetings by appointment only.
Based in Oakley, California.
Before we get down to business, let's have a quick chat so I can meet you, make sure I'm the right person to help you, then discuss next steps. Let's make it happen!