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So you think you're a designer?

It’ll only take you ten minutes.

By 3rd December 2008 No Comments

Just like most little girls as soon as The Cat could hold a crayon she didn’t stop drawing. Drawing is a great leveller – unlike a lot of disciplines, singing and drawing are things that everyone is encouraged to have a stab at from an early age. And, judging by the endless stream of tone deaf warblers that subject themselves to humiliation on shows like the X Factor, everyone thinks they can sing. Similarly, anyone with a computer suddenly becomes a whizz with the Wordart.

As a designer, I often get clients suggesting changes to work that I have done and, being an accommodating sort of gal, I try to take into account their requests. However, sometimes they just will not accept professional advice. And, because everyone can hold a pencil and rub it randomly over a piece of paper, they think they understand the design process. This is an endless source of puzzlement to me and my colleagues. Would the same clients challenge engineers; proffering scribbled alterations to a road scheme? Or maybe try and steer a lawyer’s opinion, with notes made on the back of an envelope?

Similarly, apparently everyone seems to know how much time and effort goes in to doing a piece of creative work. I regularly get asked to do something that will ‘only take you ten minutes’. I would not presume to know how long it takes anyone to execute their work but apparently, anything I do will only take ten minutes!

One morning last week, I got four separate requests to squeeze a bit of extra work into my carefully managed work schedule, each of which, I was informed, will only take me – yes, you’ve guessed – ten minutes. Then, to top it all, I had an email suggesting that to create a vector logo copied from a tiny pixellated version lifted from a website would only take me thirty seconds. I’m good, but not that good!

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