Our Marketing Director, James, found a client in need of some graphic design work for a new business he was starting in auto and truck repair, and performance customization.
He needed work done without much of a budget, and I have been taking on new clients with a low introductory rate, so it worked out. I was able to feel good about not charging him the full rate, since I was learning on the job. As it turns out, much of the skills used in photo editing are applicable to, at least my style of graphic design. Needless to say, digital art from photographic images formed the core of my product.
Working with a customer and their initial vision is much different than when the physical object is before you and producing an image of that object is the goal. It is a very iterative process, and communicating effectively with the client is essential. It is much more difficult over email than it would be in person, as I found out. I have never met my client on this job.
This is the primary graphic that the client desired:
The flag began life as a photograph. The text is from fonts available on the internet, with various techniques to shape and age them. The torn metal is a complete fabrication, learned from several of the many helpful tutorials available on YouTube. This image was to be used for the front of a T-shirt, bumper stickers, business cards and other promotion items.
For the rear of the shirt, he had in mind a distressed American Flag design. My initial interpretation of his wishes was:
This has a great deal of sentiment for me because of a number of elements I included: the background is inspired by photos of the twisted wreckage of the twin towers to create the weathering of the flag, mirrored by the “tt” in the word “Battered” to symbolize the Twin Towers as they stood before the attack on September 11th. And, the crispness of the flag, in spite of the weathered treatment, to show the ideal of the country coming through such a tragedy.
However, it was obvious I had put too much of myself into that version of the product, seeing what I wanted to see, not what the client wanted. With further conversations, we worked through my perception of the project and reached his desired image for the back of his shirts. Similar, but very different:
But, since my version of the flag image was not the one chosen by my client, it is available to my other customers as a print or poster. Please contact me by email if interested as we are still working on our online store.
To take a look at our designs in use, visit the online presence of Patriot Performance and Customs, in Appleton, WI, at http://cmitchellgtp.wixsite.com/patriotperformance