55+ Questions to ask when designing a logo

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Knowing which questions to ask when designing a logo can be difficult. You don’t want to look stupid by asking the wrong kinds of questions. You don’t want to overwhelm your client by asking too many questions. But if you don’t ask enough of the right questions, you could waste hours designing a logo that doesn’t match what your client is looking for. I’ve been there. It’s not fun. Trust me. Below, to help you start thinking through questions to

12 Sure-fire ways to be happier as a freelance designer

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I consider myself an incredibly fortunate person. Through a combination of hard work and luck, I am a freelance designer – my dream job. For all of its ups and downs, complications and stressful moments, this is a career that suits my talents and temperament supremely well. And yet – being solely in charge of my own business all the time can take its toll and threaten to deplete me of a very precious commodity which I like to call

How to turn your day-to-day struggle into a creative business you love

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If you’re anything like I was just a few years ago, you’re probably working your tush off, spinning your wheels like a hamster on steroids and feeling like it’s just not paying off. Like your bank balance doesn’t match all the sacrifices you’ve had to make, right? You increase your rates, sack some clients, get some momentum for a while… …but it just never feels like you’ve made it.  Every day still feels like a struggle. It feels like you’ve

5 Graphic design tips to shave hours off your work week

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If you work in graphic design, you’re probably only too well aware of the value of good time management. Graphic designers are required to work tight deadlines and navigate around very busy schedules to get projects completed. Shaving even a couple of minutes off design time here and there can benefit your ability to apply yourself fully to a project. What if we were to tell you that there are ways of shaving a couple of hours off your busy

Why repeatedly bending over backwards for a client can actually hurt your relationship

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Do you have that one client (okay, maybe three?!) that’s habitually totally unorganized and needing something big last week? The one that asks for an entire PowerPoint presentation for tomorrow’s 8am meeting? (Just 20 slides, I swear! 85 slides later…) Or that calls on Friday at 4:30pm to request a “quick” icon set for Monday morning’s software upgrade? I’m talking about the client that always exhibits this behavior, not the client with one rare instance when they dropped the ball.

How to skip entry-level and find your dream job right out of college

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If you are like I was as a University Junior or Senior, you’re chomping at the bit to get out of school. It’s all you can do to keep completing your assignments (especially the ones that feel like busy work). You’re ready to get out there and show the world what you’re made of. You’re ready to get your first “real” job. I’ve been there. (PS: Here at GDB we believe every freelancer should put in a little time at a

Back to the cubicle?! 6 Reasons to work in-house (at least part-time)

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A design manager recently told me that he has a hard time finding good freelancers who are willing to work in-house. This is at a very well-respected marketing communications firm in Portland, Maine – a town bursting with designers. Why is he having this problem? All jokes aside about freelance designers living in their pjs, it may be time for you to consider working in-house. Maybe you spent years in a corporate or agency setting with the goal of making

If crowdsourcing sites really cared about designers…

It’s a well-known fact: the question of using crowdsourcing sites like 99Designs.com (←link to a GDB interview with 99Designs) or Crowdspring.com is always a hot topic in the design community. When it comes to this issue, I have to admit I have always been somewhat of a fence-sitter. So I decided learn for myself what all the hype was about. Why do so many designers swear by these sites as a great way to find design clients while other designers