Here are the answers to some of the questions I am asked most frequently. Hopefully this will help you have a better understanding of what to expect from working with me.
How much do you charge?
The most often asked question is “how much do you charge?” or “how much does a logo design cost?” I liken these questions to asking how much does it cost to buy a house or a car? There are a ton of variables that determine the cost of the house or car, right? The same is true for virtually all design work. Before I can tell you what it’s going to cost, I need to know the specifics. The more details you can provide, the more accurate your quote will be. Ultimately, you have way more control over how much your project is going to cost than you realize.
Can you do this cheaper?
You saw something on Etsy or on another Facebook page and you really like it and you’d like to work with me and hey, maybe save some money, too? You send me a photo so I can see what you’re talking about and ask “can you do this cheaper?” While I always appreciate being thought of and remembered and love that of all the places you could go, you asked me first, the answer is almost always no. Everything I do is custom. That doesn’t mean I don’t use stock fonts, graphics and images when I can, like for a t-shirt design. I absolutely do. It saves me time which saves you money. But it is still something designed just for you, not for the masses.
Let’s say you need some save the dates. You found a super cute design online and would like for me to design something similar for less. The design you found online is for sale 24/7 on a big box store web site. That design has been sold hundreds or thousands of times. It’s a cash cow. What I design will be designed just for you and no one else. I don’t resell custom designs. When you pay for it, it belongs to you. Completely original, completely unique, completely one-of-a-kind. You’re absorbing all the expense rather than splitting it with other customers that want the same thing you just got. Make sense?
How long does it take?
While I pride myself on lightning fast turnaround, how long it will take depends mostly on you. Because my world operates on deadlines, all of the projects I juggle get prioritized based on the deadline of the project. If you need it same day, I will move mountains to accommodate your request. If you’re in no hurry, I will move mountains for someone else and circle back around to you as soon as I can. Replying to emails with feedback on the proofs I send is a factor as well. The quicker you get back to me, the quicker I can get back to your project. It’s not uncommon for small projects such as a logo or t-shirt design to be completed same day or next day.
How does this work?
Once you’ve decided that you are ready to work with me, it starts with a conversation about your project. Often times there is a need, such as a logo, but the want is unclear, how it should look. Luckily for you, I am like a 5 year old with the questions. The questions I ask sometimes don’t seem to have anything to do with the project but once you answer them, I’ll have everything I need to know what to design for you. At this point, if I’m feeling sure, and I know you’re open, I’ll get to work and you’ll see your first proof within a day or two, usually. If I’m not sure, I’ll shoot some ideas at you to see if you’re feeling any of the concepts I’ve come up with. Sometimes, there are no needed revisions. Sometimes, there are a lot of revisions. Most of the time, there’s one or two tiny tweaks and the project is complete. Once you have approved the design, I will email you an invoice that you can pay by debit, credit or bank transfer. Some clients prefer to mail a check and you can do that, too. After payment has been received, all of your files will be emailed to you. There are 3 raw, editable vector files (ai, eps and pdf) and 4 raster images; 2 jpg and 2 png with one of each being low resolution and high resolution. You will be given instructions on various uses so you’ll know what to do with them and no matter what you want to do with your design, you’ll have the necessary files.
why do you prefer to use email?
So many reasons. I have so many good reasons why email is my preference and it should be yours, too. Email helps me stay organized, all of my communication with all of my clients is in one place. It helps ensure that I do not miss anything important. Can you imagine if I had to check my text messages, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat (yes, I have been sent a limited-time only, disappearing snap asking for a design) and email? All of my personal conversations mixed in with my business conversations in multiple places? I have a headache just thinking about it. Besides keeping everything straight, it is also a huge time saver over meetings and phone calls which frees up more time for me to be at my computer getting the actual work done. Finally, with one email thread, we can easily and quickly go back and reference the timeline and instructions which is worth it’s weight in gold when it comes to larger, ongoing projects. I’m always open to a phone call or a meeting when the project warrants it or just because a new client feels more comfortable putting a face with a name but 90-95% of the time, email is the ticket.
Who owns the copyright?
While I am not a copyright attorney, I do know at least enough to do my job on the right side of the law. Copyright automatically belongs to me as the artist. I am not required to release ownership just because a client has paid me. Essentially, you have paid for my time, not my assets. However, I don’t see the point in withholding ownership from a client that has paid for it, although, that is a standard practice within the design industry. If you choose to go with another freelancer or firm, find out exactly what files and ownership rights they intend to provide you with once you have paid them for their services.
Once you have paid for the work in full, I will release all of your files to you and you have complete ownership to do with them whatever you’d like. I do ask that you not alter any of the designs I have done or allow anyone else to alter them either, just as a courtesy. I always retain the right to use your designs for advertising and promotional purposes and to build my portfolio.
Here’s an example of something I’ve witnessed a lot over the years, too many times to count…a new client wants to print some shirts or have a sign made and the only file they have of their logo is a tiny jpg they used on their business cards. That doesn’t work for much more than a business card. They need a vector file and they don’t have one. They ask the designer that created their logo only to find out they will not release it and it doesn’t belong to them. They are understandably upset, confused and caught in the middle between one designer telling them one thing and another telling them the opposite and it’s all Greek to them so they don’t know who to believe. Frustrating, right? I’m here to help you avoid that trap and avoid paying for your logo twice.