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Solving design problems: uniqueness

10 April 2011

Articles, Freelancing

Solving design problems: uniqueness
Choose your language / Elige tu idioma:englishespañol

I’m redesigning my portfolio – as you surely know – and I’m finding a problem quite difficult to solve: choosing the images for my portfolio… it’s not an easy task if you have so many portfolio pieces to choose from.

The problem: as many as possible

When I started designing I used to work for small clients with tight budgets: just a logo, just a mascot, just some icons…

Several mascot designs

As my demand was increasing, the orders became bigger and bigger: brand identity + 12 poses of mascot design + full website.

I was a newbie so I thought that having 12 poses in my portfolio was better than a single one, so I just kept posting images like the one in the left.

The issue is, the more of these images I added, the more common I found myself repeating this dialog:

Client: Hey nice work, how much for a mascot design?
Designer: Thanks!, I charge 700 US$ per mascot.
Client: Great!, just within my budget, please, design 12 poses for me.
Designer: Hmm… sorry… this is the price per pose… (add here a long chat about how much time I spend on every design).

So we have a problem: what you put in your portfolio is what the client expects you to do for him. So if you put lots of stuff in your portfolio the client presumes that the production is not too time consuming, if it’s easy to produce then he obviously will want the biggest amount possible.

The solution

Every design is unique, it’s not just about cut, paste and rotate. Each pose is almost as time consuming as the original design and this is something the client should assume.

In my new portfolio the images will feature single poses. But I don’t want the client to think that I have limitations when it comes to pose the character, so:

  1. I will have cases studio, not at first glance but accessible enough for any client that needs it in order to make a sale.
  2. At the end of the page I will feature some image of a character posing in different situations.
Uniqueness in designDo you have any suggestion?

The next time we will discuss how to choose the projects that should appear in our portfolio.
I hope you enjoyed it!

This post was written by:

- who has written 96 posts on SOSFactory Blog.

My name’s Sergio Ordoñez I´m illustrator, graphic and web designer. A selection of my work is included at SOSFactory. If you want to support this blog, please be an active member: tweet the posts, participate in the discussions and the exercises :)

Contact the author

  • Adrymil

    Sólo decirte que el rediseño tiene MUY BUENA pinta!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/vcolina Vanessa Colina

    Me parece muy bien la solución que le das. Además los casos de estudio son muy interesantes, y el cliente puede ver lo que se puede hacer con su marca.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jorge-Robalino-Torres/100000161147695 Jorge Robalino Torres

    Hola. Una sugerencia no en cuanto al portafolio que me parece muy bien, pero en cuanto a la página de inicio en el content las imágenes están en un color #6E6850 y al poner el puntero muestra la imagen, por qué no ponerlas directamente?, y además en el menú de la parte de arriba la gente podría confundirse un poco no se muestra el puntero de link sería bueno que si tenga. Es mi humilde opinión y Felicitaciones tu trabajo es muy bueno. Éxitos

    • http://www.sosfactory.com/blog Sergio Ordonez

      Hola Jorge, muy interesante lo que comentas.

      Lo de las imágenes en la página de inicio es algo que he pensado mucho.
      Existen dos opciones:

      1.- Ponemos las imágenes al descubierto: ganamos en impacto visual pero perdemos en focalización. Es decir, atraemos la atención hacia un area secundaria.

      2.- Imágenes ocultas que sólo se desvelan al pasar por encima (como está ahora mismo): ganamos en sorpresa y en focalización, pero perdemos en impacto visual.

      Siendo fiel a las razones del rediseño, diría que la segunda opción es la mejor, pero para ser sinceros todavía no lo tengo nada claro. ¿Tú que opinas?

      El segundo asunto es secundario, el sistema de navegación no me termina de convencer, posiblemente lo cambie. Pero tienes razón, en el diseño final, el puntero debería marcar los enlaces.

      Saludos y gracias por la crítica!.

  • Dianita

    Rayos, tienes tanta razón, la verdad que cuando uno empieza antepone la cantidad, ¿crees que es correcto poner una personaje en una pose en lugar de 12 por ejemplo?

    Sobre escoger qué poner en el folio, comparto este link para todos:

    http://freelanceswitch.com/freelancing-essentials/how-to-decide-what-to-include-in-your-portfolio/

    Nota: ¿jod*r hiciste diseños para playboy? jaja

    Diana

    • http://www.sosfactory.com/blog Sergio Ordonez

      Dianita, todo depende del servicio que ofrezcas, si tu punto fuerte es la calidad, tienes que vender el producto como bien escaso. Piensa en la marca Ferrari, si todo el mundo pudiera permitirse uno, su valor disminuiría.

      Lo de Playboy es el sistema de avatar en el que estoy trabajando últimamente, Playboy es uno de los clientes finales, también hay alguna cadena de deportes.

      Saludos!

    • http://www.sosfactory.com/blog Sergio Ordonez

      Por cierto, gracias por el enlace, me servirá para el próximo post.

  • http://twitter.com/digideth digideth

    Any way read these comments in English without having to cut&paste them all in to a translator?

    • http://www.sosfactory.com/blog Sergio Ordonez

      Sorry, I can’t control the user’s language… it’s something we need to deal with. If you have any question just let me know and I will reply in English.

      • http://twitter.com/digideth digideth

        that cool, I was thinking maybe Disqus had a option to enable some kind of translator but I guess not.

        Seems like we should send Disqus some feedback about how they need to add a translator to there feature set.

        • http://www.sosfactory.com/blog Sergio Ordonez

          That would be a nice feature.

  • Aljalva1

    me encanta tu blog, lo que dices es razonable a la hra de dar tu portafolio o mostrarlo, tus trabajos me gustan… excelente

  • http://www.ruleoclothing.com Ladie Sevon

    I have found that you should show different poses, but let people know that they are separate prices. I dont know if that makes sense. Pick ones you really like that show variety of your work and then have a disclaimer at the bottom telling people each pose is a different project. Sometimes less is more. You are getting a lot better though, and the new design looks cleaner and more uniformed. I was like you when I first did my website, it was all hand drawn – that was the feel of it, then it when through a few revisions to what it is now (which was down 3 years ago)- I have not put up the new look yet due to lack of time. When I do I think I will show the progression of the site.

  • Andre

    Seems to me you need to have the “main” (or best) pose as a normal size image, with thumbnail links to the different poses. But don’t call them poses – maybe call them “related projects” or something similar. That way you imply that it’s not included in the price.

    Looking forward to the article on how to choose portfolio pieces. :)

  • Liese20

    Sergio you are the best designer and illustrator ever.. Congratulations!!!!

  • Ashleybs18

    I had just purchased your  design tutorial.. I had never seen your work before and though I know how to use photoshop quite well, I do not know illustrator as well. I also draw with pencil more often than anything and then scan into photoshop (I currently do not have a tablet).
    I am going to check out all of your tutorials and go through everything. I can draw and paint quite well, but definitely need to work on digital art a lot more.

    Plus it is harder to come up with a tablet here in Nicaragua..

  • http://www.lawebera.es/maquetacion-web/ maquetadores web

    Hola Sergio, claro que buena solución, el cliente va a
    querer lo que está en tu  portafolio, y la gran equivocación cuando empezamos es
    precisamente colocar todo junto. Lo otro que podrías hacer, Sergio es crear
    paquetes de 3, 5, 10 poses así a mayor cantidad le pones un descuento para que
    el cliente se interese por mas trabajo. Saludos

  • website design

    Its a good tutorial to learn.Designer must follow these steps to get uniqueness in website.thanks to sharing useful features.

  • corne

    well, i wish i could have demands like that! lately i made a page with 16 animal characters for a child magazine and they offered me 10 euro (…outlined and double pay if colored). so good to be born in the right place!

  • http://www.colorexpertsbd.com/ Jenifer Jeny

    All design are looking plenty creative and stunning, helps us a lot for making celestial unique design. Love to make always creative.