When I started college, one of my main questions I often posed to my professors was, “Where can I find inspiration? Where does creativity stem from?” Throughout my college years, my graphic design professor, Eric Wold, taught me that creativity doesn’t come from nowhere; rather, a process behind creativity exists. I am grateful to have learned the importance of the design process, and I still practice the same method each time I begin a new project.
Every time I am presented with a project, an initial idea comes to mind as to what the end result might look like. However, rarely is my preliminary idea anything close to the final product. To get out of my own head, I do extensive photo research beginning with imagery related to the project at hand, such as business card design, before vastly broadening my search to find color scheme inspiration, typographic inspiration, etc. I may draw color scheme inspiration from exotic rainforest imagery. Layout inspiration may be derived from interior design photos. Pattern inspiration may come in the form of Mexican tile imagery, from which I will pull basic elements to create my own designs. I compile these images categorically into contact sheets and print them so I am able to see them all at once. Juxtaposing this found imagery produces unique design inspiration.
After I compile my photo research, I begin sketching the ideas that come to mind. I generate several thumbnails of different ideas, especially if I am working on a logo design, and then select my favorites once I exhaust my thoughts or feel that I have produced enough usable concepts.
I select the strongest concepts from my sketches to digitally render in a design program. I usually create a rough draft of three to five concepts, depending on the complexity of a project, as well as the budget. Rest assured, the design I develop for you has been well thought out, and many options have been considered in an effort to produce the best possible work.
Refining the Work
At this point, I generally show the client one to three design proofs to gage their preferences. After the client decides which direction they want the project to take, I refine the chosen concept to meet their standards.
After revisions are made and clients are satisfied with the final product, I provide them with the final file or prints. At this point, I reflect on the design process, thinking back to my initial idea and comparing it to the final result, whether the design turned out as I thought it would or took a completely unexpected, yet powerful, turn for the best.
Faith is the proud owner of Design by Faith, a freelance design business specializing in wedding stationery, invitation design, logo design, and all forms of print design. Time away from her computer is spent running, bicycling, frequenting concerts, swimming, gardening and doing other outdoor activities. To learn more, visit the About page!