Monday, October 19, 2009

The Creative Process Needs Time, Space and Air

I have seen other web design companies advertising, "Have your new website up in 24 hours!" But even if you had 10 people working on your new website, that would be an impossible deadline to meet.

Charging for Right-Brain Work

It's true, some creative people work best in a procrastination-adrenalin mode. In fact, that's how I got through grade school :) But in the professional world, it's time to work like an adult. Creative service providers should be charging enough for their right brain thinking time -- which often times cannot be quantified the way you would, say, a bookkeeping service.

In-Person Meetings

Another vital part of the Creative Process is in-person meetings with the client... an owner is best. The client lives, breathes and eats his business. But clients usually don't present you with all the important information you need to work on the project before you start. It takes detective work, and knowing which key questions to ask to suss out the Essence of the client's company. In-person client meetings will be the most productive when the client representative is a good communicator who understands and is excited about the Creative Process.

Ideas and Brainstorming

The initial stages should abide by the rule, "there are no wrong ideas." All included parties should feel like their input is valuable, listened to, and considered. Great ideas can come from anyone: the receptionist, the owner's significant other, the mail clerk... these people are all computer users, they all know the company, and you never know where the best insight will come from. Sometimes an ok idea sparks the idea domino effect, leading the creative team to amazing and original answers.

Time... Space... Air

After putting in a few good hours designing, it is smart to let the design sit for a couple of days. During this time, the right brain is hard at work (behind the scenes) solving any design challenges, or just making it better. The solutions may come to the designer in his sleep! The BEST design has had time to evolve and usually wasn't created in the first attempt - although there are brilliant, experienced designers out there who are THAT talented... I'm just not one of them :)

To Sum It Up!

Don't try and rush the creative design process... (although deadlines are important in any working environment). Creativity requires rested, relaxed and happy brains to produce the best results.

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