The line that divides a professional graphic designer who has studied for 4 years in a prestige university, have learnt not only about design principles and color but also about structure, semantics, geometry, art history, art appreciation, literature, math and philosophy, that has produced a final thesis to graduate and one who goes to a school for 2 years or less to learn only the digital basis of graphic design is very, very wide sadly.
Talent is needed and most certainly both will be talented prospects, but the fact of enriching the talent through a broad spectrum of studies will make, at the long run, a BIG difference.
Take the following example (and sadly I have come across many of these along my professional career!) were an inexperienced and under-trained designer takes on the task of creating a logotype for a company.
You may or may not like the final design that we produced, but the creative process that was involved, the rigorous design process followed to develop this design is reflected not only on the logotype itself, but also in the client handling and final design presentation.
This is a company that has existed for a while already. They do real estate and have already a big client base, but they wanted to cater a different kind of clients: they want to step up their game and take more wealthy clientele. They are aiming for top properties and wanted to change their whole image to showcase their services.
By the time we were hired they already had “purchased” three “logos” from three different “designers”, being the newest one better than the one before… and this was the one they were currently using:
Anyway! The list of requirements were the following: keep color scheme, change the name a bit (from Roma Inmuebles to Roma Estrategia Inmobiliaria), keep it professional, classy and more abstract.
We initiated the design process in the classic way, by sketching on a notebook and on a very handy iPad app and then we chose 6 designs from there to clean up and refine.
From those initial designs our client end up choosing two, but we focused on the one we though would have more impact, would be more original and would adapt better to different applications.
After the final design was approved by the client we proceeded to prepare the whole stationery package, having in mind the appropriate printing technique to achieve the high-end look the client wanted.
We did a simple yet elegant design and suggested linen paper and traditional direct-ink offset process for printing, except for the Presentation Folder, which can only be produced, because of price, as a full color offset. And we added, for the first time, complimentary UIs to uniform the whole company.
The whole process was monitored by our client through a webpage setup specifically for them: http://creative618.com/roma-inmuebles
Finally, we produced a Branding Manual in iBook format for reference and distribution, as well as the whole printing files package for reproduction.
One can always look back and thank those endless study days with subjects that had no meaning apparently, and see, after more than 20 years of practice, what all the “extra” knowledge gives; just a better understanding of the design, its needs and process, and a better appreciation for the results.