Damn Straight i’ll Tell You How to do Your Job!

December 14, 2009 at 6:39 pm (Web Design) (, )

Well done to me…. I managed to pick the profession where everyone thinks they can do it. It’s design, so clearly everybody has an opinion. And you know what that leads to… everyone is right.

I read the blogs on a daily basis and I’ve giggled at the comics of how clients often tell web designers how to do their job. I’ve seen it, but not to such extremes as i did today. It isn’t so funny when it happens to you personally.

So, a friend and myself offered to help out a good cause by redesigning their [quite badly put together] website. Being holiday and season and all… and you always feel good when you help out. If there was some kind of scan that you could put this website through, it would receive 0.5/10 on design/layout [the 0.5 is because it would just be bad mannered to give them 0]. It breaks every rule of design, and not in a good way.

The client is of course ecstatic that we offered to do this for free and sent a nice long email about the website which they built [‘i have a good eye, lets build a website’]. And then… of course, all the things the website must have. Basically, it came down to we couldn’t change colors and layout. –Where is the design in that? A principle, which i hold dear, is I refuse to be one of the designers, that is a tool. The tool that puts other peoples ideas together.
Of course, we weren’t happy with this and sent an email with our suggestions, trying to sound positive, and very good reasons to motivate them. The opening line of the reply we received : “LOL – this is going to be interesting”.

You can just imagine how the rest of the email went.

Anyways, my point here is would you tell a doctor how to treat you? Erm… nope. Would you tell a pilot how to drive the plane? Nope. So why is it, that clients of any designer, will think that they know more.

It isn’t a case of ‘Ooo that is pretty!’ We study the complexity of typography, the psychology of colors, the art of good layout… but yet, the client will still tell us how to do our job.

*Sigh

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Eyes Wide Open

December 8, 2009 at 6:48 pm (Ramblinz) (, , )

This morning my eyes were opened wide.

I went to a children’s charity graduation/christmas party do. Normally, i’m more into animal charities, but this really got to me. My work helps the charity financially, i did some certificates, an article and i’d seen the pictures… but it isn’t enough for you to really feel it.

It’s located in a bit of a dodgy area, and well, this gives them a jump start to life they wouldn’t have had otherwise. The little girls wore their best dresses, and the little dudes wore their best shirts. There were wrapped up shoe boxes on their little tables and their eyes were shining with excitement. They sung some songs, a little dude gave an outstanding Michael Jackson performance and they received their prizes and certificates.

What struck me the most was how happy they were.

These children come from broken homes, with parents that are alcoholics or drug addicts. They have nothing. But being at this community, being around other children and learning, they looked so happy. These days, children are incredibly spoilt, they must have the latest game console, and they must have the latest brand clothing, and parents give it to them. I’m not a parent so i can’t say why, i could imagine that the reason would be because you would want to make your child happy, but does giving and giving not create expectations and therefore create not being happy due to greed?

I remember my childhood… i didn’t have the latest toys and my mum would make me wait for them. I appreciated them when i got them, and let me tell you, i was a very happy child.

Anyways, so this morning was a real eye opener. It really makes one appreciate what we have, the things that we don’t even think about on a daily basis. Are material things shaping our characters?

I definitely want to get more involved, even if its not so hands on, even if its donating food or buying clothes for the children. People hear it but they don’t realize that every little bit helps. I want to help.

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