How Much Does a Package Design Cost? – Why Your Package Design Should Cost a Heck of a Lot More Than $80

I didn’t make up that number. It was given to me after a potential client sought out my services. He had a line of cosmetics and was looking for some great packaging. After a quick fifteen minute discovery phone call where I got a handle on his brand, his market, his product, his differentiators and […]



Break Creative Block – How to Unleash Your Best Design Ideas

Digging Yourself Out of a Creative Black Hole and Getting Back on Track (How’s that for a mixed metaphor?) Sometimes you just freeze up. No matter how much you try you keep recycling the same failed idea over and over again as if somehow you’ll find the magical tweak that will save it. I say […]



10 Rules for Freelance Success – Business Tips for Freelance Graphic and Web Designers

Get Your Design On! The secret to a successful long-term career as a freelance graphic or web designer has little to do with design itself – it’s how you handle your business. I’m not saying that your design skills don’t matter, they do, but if you don’t get your business end together, it won’t matter […]



Why Won’t My Designer Give Me the Layered Master Photoshop Files…I Paid for Them Didn’t I?

Four Legitimate Reasons Why Your Designer May Not Want to Release a Layered Photoshop or Illustrator File…Plus One Illegitimate One. I hear this a lot. Designers don’t want to give the layered masters to their clients. Clients rightfully feel a little miffed about not getting something that they assumed they had paid for. There are […]



Why I Love Adobe Illustrator Editable PDF Files and Why I’ll Never Go Back to AI or EPS

Good-bye AI…Hello PDF For most of my career, when I started a new Illustrator project and went to save the file, I choose AI for the file type and only used EPS if there was a special request. However, now that Illustrator can save layered PDFs as editable Illustrator files I’ve made the switch to […]



The Secret to Great Client-Designer Relationships…Make Them Money!

What is Good Design? Good Design is Design that Makes Your Client Money If you ask a designer what makes a good design they’ll rattle off a list of impressive sounding terms: good contrast, effective use of type, good use of white space, logical hierarchy and so on. Ask a client and they’ll tell you […]



Ergonomic Tips and Tricks for Graphic Designers, Web Designers, Artists, and Office Workers

How I’ve Tricked Out My Work Station to Make Sure I Never Go on Disability Again I know what it’s like to wear a wrist brace for three years, to be in so much pain that I had to ice my hand after brushing my teeth, and to have my partner pay all the bills […]



Worst Postcard Design Ever – How I Got a Spammer to Design a Really Bad Postcard

Nigerian 419 Scam Turns into Comical Lesson on How to Prepare a File for Print Sometimes opportunities just fall into your lap. In this case, a spammer using a classic Nigerian 419 scam ends up providing the perfect example of how NOT to prepare a design for professional printing. The first email arrives with a […]



Plagiarism Sucks – Stolen Content and The Sad Tale of My Popular Bio

Plagiarism Shmagiarism Plagiarism is a huge problem on the web. People tend to treat anything they can access through a browser as “free”. Not free as in “I don’t have to pay to enjoy it”, but free as in “finders keepers”. The problem is kind of invisible until it happens to you. One form of […]



Resell Hell – Why I Don’t Resell Web Hosting, Printing, or Design and Programming Work by My Outsource Partners

Shhhh, It’s Our Little Secret I know I’m supposed to do it, but I just can’t. Everyone tells me to do it, and my entire industry encourages and promotes it, but it just feels wrong. Even my clients expect me to do it. But I just can’t. It makes me feel dirty and cheap. I’m […]



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