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  1. #1
    Confirmed Halfwit
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    OK everyone... I'm on the verge (or urge, if I'm honest) of getting into the web design industry as an evening designer! (Not ready to quit my day job, yet.)

    My problem? Well... I can't do graphics.

    I mean - I really suck. For example, it took me over 4 hours to get the logo for my gimmeabuck.com site! That's pretty bad.

    I realize that with enought practise and training/tutorials I could *possibly* become good enough to do simple logo's etc on my own. However, if it takes me 4 months of time to get to that level, why not just recognize that I suck and pay someone to do it professionally?

    So... my questions, then...

    1. How many of you pro web designers actually do your *own* graphics?

    2. How long does it take for you to do them? (My thinking here is that whatever I charge would have to be worth the time, right?)

    3. If you outsource/contract your graphic design, how do/did you find someone? Do you use the same person, or group of people?

    4. If outsource, how do you get quotes for your jobs? What is a good price? How do you communicate the job to your graphic artist without getting them to talk to the client themselves?

    OK. That's it. Thanks in advance for the help. I've enjoyed reading the many posts in here and have certainly learned a lot over the past year or so. Just this one last issue that is hanging over my head. Heck, how many of *you* didn't take a year to figure out that you suck at something!

    grin.

    Henri Straforelli

    ------------------
    www.gimmeabuck.com <-- Have you given me a buck yet!?



  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Here are my answers...although I don't quite fit the status of "pro web designer"...
    1. How many of you pro web designers actually do your *own* graphics?
    I do my own graphics, all of them

    2. How long does it take for you to do them? (My thinking here is that whatever I charge would have to be worth the time, right?)
    My new site's logo took me twenty days, or about a total of twelve hours. Why? I made thirty-three different ones, and showed them to people who chose my final one (and my fav, too)

    3 & 4
    I don't outsource

    You have nothing to worry about. If I could make a good logo (like your's) in four hours I'd be celebrating in the Space Needle.



    ------------------
    Who the heck is Gen. Failure and why does he want to read my hard drive?
    Soon to come: Aspology.com

  3. #3
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    1. Buttons, solid backgrounds, text graphics I do ok on my own... Anything more complicated i.e. the Wizard I am going to use on my page I outsource. BTW The wizard was created by Sparkie who frequents these forums and runs pawsitronic.com.

    2. Long long time.

    3. I find people by searching the web. If I see something similar to what I want I will email the person asking about contract work. Usually I got to free web graphic sites and then email the artist. I also use a lot of royalty free photographs in my sites and applications.

    4. I go to different graphics sites and see what they charge first. I then charge similar amounts. I almost always work with graphic designers instead of web designers. In that way we would compliment each other's business instead of trying to steal it from each other. Besides you don't have to tell them its for a client.


    p.s. I'll outsource anything if it makes my customer happy that they get prompt service. It doesn't matter whether I know how to do it or not. Even if I have to pay 90% of what I make to an outside supplier its better than not making anything at all.

    ------------------
    Wayne Luke - Sitepoint Moderator/Internet Media Developer
    Digital Magician Studios - Making Magic with Web Applications
    wluke@digitalmagician.com

  4. #4
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    I create all my own graphics, but I don't use too many shapes or lines, mostly cool looking fonts and freeware dingbats, as well as a nice blend of colors and shadows...

    ...some logos take 30 minutes of trial and error until I come across something that looks nice, and some take a total of an hour spread out over a day or two...I'm not sure what the longest I've ever spent on a graphic/logo is...maybe an hour or two...havn't really been into graphic design for too long...but I suppose I'd have to count the time that it takes to just sit there and think about it, even if I'm away from the computer at times when I do something like that.

    So far any sites I've designed for other people I've done my own graphics work on...same as if I was creating the site for myself...I've yet to outsource graphics work alone.

    I also like to surf around different sites for inspiration...be it for layout work or graphics...

    Overall I think graphics are something that is probably wired into you. If you're lousy at em', you can become quite good, but I think the REALLY great graphics people have it built into their heads from the start.



    ------------------
    Chris Bowyer
    MyCoding.com: Under Construction!
    "I'm not an insomniac, I'm a web designer."

  5. #5
    SitePoint Enthusiast
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    5 years ago, I used to be in the same situation you guys are in. It took me quite a long time to make something that looked decent. I realized that to be successful in this industry I definitely need the graphic skills.

    So, I went back to college and studies web graphic design for 3 years. Now I am at an expert level in photoshop, flash, and studio max. If you are planning to go into the web design field, learning graphic design is very important and will pay off over time.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Guru
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    The real truth is that a good background in print design helps in the understanding of the principles of layout and the organisation of web design elements.

    You are very honest but i think at the same time that a serious person with the volume of materials we have now online and in the professional press can master the essentials of web design on his/her own.

    I took series of short courses but i can say that the the real secret is to do it properly with determination.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Graphics design isn't really all that tough.

    Think about it: with the fabulous software available today, the only tricky part (usually) is coming up with the idea for a graphic/logo in your mind...but once you have that it's just a matter of learning how to do so in a program.



    ------------------
    Chris Bowyer
    MyCoding.com: Under Construction!
    "I'm not an insomniac, I'm a web designer."

  8. #8
    SitePoint Addict
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    Yes, the MAIN problem is the mental picture. And if your the type thats constantly drawing mental pictures and are able to "save" them until you can get to your computer and begin working on it... youll be fine.
    But i have a question for Graphic Axis... I have been banging my head against photoshop and illustrator for some time now and have made great strides!!! But as for 3D graphix, Im a total chump!!! (3d Studio Max, and Bryce)
    The site that i have been TRYING to make for a very very long time now has got one MAIN wall i cant seem to pass...My logo...
    I know exactly what i want. and have had the mental picture for some time now but just cant make the darn thing!!!
    Its a very basic object, something like a torus but twisted into a different shape... Would take a pro a few minutes to make im sure.
    Well if its possible i would REALLY LOVE if i could talk with you for maybe a couple pointers as how i could bang this darn thing out... Feeling friendly? =)

  9. #9
    SitePoint Wizard westmich's Avatar
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    I think if this question were posted on a site that was specialized for graphic designers, you might see some different answers.

    Using PhotoShop, I have turned some text into simple gifs; that generally takes less then an hour. However, I have worked on some logos that I needed to increase by 600% or 800% and recolor or erase pixel by pixel. This ran into 15 to 20 hours of work.

    I have heard of professional designers quoting into the thousands of dollars to do logos.

    ------------------
    IMHO,
    Westmich
    ***********************
    Your opportunity on the web is now!
    westmichiganweb.com

    [This message has been edited by westmich (edited May 30, 2000).]


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