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How would you feel when other designers make changes to your work?

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  • How would you feel when other designers make changes to your work?

    Hi there, I am an intermediate level designer, and I am looking for advice on what to do when your superior (who is also a designer) is always editing your work before sending off to the client. I am not talking about giving me feedback, because I will gladly take criticism to improve my work. When I show my work to my superior they seem generally happy and may give me a few suggestions which I incorporate into the work. The next day I see that they have changed the work drastically without telling me when it seemed like they were pretty happy and I know it hasn't been presented to the client yet.

    Is this normal, and would it upset you? I am not sure how I should approach this situation.

  • #2
    This would have bothered me in my fresh out of college days. Nowadays I wouldn't care as long as they pay me the same. If it's ruined, I just won't put it in my portfolio.

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    • #3
      It may be something client have requested or demanded, Happens a lot when you work with multiple clients for short-term projects, And sometimes their demands are way dumber but you can't even argue to some of these kinds of people.

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      • #4
        When you say the work is changed drastically, is it for the better or worse in terms of serving the end client's needs?

        How do you know client feedback hasn't been involved, whether or not the artwork has been shown to the client or not? I can't tell you how many times I get a ''stop work'' order (phone call, email, text) after a file has gone to a print vendor, simply because someone in the client's chain of command hasn't signed off on something.

        You could try asking why the art was changed so completely. It doesn't help your company's bottom line if someone is spending additional time doing work over. It could be lack of communication from higher up, or any number of other reasons.
        But re-work = time and
        time = money.

        If the answer isn't satisfactory, start shopping for a new job. It's unlikely your superior will change, if that is from where the problem stems.
        Last edited by PrintDriver; 11-16-2017, 07:18 AM.

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        • #5
          Hahah, you should try writing for a newspaper. There can be a fine line between injecting enough of your own passions into your design work, and becoming too emotionally invested in it. There are few scenarios in ordinary life in which you must maintain objectivity about something that can be so personal. Some people can make the adjustments more easily than others, but the sooner you find your own way to manage that boundary, the happier you'll be as a career designer. I don't know how long you've been at this, but if you persist long enough to work through the "feelings," eventually, you land in an intellectual space where you realize the only earnest objective you need is the best possible outcome for the client, and it doesn't matter whether that hinges on your ideas, or someone else's, or a combination.
          I'd rather be killed than come to your party, but if you don't invite me, I'll kill myself.

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          • #6
            It's also possible this person feels uncomfortable with confronting you about a problem and, instead, takes the easy way out by praising the work then changing it without telling you. I've seen it happen before.

            If this is the case, how about you taking the initiative and diplomatically confronting him or her about it?

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            • #7
              Hi Arnoldhock and welcome to GDF.

              We ask all new members to read very important links here and here. These explain the rules, how the forum runs and a few inside jokes. No, you haven't done anything wrong, we ask every new member to read them. Your first few posts will be moderated, so don't panic if they don't show up immediately. Enjoy your stay.
              Shop smart. Shop S-Mart.

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              • #8
                I think B nailed it. Some people don't like the confrontation, but if you approach them and let them know that they can be more blunt with their feedback and that you're willing to listen to their feedback, etc. it may help.
                __________________________________________________
                I like to beat up pacifists, because they don't fight back ...

                N.A.N.K.A. "We Kick Because We Care."

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                • #9
                  That would make me upset. I mean it would be more appropriate and professional in the workplace to at least confront you before doing this.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by B View Post
                    It's also possible this person feels uncomfortable with confronting you about a problem and, instead, takes the easy way out by praising the work then changing it without telling you. I've seen it happen before.

                    If this is the case, how about you taking the initiative and diplomatically confronting him or her about it?

                    I agree with B ! Most of the people at my work feel uncomfortable criticizing other's people work when I feel it's the most important to get the best final result as possible!
                    When I just graduated I used to be very bothered when people made modifications to my work (probably because I was considering each project as my own baby!) but then I quickly figured out that you shouldn't be so emotionally attached to your work.

                    I think you should try to "confront" your superior, not to create tension but to try to understand what in your work could be improved. Both your company and yourself can benefit from this !

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                    • #11
                      It sucks. Part it may simply be a lack of skills on your part. If they really loved your design they wouldn't have changed it. Perhaps it's a matter of better understanding their design philosophies and what kinds of things they find attractive. But it may just be they felt inspired to put their own mark on it, maybe to gain credit/praise for it themselves. Whatever the case, it may help to get feedback from other professionals through your design process so you don't get too confident or tunnel-visioned. I know I tend to lose the ability to be objective about a deisgn until much later, but a truly honest opinion from others, not friends or colleagues, can help keep that in check.

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                      • #12
                        Hi Jyoun and welcome to GDF.

                        We ask all new members to read very important links here and here. These explain the rules, how the forum runs and a few inside jokes. No, you haven't done anything wrong, we ask every new member to read them. Your first few posts will be moderated, so don't panic if they don't show up immediately. Enjoy your stay.
                        Shop smart. Shop S-Mart.

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                        • #13
                          The major problem I'm hearing is that some designers don't treat their art like the commodity it is. Any particular graphic design isn't your first born child. It's a product meant to be sold. Once you start viewing things that way, a lot less bothers you about what other people think of it or do to it. As long as your work does what it is meant to do, sell the clients' messaging, then that is all it needs to do.

                          It does take a certain amount of time. Your mileage will vary.

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                          • #14
                            It's okay as long the person gets my permission or show me some useful tips to make better design. But I wouldn't like anyone editing my design and using for their commercial purpose.

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                            • #15
                              But your work is for a commercial purpose, if you are a graphic designer.
                              It's actually your client's work,if you think about it. The designer's purpose in life is to keep their clients in business so they keep coming back to spend more money. It's a commodity. Just like buying a car designed by someone else and adding all sorts of street mods to it. Do you think the designer of the car cares?

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