Let’s get started! If you haven’t already consulted with me or filled out my new client questionnaire, please do so here.
Below is information on my general policies, work flow, communication, etc.
Once you fill out my questionnaire (and/ or had a consultation) and we determine that it is a good fit for us to work together, I will send you a detailed proposal with the cost and estimated timeline, and then a contract and some homework. Generally, I can get started on a project within a week of receiving the initial upfront payment. However, if I am particularly busy I will communicate my timeline with you before we get started.
The most important things I need from you (the client):
1. A clear picture of the “problem” you’re trying to solve with this project.
2. Inspiration: Create a board on Pinterest with images that you feel resonate with the direction you want your brand to go in. Send me the link and I will add to it as needed. Also, if you can provide links to websites that you love, that is very helpful!
3. Good Communication. I will get in to my communication style below, but basically the timeline of a project (especially a website) depends heavily on communication between designer and client. I will frequently need you to send me materials, review content, and “approve” designs or ideas. So the sooner you can respond, the quicker the project will move along!
4. Content: For web design clients I will need you to provide me with photos, graphics, text, etc. as soon as possible.
My Communication Style:
Email is preferred (email@example.com). Generally on weekdays I check my email 2-3 times/day from about 9 am to 4 pm. If it is an “emergency” (like your website is down) please put URGENT in the title of your email. If I am traveling or otherwise have a big change in my level of availability while we are working together, I will try to notify you ahead of time.
In each job proposal you will receive a price with a list of “what this includes”- any additional work will likely be charged hourly (as specified in the proposal). For jobs under $1500, a 50% upfront payment is always required. For larger jobs, it may be possible to split payment into 3-4 installments. However, once work has begun the initial payment cannot be refunded. The final payment will be due when I deem the project is “finished” but before final files (hi res images or website passwords) are passed along. Most of my proposals include a period of “troubleshooting” after this payment is received. I will send you an invoice (via QuickBooks) for each installment and through the invoice you can pay via credit card (additional 2.9% + 25¢) or bank transfer. If you prefer check, paypal or venmo, just let me know and we can set that up.
Late Payments: A 5% weekly interest will be added to invoices 30 days after the invoice is sent.
Unless specified in a contract, a designer don’t have to release any working files because the designer owns the intellectual property. This is often confusing to clients, especially when talking about logos- you are buying the final design which includes the right to display or reproduce (within limits) but not to alter, change or resell without written consent of the designer. A business associate explained to me, “it’s the same concept as when you buy a Big Mac, you’re buying the burger, not the recipe; or when you hire a photographer, you’re buying the pictures, not the negatives.”
The “Fine Print”
Client Approval: Upon acceptance of the Work, Client accepts responsibility for any further processes in which this work is used (e.g. film outpost, printing, etc.) Designer is not responsible for errors occurring in this work or projects related to this work after acceptance of the Work by the Client.
Cancellation: Both parties understand that Client or Designer may terminate the service at any time if, for any reason, the relationship is deemed unsatisfactory by either party. Upon written or verbal cancellation, Client is responsible for payment for all expenses incurred and any work done towards the completion of the project based on the percentage of the project completed that is determined by Designer. Should Client cancel the project following its completion, Client is responsible for full payment as per the agreed upon estimate plus all expenses incurred. In the event of cancellation, Designer retains ownership of all copyrights and original work created.
The Pause Clause: If for some reason Client stops responding for more than 2 weeks during the project work, the “pause clause” will be enacted (unless other arrangements are made between Client & Designer). This means that the project might get ‘bumped’ so that Designer can give priority to other projects. Also any final invoices will be sent and due within 30 days to avoid additional fees. To get back on Designer’s schedule, Client must email Designer and make arrangements.