A family member owns a small shoe company. I’ve been working for him for years, doing flyers, brochures, and social media promotions. This time he wanted an 8.5x11 flyer that featured their shoes. These are the verbatim instructions I received.
Client: So, when I imagine how to depict that visually, what I see in my mind’s eye is a wide, winding path through a park. On the right side of the path is someone walking their dog or pushing a stroller. On the left, passing the walker is a young woman out for a jog. In a sun-drenched meadow behind a tall tree next to the path is a yoga class. On the other side of the path; a young couple sitting on a bench. And, off in the distance, a pick-up basketball game.
Client: That is a set-up that could have infinite variations in future, for our website or Facebook graphics. You could swap out the guy with a dog for a woman with a stroller or an older couple with a cane. You could swap out the yoga class with kids playing Frisbee or an aerobics class. You could swap the jogger for a bicycle rider. You could even swap out the whole park scene for a downtown city street. The key is everybody is wearing our shoes. You could even have a magnifying glass lens superimposed over some of the people’s feet to identify the different lines of shoes they are wearing.
On top of the fact that trying to put all of this on an 8.5x11 flyer would be simultaneously impossible and insane, he also somehow expected me to go out and photograph this scene myself. I am not a photographer nor did he have the budget for such a thing, so I would have to somehow get stock images of everything he was looking for and Photoshop his shoes on everyone so it looked natural.
To his credit:
Me: What you’re asking for is basically completely impossible, given your budget and basic visual limitations.
Client: I understand.
He may have missed his calling as a director.