I work in FMCG/packaging/branding. A client came to me to launch a new line of products.
They signed off on design development and I was working on designing the packages for the whole series when he came to me with “an idea”:
Client: My friend is an illustrator, and she has some ideas for how to improve your work. I think they’d really make the packages “pop.”
The client sent me their friend’s Instagram profile, and some images with fabric textures, watercolor textures, and a few illustrations.
Me: OK. We can go back if you like but we’ll have to go through the development stage again. That means you will have to pay for a new set of designs.
Client: But, we LOVE the layout as it is. Can’t you just swap in what she’s done to make it better? Then we don’t have to pay for more design work.
Me: I can’t, because design doesn’t work that way. Not all fonts work with illustrations. We actually have to try a range of fonts to see what compliments it the most.
Client: No. Just change it. I know it will look great.
I make the changes.
Client: The brand name doesn’t pop the way it did in the other design with the same layout. You’ve obviously changed something in the illustration. It looks awful.
Me: All I did was swap the illustrations. Here, have a look.
I send a before and after comparative PDF.
Client: Hmm. It doesn’t look right. Change the fonts so it looks better! Fix that illustration. We’ll pay you for these changes.
I make the change.
Me: Here it is. I’ve redesigned the illustration so it looks tied together. It took me three days but I’m happy with how it turned out.
Client: I don’t like the font. It’s too heavy. I like the font from the previous round of designs.
Me: Right, but it really doesn’t work with the new illustrations. We need something bold to really bring out the brand.
Client: No! Change it back.
I revert to the original font. It looks like a congealed mess.
Me: Is this what you want?
Client: Not really, no. Tell you what, I had a crack at this in GIMP. I used to be a Photoshop wizard. I think we’ll go with this.