BRANDING QUESTIONS, ANSWERED
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY DESIGN BRIEF IS READY FOR YOU?
The best way to know is to send me what you have and we’ll chat over the telephone before you make any decisions. If I struggle to visualise your brand identity after discussing your brief, then it’s likely there are gaps that need filling. Either way, we’ll be able to establish the next best step before you invest in design.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER OUR INITIAL CALL?
After talking over the telephone we’ll both have a clear idea whether your brief is ready and whether our styles are the right fit. From there we’ll schedule a one hour Skype/FaceTime call to go through your brief in more detail. After our call, I’ll send you a detailed proposal via email.
HOW SOON CAN YOU START MY DESIGNS?
Projects tend to book up a couple of months in advance, although this can increase during the busier months between September and March. I make it very clear in my proposal when I’m able to start your project and what I’ll need from you to secure dates.
WHAT DO I NEED TO HAVE READY BEFORE YOU CAN START MY DESIGNS?
When we’ve established a crystal clear brief and you’ve supplied either a Pinterest board or photographic references to aid the creative direction, we’ll be ready to start. I ask for a holding deposit to secure proposed dates - this can be either 25% or 50% depending on the size of the project and when we plan to start.
WHAT DO I GET IN A BRAND IDENTITY PACKAGE?
Your brand package will be tailored to exactly what you and your business needs, but there are a handful of essentials you must have to confidently carry your new brand style forwards. These include: a logo design, fonts, Pantone colours, supportive graphics, pattern & texture (where appropriate), stationery designs, Brand Bedrock PDF (Brand Guidelines) & social media icons. Your brand elements will be supplied in varying formats and shared with you via Dropbox.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO COMPLETE & HOW MUCH DOES A BRAND IDENTITY COST?
A Brand Identity Essentials package which includes everything you’ll need for the future starts at £3,500. Every project is different but, as a general rule of thumb, it’s likely to take approx 4-5 weeks from start to finish.
WEBSITE QUESTIONS, ANSWERED
DO I NEED TO INVEST IN A BRAND IDENTITY BEFORE YOU DESIGN MY WEBSITE?
Yes. The design of your site will be an informed and intelligent extension of your brand identity, so it’s important that what you have now doesn’t just feel right for your brand but gives us all the tools we need to take it forward with confidence.
WHAT DO I NEED TO HAVE READY BEFORE YOU CAN START DESIGNING?
You’ll need a website plan/structure, wireframes of your pages showing your planned content placement and your finalised content, including copy and images. It’s not impossible to start designing without your content, but it tends to make for a rocky design process further down the line which could have cost implications, so it’s best to get your elements as finalised as you possibly can from the start.
WHAT ARE WIREFRAMES?
Wireframes are either a page-by-page sketch or a written document listing each web page you plan to have, and exactly what content you expect to see on each page. They form the very foundations of your site and drive the design, so it’s vital they’re in place from the outset.
WHAT DESIGN SOFTWARE DO YOU USE?
All bespoke website designs are created using Adobe Photoshop CC and are supplied to your web developer as tidy, layered files that include relevant links and fonts.
If your business doesn’t require utterly bespoke design, I have a SquareSpace offering which includes both the design and build of your website with me, from start to finish.
DO YOU BUILD WEBSITES AS WELL AS DESIGN THEM?
No (and yes). I’m a designer, first and foremost. I’m not a web developer. If your site is a bespoke design you’ll have jpg proofs to review and sign off first, then they will be coded by a web developer from scratch to create your live site.
If you’re having a SquareSpace website then my approach is different. I’ll work on your design as I build your site on the software - the two will go hand in hand. Although this option does come with design limitations, it’s often perfect for new businesses or for those keen to stick to a tighter budget.
WHAT’S INCLUDED IN A WEBSITE DESIGN PACKAGE EXACTLY?
I don’t offer a website ‘package’ because no two projects are ever the same, and so much difference is driven by the content and functionality. Instead I set out all deliverables clearly in a proposal once we’ve spoken so you’ll know exactly what you’re getting, and for how much. Your project can include anything from just one homepage design, right through to every vital page of your site.
WHAT IF ALL I WANT IS JUST ONE OR TWO WEB PAGES DESIGNED?
As long as you have a strong brand identity that you feel captures your brand values with distinction, then we can go on to create as many or as few web pages as you would like. The more pages you have designed, the more control and consistency you’ll have over your visitors’ online experience. Simple.
HOW MUCH DOES A WEBSITE DESIGN COST & HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO COMPLETE?
For bespoke designs that cover approximately 5-6 pages the investment starts at £2,500 and is likely to take 3-4 weeks from start to sign-off, before handing over to your web developer. SquareSpace websites (that include both design & build from Making Waves) also start from £2,500 and take approximately 3-4 weeks from start to go-live.
DO YOU ONLY WORK WITH CERTAIN WEB DEVELOPERS?
Over the years I’ve connected with brilliant people in the industry which means I can cherry-pick the right developers for your project, but you’re by no means restricted to this approach. If you have a brilliant developer who we both feel is capable of achieving what you need, then I’m very happy to work with them too.
WHO MANAGES MY PROJECT?
If you decide to work with one of my developer connections, I won’t white label them or hide them from you because it’s important you have an easy, ongoing relationship with them moving forwards. Whilst we will work together in the background, you’ll have direct communication from me during the design process and direct communication from your developer during the build.
PRINT QUESTIONS, ANSWERED
DO YOU HAVE EXPERIENCE IN DESIGNING FOR PRINT?
I worked with an established print company as a designer back in my early days, so I have a strong grasp of the practicalities of design for print. Understanding paper and card stocks is important too if you’re going to set a two dimensional standard for your brand, so I’m very happy to advise on a branding level although my offering doesn’t include direct liaison with printers.
DO YOU KNOW OF GOOD PRINTERS YOU CAN POINT ME TOWARDS WHEN MY DESIGNS ARE COMPLETE?
Yes, I have a handful of great connections when it comes to printing. When your designs are complete I’m happy to advise and point you in the right directions, although do bear in mind my offering doesn’t include managing your print orders.
WHAT FILE FORMATS WILL I HAVE?
All of your designs will be created using the latest Adobe Creative Cloud and you’ll have PDF files of all your stationery. You’ll be sent a Dropbox link where you can access everything yourself, although I always recommend you make copies of everything to your own computer too.
DO YOU DO PACKAGING DESIGN?
I do create packaging designs although I’m not a specialist Packaging Designer. Sometimes I’ll create mockups of how the branding should look and sit on a product, then the exact packaging design is taken forward by a specialist. In other instances I’ve created the packaging in-house myself, it really depends on the product and the print requirements.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PANTONE, CMYK AND RBG COLOURS?
Choosing a Pantone colour swatch can be compared with walking into a paint shop, selecting a specific colour off the shelf and painting directly with it. This method of printing is more expensive and can result in more waste, but it’ll give you 100% confidence in an exact colour match every time you print.
CMYK printing is a 4-colour breakdown (C=Cyan, M=Magenta, Y=Yellow & K=Black), so for instance it will break down a specific Pantone colour to the closest equivalent using these 4 colours. This print process is fast, effective and affordable which is why it’s a very popular format for printing, but it can’t guarantee an exact colour match or consistency every time.
RGB (Red, Green & Blue) is a screen colour format. Everything you see in a digital form uses RGB colour, therefore it’s impossible to print in this colour process - it must be converted to CMYK first. This conversion can often affect colour appearance.