I used to think GEJ... never mind
Seriously, Yoma, my cousin and friend, (don't ask me how) asked me to design an e-flyer for a project we (d-xtreme unit foundation) were working on last year 2011 - "SAPELE LIBRARY BOOK-DRIVE 2011". The design had two major objectives starting from the CORE OBJECTIVE;
1. To Create mass awareness (Home and Abroad), and
2. To Inspire people to donate generously till we hit our minimum target (1000 Books).
I had to do this in less 4hours. JESUS!!! I felt like I had used ALL my lifelines... phew! Eventually, after some painful pleasures with my "sweetheART" I arrived at this; EUREKA!!!!! And truly this was "my first KISS".
Yoma applauded the design and blogged about it immediately.
After about one week, we had over 4 leading Nigerian bloggers, including Abisona, and Gbenga Sesan (with international footage) requesting to blog about this campaign for FREEEEEEE!!!! (here are a few links below). Now, I tell you we received loads of emails, phone calls, and of course dollars ($) as well (toh badt gan, hehehehehe). People tweeted, shared on facebook, on BlackBerry, it spread like wild fire, you remember. Did we hit our 1st objective? YESSSS!!!! How about the 2nd objective? We were just a little short of 1000 BOOKS, which we FREELY donated to the Sapele Library before we gracefully received a generous letter of recognition by the Government.
Many years ago, as an 'innocent' child, when I didn't know the difference between sex and fornication, hmmm, I could tell that one of the main reasons people (like myself) 'drink' Peak Milk was because of it's unique sensual label design appeal with the palm trees at the beach side (heightened pleasure). Lovely design I must say, but it got me thinking ever since that this must be one of the reasons I don't buy other milk brands, why? DESIGN! DESIGN!! DESIGN!!! and TASTE too!!!! lol. Honestly, since then, I began to see design beyond it's artistic genius, but as a BUSINESS SOLUTION.
Here's where Designers fail on-the-job; When a client meets us and requests for a logo, or a flyer, or an Ad Campaign, they do so for specific reasons (objectives). they truly don't want your artistic designs, they want Business Solutions. To the client, Design is a "MEANS TO AN END", as opposed to how we, the Graphic Artists see it as the "END OF A MEANS" (the means being the creative process to our final designs). A great friend once told me that "until you start thinking like the CEO, you would never churn out great designs" - Ogbonna, the shortest Nigerian strategist. So, here are a few tips that have helped me in the past 2years;
1. Agree to a clearly stated/written objective(s)
2. Probe into the brand and client and understand "their WHY" they are in business.
3. THINK and DESIGN with the END in mind without necessarily ignoring the means completely.
4. Stop thinking and just have fun (hehehehehehe)
If you diligently apply these lessons you'd no longer see designs as mere artistic works, but much more as BUSINESS SOLUTIONS inspired by heART with measurable results. Hence, I no longer refer to myself as a Graphic Artist, but I am UyiDegarson your BRAND DESIGNER.