20 Things That Annoy Graphic Designers

Things That Annoy Graphic Designers

Communication is key to a good relationship between graphic designers and their clients.

Unfortunately, it’s not always smooth sailing when it comes to communicating clearly. Don’t waste your getting frustrated rather than excited about a project.

The client, in turn, becomes disappointed because the graphic designers didn’t understand their brief correctly and delivered a subpar result.

The purpose of this article to help graphic designers and small business owners. It will help them to improve their relationship with better communication. 

If you’re a graphic designer, then this guide will help you to counter the many things clients can annoy you with before they happen.

If you’re a small business owner, then this guide will help you communicate your vision more clearly, so you get a good result. Here are 20 things that annoy graphic designers.

1: Not having the copy prepared

Graphic design is what grabs the attention of viewers, readers, and passersby.

However, the text is what will sell them on the product or service. The graphic design should be based on the copy and not the other way around. Make sure that your message is clear before you even approach a graphic designer.


2: Asking for “small” tasks to be done “quickly”

As a small business owner, chances are you’re not a graphic designer — why would you otherwise hire one?

What may seem like a short and easy task to do could be more complicated than you think. You should not assume about how “quickly” a given job can be done. 

Instead, ask the graphic designer to provide you with an estimate of how long it will take.

3: Asking for a source file

It can be tempting to ask your graphic designer to send you the source file for a project they’ve been working on.

However, you will need the software they’ve been using to edit the data yourself. Do you have Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, or Illustrator? More importantly, do you know how to use those programs?

If not, meddling with the source file could end up ruining the design. Instead, leave the edits to your graphic designer.

4: Requesting many different versions

Creating good designs take time. Nothing will annoy a graphic designer more than a client requesting many different versions because they don’t know what they want.

Spend some time developing the concept you wish to the graphic designer to bring to life. Proper preparation will ensure that you give them an accurate brief and receive a good result.

5: Assuming that Photoshop can fix everything

woman in front of laptop computer editing photo

Granted, Photoshop is a fantastic program. It can do incredible things that will fool even the most perceptive eyes.

However, it’s not a fix-all solution. Photoshop is a toolbox, and just like a real toolbox, the number of tools and their utility is limited.

Instead, ask your graphic designer whether or not something is possible to fix in Photoshop.

6: Asking for “one last edit”

Like you should provide your graphic designer with an accurate and comprehensive brief, you should also give accurate and detailed feedback on any drafts you receive. 

You must create a note of each and every details which you want to amend and then only send your feedback to the designer. Nothing is more annoying than hearing “one more thing…”

7: Basing your idea on another design

Although the adage “don’t fix it if it ain’t broken” holds true in many cases, you want your design to be unique.

Copying the competition will not make you stand out, and plagiarism is a faux pas in most industries. Instead, mention what specific elements you like about other designs and ask if your designer can achieve a similar effect.

8: Using Google images

It’s quick and easy to find great photos in Google Image search. The problem is that the vast majority of those images belong to someone else.

You don’t want to land in trouble because of copyright infringement. There’s plenty of free and paid stock image available online.


9: Setting unreasonable deadlines

Asking your graphic designer to have a complicated project completed by the next day is absurd.

Refer to Thing #2 and don’t assume that something will be done quickly and easily. Instead of this, you should ask your graphic designer if he/she could complete the project by a particular time, and if not, then you can ask them when.

10: Haggling on price

man looking at Macbook

Trying to negotiate down the rates of your graphic designer is terrible form. You have presumably picked out your graphic designer from a list of possible options on a freelance website.

There are many different graphic designers all charging vastly different rates. You get what you pay for, so don’t try to haggle with your designer. Instead, hire a cheaper designer.

11: Tacking new tasks on to a project

It can be tempting to ask for additional functions to be completed about a project. Once your designer has created a brilliant logo for you, you might want it on your business card, letterheads, website, etc. That’s great — make sure to include it in brief. 

I will cost you extra if you choose different formats because this will take up more of the designers time. Don’t get yourself confused that it’s included in original cost.

12: Abstract requests

Although asking your designer to make a design “edgy” or “contemporary” doesn’t mean anything.

It’s too abstract, and will only serve to confuse the designer. What your designer considers “edgy” might not match up with your idea of that term. Be specific in your language to avoid disappointment.


13: Not providing high-resolution material

You need to provide high-resolution images, logos, etc. if you want your graphic designer to produce a good result. Asking them to “take a screenshot” then “edit it” will not cut it.

This is particularly important if you plan on printing the design. You will find the printers so merciless when you will try to get the quality of what is being published. Avoid pixelation and provide high-resolution material.

14: Going back to the original concept

A sure-fire way to dishearten a graphic designer is to ask for multiple edits and alterations, only to ask the designer to revert to the original idea.

This will make it seem like all your previous requests were utterly unnecessary, and doesn’t build trust between you and the designer.

15: Providing an MS Word or Paint template

black iPad

Asking a graphic designer to continue working on something that you’ve created in Microsoft Word or Paint won’t fly. 

They have not designed these programs for professional graphic design use. There is no chance your graphic designer can make it look good — no matter their level of experience.

16: Paying in exposure

How many bills have you paid with exposure? How many bags of groceries will exposure get you at the local store? This one should be a no-brainer, and yet graphic designer still experience this issue on a regular basis.

Graphic designers need to keep the heat on to do their work, so you should pay them accordingly.

17: Requesting unlimited revisions

Never-ending projects is a graphic designer’s worst nightmare. Good graphic designers will have some clients, of which you are one.

The world doesn’t revolve around you — unfortunately. Avoid this issue by agreeing on a set number of revisions with the designer before the project starts.

18: Asking for a quick quote

This relates back to assuming that a given project is cut-and-dry. Asking your graphic designer how much a logo will cost is so as like asking a car dealership how much a car costs.

The answer is “it depends.” Provide the graphic designer with as much detail as possible to get an accurate estimate of how long it will take and how much it will cost.

19: Constant communication

Being in touch regularly is an excellent way to ensure smooth communication and keep each other updated.

Calling or messaging your graphic designer at inappropriate times will guarantee that you annoy them. They need time to work on their projects, and sometimes graphic designers have lives outside of work too.

20: Leaving everything to the designer

Just like not providing enough details for a project can derail it, you shouldn’t leave the entire vision in the hands of the designer.

They can’t read your mind, and also asking them to do so will only result in disappointment and frustration. 

Even though the graphic designer is the expert, don’t forget that you are the one having a problem which needs to be solved. Describe it accurately so they can help you. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-uUx4420XY

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