Category: Business Page 3 of 5

Painted Picture 2014

painted canvas

This is my Painted Picture. It’s the shape of my business in March 2014 when I turn 35. The idea is that by putting it into words, my Picture has a stronger chance of becoming reality.

Framing your design brand

blank paper notebook

Sometimes even the most amazing designers get stuck at communicating their own message.

The disconcertion of spec


It’s bemusing to see $1.78 billion retailer JCPenney crowdsourcing its brand identity.

You don’t need a designer


You need someone who knows how to use computer software.

On unpaid internships

Sewickley bridge, Pennsylvania

Would I take the opportunity again? Absolutely.

Be brilliant at the basics

three shipping containers in a dock

Don’t try to accommodate every customer.

Amazon Associates: helping designers look sharp

Amazon smile logo

It’s hard to imagine someone clicking an Amazon link for a design book, then thinking to themselves, “Mmmm, peanut butter.” But it happens.

iMac buying tips

Apple wallpaper

I upgraded to a 27-inch iMac. Here are a few tips if you’re thinking of buying one, too.

Quality vs quantity

pantone leaves

I’d make a lot more money if I accepted every project on the table.

But there’d be consequences.

Responding to spec work requests

golden ticket

I rarely reply to the weekly email requests that ask for spec work. Today I did.


NO!SPEC logo

I offered to create a fresh look for the NO!SPEC website.

The Win Without Pitching Manifesto

Win Without Pitching Manifesto

Lots of solid advice to use when dealing with clients.

Advice for design students

information sign clouds

With 700+ pages on this site, here’s the content I think is most helpful to students.

Showing sketches to clients

sharpened pencils

“Can I see sketches?” A perfectly valid client-request.

When small is good


As businesses get larger, it’s easier to hide bad people in them. This is because there are so many things going on, alongside numerous coworkers who can shield one’s dismal performance.

Proverbially speaking

Chinese typography

Chinese proverbs might not relate directly to the design profession, but with a little translation, it’s easy to see how designers can heed the advice.

I wish I’d known that

green dice sixes

What advice would you give a design graduate? Chris Arnold, founder of Creative Orchestra and former creative director at Saatchi & Saatchi, offers his pearls of wisdom.

AIGA panel on spec work

integrity type

Here’s a video from an AIGA Metro North event titled reSPECt, “A civilized dialog between advocates and opponents of speculative branding and design work.”

More than just a title

Chess King

Titles can matter to those who hire you, but you’ve got to make sure you walk the walk.

Self-employment advice for designers

wood type

This month brought with it my five-year anniversary as a self-employed graphic designer, so I’m taking the opportunity to offer 15 pieces of advice to those thinking of “going it alone.”

How to convince your clients they need a brand, not just a logo

Coca-Cola logotype

Advice written by brand identity designer Andrew Sabatier.

How to win friends and influence people

How to Win Friends and Influence People

“In his exuberant, conversational style, internationally bestselling author Dale Carnegie offers practical advice and techniques for how to get out of a mental rut and make your life more rewarding.”

How I became a self-employed graphic designer

Myeloma Matters

I’m often asked how I made the switch to self-employment. Here’s a snapshot of that time in my life in 2004/05.

How to improve your portfolio with pro bono design

Leather portfolio detail

Pro bono is a Latin phrase that means “for the public good.”

Studio Culture

Studio Culture book cover

A brief look inside Studio Culture: The secret life of the graphic design studio.