Blog Post: It's CRAP, You Design Like a 5 Yr. Old
Cincinnati, OH | Posted: 06/07/2015 | Author: Stuart Koenig
Any working creative knows that criticism comes with the job. Doesn’t matter what your creative endeavor, you know your work is going to be exposed to other people’s reviews, judgements and feedback. Even seasoned pros, that know their work is solid and don’t care what others think, can be hurt by negative comments. If you’re new to the job or unsure about the state of your current work product the comments can be damaging. Frankly it sucks.
Karate Kick To the Gut
The trick here is to learn how to take a full on karate kick to the gut. You need to be prepared for your Creative Director (or client) to completely eviscerate your Mona Lisa directly in front of you. No, they’re not Lucifer (ok, maybe they are) but you need to recognize that this is going to happen over and over. And over.
Recognize It Sucks
So you need to expand your thinking and be honest with yourself that this process is going to hurt from time to time. Remember our business is highly subjective and someone has to be the design/creative police. Maybe it’s deserved, maybe it’s not. But recognize that you aren’t going to like hearing it sometimes.
No Screaming, Just Learning
Don’t Over React. This is a learning opportunity. Remember that these are only opinions and really there aren’t any rights or wrongs. Face it, not everyone is going to like what you present. The key is to remain positive and learn from the experience. As you listen to the feedback, ask specifics and get detailed information about what they liked or didn’t like. Save this feedback and remember to draw upon it and reflect on it the next time you need to present.
It’s Definitely Not Personal
Never take this feedback personally. Brush it off and chaulk it up as part of the process. Try to enjoy the experience because it’s this part of the process that helps to grow your craft. Regardless of how painful or nasty the reviewer is they are pushing you to improve - which ultimately makes your work stronger. So rather than plotting to slash all four of the reviewer’s tires, find a safe distance and keep your feelings in perspective.
An Honest Deep Breath
Now that you’ve been kicked, bring a little closure to the event. Repeat what you’ve heard and question anything that isn’t clear. Take a moment or two to lick your wounds and then take an honest look at the work and feedback. Was the feedback constructive? Is there opportunity for improvement? We all need good honest feedback in order to grow.