Vixxie’s 25 facepalm designer moments
Vixxie’s 25 facepalm designer moments
My life as a designer has no shortage of smash-face-on-desk moments that every graphic designer can relate to. Here’s my favourite selection of those “funny ‘cause it’s true” scenarios .
1. That moment I eat or drink something ridiculously vile and I wonder why on earth I even have that in my fridge, just to remember that I bought it because I liked the packaging so much and I had to have it.
2. That moment I realize, once again, that I live in a world with a billion of people that consider themselves designers. The vast majority of them have no clue about design. Those that do have an actual clue, all seem to hate eachother.
3. That moment I burst out in laughter at the bistro table because a clearly unsophisticated customer who watched too much Njam TV complains about the (perfectly fine) cuisson of his dish. While I look at the waiter and think “welcome to my world mate”. It always reminds me how people pay me for my design expertise yet always think they know everything better “because they’ve seen it on tv/internet”.
4. That moment I am working at my pc on automatic pilot, juggling different file formats for different outputs and my friend, who has been watching me for a while, cleverly points out: “You see CMYK, RGB, hex and pantone like Neo sees the Matrix”. <3
5. That moment I ask a customer for high res logo material and he answers that he just sent me an e-mail with it. And that it’s in Microsoft Word. And if that’s okay with me.
6. That one occasion I felt like being part of a hostage negotiation because I refused to send the final high res artwork until the payment had been done. Some clients are notorious defaulters though..
7. The dreadful moment after sending out a finished pdf file, waiting in agony for a reply and praying they won’t ask you for the powerpoint file.
8. Those moments of quiet contemplation, deciding wether to spend my summer bonus on cosmetic teeth implants after surgery or saving up for that ultimate Wacom Cintiq touch screen display.
9. That awkward moment when my boyfriend tells me that I sometimes “snore” as if I’m having an orgasm. Secretly I think that my wet dream consist of being able to finish a hole-in-one: an artwork just exactly the way I intended it, without having to suffer 7 correction rounds.
10. That painful moment every time I see people choosing Arial Narrow for their standard e-mail font and it causes a twitch in my right eye. Comic Sans already caused a permanent twitch in the left one.
11. The feeling of alienation I endure when I’m working on a desktop that isn’t mine, and I don’t have the comfort of my 7 million different custom fonts.
12. The allergic reaction I get to chinese manufacturers asking for the original .ai file because they can’t accept an outlined pdf. And you know bloody well that if you provide it, in a few months, your slightly modified lay-out will show proudly on the product of your b-brand competitor.
13. Those days I walk past the meeting club of the AA, and I wonder if they have groups for Fontoholics Anonymous too. Hello, my name is Vixxie and I’m a compulsive collector of fonts, vectors and free stock photos. I have an external library HDD that can easily compete in size with those of movie torrent dowloaders.
14. That moment where I reach the 13th layer in Photoshop and I just know that Murphy’s Law will slap me in the face soon, locking up my program and losing all my progress. So I hit the “Save” button and I watch the progress bar move with the suspense that compares to watching a blockbuster thriller.
15. Running some larger files in Illustrator and Photoshop at the same time, living on the edge while trying to open Indesign too, and my computer sounds like it’s going to create the apocalypse.
16. Those moments I’m working in complex Indesign magazine spreads with a minefield of guidelines and strict alignemnent rules… and I suddenly realize that I may be able to work magic with letters, but I do not even know how to add or subtract two-figure numbers.
17. That one moment I’ve struggled on for days and days on a web page, only to find out that I misplaced ONE stupid closing tag, which caused the website to go berserk, and I don’t know if I want to sing a Hallellujah Gospel or throw my screen out of the window.
18. That awkward moment when my friend snaps her fingers at me and asks me if there is life on planet Vixxie, and I realize that I was busy studying the paisley pattern on her summer dress instead of listening to her story.
19. Every time that I create new packaging icons or user manual signs and I realize that, as a graphic designer, it is the only way I can feel like I’m telling people what to do. Or not to do.
20. The passion murders that I have not committed but came very close to every time I finished a design based on a poor brief with very little customer input, and the client casually asks me afterwards to add an extra 400 words. Instant enrage mechanic.
21. That moment you have 16,777,216 colors at your disposal but you just can’t find that one right shade of blue/teal/green. Comparable to spending 50 minutes trying to find the perfect font and then reverting to “good old Helvetica” regardless.
22. The countless times I banged my head on the keyboard when being asked to Photoshop a picture of a black sample product into a white one. Or when finishing the perfect design to their needs, then being asked to “keep all the colours the same, but make it a bit more, you know, ‘greenish’?” Or “shake” the design once more, as if I really enjoy making the same puzzle twice. Ugh.. deluge.
23. The moment of panic when I run out of “Undo” commands.
24. The moment I realize I’ve been looking at stock photos too often: when I begin to recognize them everywhere and the models in the stock become my very own celebrities.
25. How it feels being the only designer at the company… 🙂