I received an email a little while ago about designing some Christmas crackers for a mutual friend's family business. I read through the brief and it sounded really fun, as they were asking for the crackers and the box to be designed and then sent to the manufacturer in China to produce. This sounded quite exciting and so I decided to say yes to them.
This was one of the worst decisions I have made this year. I thought it would be a great brief to have to include in Extended Practice, but in the end it turned into a disaster. I designed a nutcracker styled cracker for them and mocked it up on some glossy stock and sent it over to them. They said that we needed to immediately revisit the brief as this was not what they had asked me to do. In the end, they had me designing a bright blue and orange cracker which they absolutely loved and I absolutely hate.
I was treated so rudely and spoken to like I didn't have any graphic design knowledge what so ever. It actually led to me feeling really upset, deflated and I lost motivation for a couple of weeks because he knocked my confidence and made me feel rubbish about my work.
In the end a lot of emails were sent between us, and I had to ask him for more money, because we had already gone past the agreed deadline, and I had already agreed to less money in the first place, as my quote was 'way above our budget'. He then accused me of all sorts, relating to the law and their company rights.
I ended up having to finish the work and sent it to them and then said that I wanted no further communication with them at all. He even said at one point that the fact they had provided me with this amazing opportunity would mean that I could have a 'live' brief to include in my portfolio which is very rare. Little did he know (hadn't researched) that I have already worked with multiple clients and didn't need his job to help me to find employment when I graduate.
I feel as though this has been such a huge learning curve for me and this simply pushed me to develop the brief further once I had finished the work for him. It took me a little while to find motivation but I have managed to create one of my strongest outcomes of the year and designed my nutcrackers which I am extremely proud of and have submitted as part of extended practice.