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Kristal Clear Graphics
Offering Creative Services from Print Web and Beyond Offering Creative Services from Print Web and Beyond Offering Creative Services from Print Web and Beyond

Kristal YoungThe 4 C's of Crystals:

I'm sure most of you are aware of the 4 C's of diamonds, cut, color, clarity and carat. It's an easy guideline to help the consumer select a high quality diamond. But have you heard of The 4 C's of Crystals? These are similar guidelines I developed to help businesses and consumers identify crystal clear graphic design. They are: CREATIVE, CORPORATE, COMPETITIVE and CHARMING. While I originally developed the 4 C's of Crystals to tie in closely with a play on words to my company, Kristal Clear Graphics, this is a helpful guide that can be used when looking for any graphic design company or similar creative professional.

Over the course of the next four newsletters, I'll explain each of these important qualities in depth, starting with CREATIVE. A graphic designer must be creative. They must be able to make eye-catching, professional looking, unique graphics that YOU like. But that's only half the battle. In order to be effectively creative, they also need to listen to their clients. A great graphic designer has a strong right brained creative side paired with a more analytical left brain that helps with problem solving and completing the task at hand accurately.

While it might seem obvious a graphic designer should be creative, this word, like many parts of graphic design and art is subjective. Approaching a new project with a creative mindset to come up with a new look is equally important as the ability to curb their creativity to coincide with client parameters. Let's say you're in need of a new promo cover for your informational dvd you just had made. You have a set budget allotted for design time, decided it needs to have a youthful look using your company's colors, and you want it to be a single sheet, two sided. Depending on the CREATIVE thoughts of your graphic designer, you could end up with one of many scenarios. Here are a couple possibilities to watch out for.

  1. The designer creates a beautiful piece, very different and unique, but it's a multi-page folded piece instead of a single sheet because "the designer felt the larger size would be more dynamic and eye catching with their design. Maybe so, but the extra large dimensions cost you more money in design time and at the printer.
  2. The designer creates three options for you to choose from. You like one a lot, but have just a few minor adjustments. All seems great until you get the bill and see the designer forgot about your budget. The two extra concepts that got thrown out took up additional time you didn't allow for in the budget. If they had delivered just one concept at first, at least there would have been a chance not all three concepts would need to be created, AND you would have been aware that asking for an extra concept would probably mean extra time and money. Now there's nothing wrong with looking at more than one concept at once. That's sometimes very helpful for a client. Plus, from experience I know it can be part of my own brainstorming process. One concept develops into the next so it's easy to separate out and deliver multiple concepts. The problem comes in because the designer didn't communicate this presentation option to the client before hand and disregarded the budget directions.
  3. While the designer did use your company's colors, the concept, in your opinion, is anything but "youthful". Well, we have to keep in mind that "youthful" in this context is pretty subjective. The designer explains his reasoning for why his design is youthful, but you still disagree and don't like it. If the designer asks questions to pin point the problem and makes a new concept in a different direction, even if it's not exactly 100% on target yet, this is a good sign. However, If the designer continues to insist his first design was the essence of youth and subtly infers you don't know good art when you see it, this would be probably someone to steer clear of. They're probably a magnificent artist, but lack the left brain balance to take constructive criticism that their idea just wasn't what you, the client wanted. In the end, you are the client and what you want is what you should get.

Overall, if a graphic designer has creative talent, but doesn't stay within the parameters you give them, you'll be wasting time and money that will need to be redone later. However, on the opposite end, you need to be careful that your designer delivers your project with a professional look and creative edge that screams "This business is serious about what they're doing!"

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In This Issue:

Designer's Touch Collection

Contact Kristal Young
Kristal Clear Graphics

Client of the the Quarter:
Jamie Durner, Ayurvedic Practitioner & Wellness Educator
Jamie Durner, Ayurvedic Practitioner & Wellness Educator

I have used Kristal for help with everything from a business card re-design, brochures, logos and general graphic support for my website. She balances the marketing language with the graphics, making sure that the message is clear and the graphics accentuate rather than dominate a piece. What I appreciate about Kristal is not only her amazing eye and how she can capture and create my ideas and bring them to life in a way I could never even imagine, but also her communication throughout the entire process. Everything is “Kristal Clear” – how much time will be involved, what is realistic within my budget, what my options are. She is a not only a talented graphic artist but a true professional.

Jamie Durner, Ayurvedic Practitioner & Wellness Educator

Ayurvedic natural health practitioner and wellness educator Jamie Durner provides professional nutritional and lifestyle assessment, educational information, coaching, home resources, and hands-on therapies help you achieve your wellness goals and be your best with a healthy body, sharp mind, balanced energy and fulfilled life. She specializes in natural, non-invasive solutions for pain and chronic health conditions as well as aging with ease and living in optimal health. She provides individual consultations, group programs and teleclasses, Kundalini yoga classes, corporate wellness in-services, and self-care home products. Sessions can be in-person or over the phone or Skype. Find out more about her offerings and sign up for her monthly Healing and Harmony Ezine at www.ayurvedawellness.org.

If you're interested in spotlighting your business here, whether you have a design we worked on in mind or not, contact Contact Kristal and we'll work through the details.


FREE Parent's Album and MORE Discounts

You're probably aware of my Designer's Touch Wedding Albums, which have always been, and still are the center piece of my Designer's Touch Collection. Visit the latest by clicking here. In fact, if you've seen my Facebook page you've probably been privileged to see some of my recent designs www.facebook.com/kristalcleargraphicsllc However, it's time for some less familiar products of The Collection to get the spot light as well including, Save-the-Date and Thank You Cards or Post Cards, Wedding Logos and surprisingly affordable Photo Editing Services.

Getting married? When you place an order anytime before your wedding date, you will receive significant discounts on your album and more:

• Order your album before your wedding date with a 50% deposit and SAVE up to $300!
• Receive 40% off other products like Save the Dates, Wedding Logo Design, Thank You Post Cards & all photo editing services!
• Refer a friend who purchases an album and get ANOTHER FREE Parents Album!


Important KCG Reminders

If you missed a previous quarterly newsletter and want to catch up, you can always find it online or contact me for a personal copy.

Not much new with you? Maybe you know someone who has something special going on and a Designer's Touch Photo Gift would be a perfect way to celebrate? Kristal Clear Graphics always appreciates you passing along a recommendation to your family and friends. As an added thank you, you'll receive a discount off your next project when you do have something to celebrate, yourself.


Photo Tips

Each quarterly newsletter I like to share new photography tips with you to help give you a jump start on creating amazing photos for Designer's Touch Collages.

7. Take pictures of people at their eye level. Pictures taken looking down at them tend to distort their appearance, while pictures taken looking up at them make them look larger and less focused. Consider getting on your knees to photograph someone who is sitting or when photographing children.

8. Know how far your camera’s flash reaches and apply this to obtain the best photo. Most flash ranges are less than 10 feet.

If you'd like to see the other tips, contact me at kristal@kristalcleargraphics.com and type "photo tips" in the subject line



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