Have you every critiqued other peoples graphic design work, or for that matter had your own critiqued? It can be tricky I know. For myself, I am always nervous when I send off a visual to one of my graphic design clients, as you never quite know how it will be received, and I have been doing this for nearly 20 years.

Just lately I have been meeting up with an old friend of mine who did the same graphic design course as me years ago. A lot of the work she currently does is very corporate and a style is already set so she doesn’t get much opportunity to be creative. She was very nervous about designing a logo for a friend of hers because she felt she hadn’t been using her creative brain for a long time, so we got together so she could show me her first logo design ideas.

We went through the logo design options she had with me throwing in suggestions for new directions she could take the designs in. I am always wary when giving critism as I have been given terrible feedback in the past, you know the sort if thing, when someone tells you that’s not what they want but they have no idea why. What I found however was that critiquing her designs gave me a real buzz and ideas were flowing far more than in my own work at the moment. Now why is this? Perhaps because it is not my project the pressure is gone, perhaps because I am an outsider seeing something fresh it is easier, perhaps its because I am talking it through with someone else – two heads are better than one. She has also helped me with feedback on some logos designs that I produced for a charity.

What I have learned from this is, that as freelancer designers working from home, we miss out on seeing and talking about other peoples work as well as our own. We are going to continue meeting up every few weeks to talk through ideas (and of course have a nice lunch at the same time 🙂 ). Purely the act of getting away from your desk and getting out and talking face to face with a friend in you own field can help too.

Try meeting up to critique each others work or brainstorm graphic design ideas

Do you share your ideas and critique designs with your designer friends?