Some ideas on working with a clientThink of illustration as a collaboration. You have been hired to work with your client to complete a visual task.
There's an easier approach-think of it as the five C's: client, communication, collaboration, creativity and continuity all rolled up together.
First comes the client of course. This will involve much discussion of ideas that leads to a collaboration for a project. The project produces illustrations from your creativity. Lastly, if this collaboration goes well there will be continued projects to come.
How to do this effectively is to think like a director- a director of your freelance business. You are are sharing your knowledge, know-how, skills and experience. This involves a confident enthusiasm that produces a positive working partnership.
Never feel that your insights are not part of your job. Your unique visual sensitivities in this world is what makes you marketable-it becomes part of your style set. You and your art are a package deal!
Good creative collaborations involve ideas, conversation, getting involved, sharing opinions, and constructive communication. The active parts involve a lot of listening, note taking and following up. Clients are not looking for illustrator super stars-they are looking for a meeting of the minds that helps them get the visual message they are hiring you for. It's a service!
Clients like what they like for many reasons. Collaborations take time and take work. So when you grab a clients attention and they want to work with you, it's good to treat it as the very big creative deal that it is. It means you are doing all those five C's right!
“Optimism is the most important human trait, because it allows us to evolve our ideas, to improve our situation, and to hope for a better tomorrow.” -Seth Godin