Designer Triggers: Are These Your Pet Peeves Too?

Each of us has our own pet peeves. Some pet peeves can irrationally make us annoyed, and some are totally understandable especially if they get in the way. For designers, there can be a lot of things that can trigger their exasperation. These are not just simple pet peeves, but also issues that can hinder their workflow as well as the quality of their work.


Conflicting Effects

Combining conflicting design effects can be annoying for designers, but sometimes it has to be done. To make conflicting effects work, designers should make sure to do it tastefully and with caution. Otherwise, it will be overkill and can look confusing.




Hated Fonts

For some reason, some of the most hated fonts such as Comic Sans and Jokerman are the most popular. Sometimes you just want to cringe when you see a design that could have been great but lost significant points with the use of lame fonts. But hey, at least you, designer or not, know which fonts work and don’t work, depending on the purpose.

Problematic Clients

Problematic clients can range from those who do not pay on time to those who are too picky and change their mind a lot. As specialists, clients usually leave everything to us, trusting that we know better when it comes to what’s best for them. It’s why they came to us for help, after all. Of course, it’s also better when clients already know what they want. They will give us a design brief indicating their requirements and expectations, including what colors and fonts they like. That way it will be easy for designers to brainstorm ideas and create different studies.


But it’s not always a happy ending. There will be a time that the client won’t like any of the choices and will insist a design element, say for example a certain font or color, that they would like to be incorporated, and the designer believes that what they want to happen will not look great. As professionals, the best way for designers to deal with this is to advise the client a workaround and come up with a compromise. If the client still insists, then what they want is what they get. We know it won’t be fun working within limits but it should not stop the designer from producing the best outcome, with both the client’s satisfaction and the design’s best quality in mind.


via MyDesy


Software Crashes

When the software you rely on every day fails to deliver what needs to be done, it gets on anyone’s nerves. Make it your second nature to save and backup your work to avoid the risk of losing a significant amount of work. Luckily for us here in MicroCreatives, most of the programs we use, including Adobe CC, have an auto-save function in case we forget to hit CTLR+S.



Spelling and Grammar Mistakes

You may think that designers don’t care about copy and they just paste it on their design. But a good designer makes sure that even the copy is clean. Typos can be easy to miss but obvious spelling and grammar mistakes are unacceptable. Good thing for all-around creative agencies like MicroCreatives, copywriters and editors are there to help designers ensure that the copy is clean and free from errors.



Stretched Fonts

Again with fonts. Sometimes designers have to stretch fonts when they can find no other way around it. But as much as possible, it’s best not to do this. If another designer will work on the project or a new design project with the same elements, it will take long for them to realize that the font has been stretched, that’s why font checkers couldn’t recognize it.



Unorganized Layers

Photoshop layers should be kept as clean as possible. A bad design practice is keeping hidden layers even when you don’t need it. Just delete those layers entirely and keep the ones that the design needs. However you look at it, keeping things neat and organized will save time with future edits, especially if there is more than one designer working on the project.


Typographic Orphans

Part of a designer’s job is to design content that doesn’t just look good but also to maneuvers the eyes to where the focus should be. Not only do typographic orphans stand out awkwardly, but they also unintentionally draw the readers’ attention away from what should be focused on.



Insufficient Files

When it comes to sending design files such as logos and images, not everyone is aware of the need to provide raw files or assets, high-resolution images, and the correct file format. Working with insufficient files can be frustrating. And while designers may be able to find a solution to make it work, whether you are a colleague or a client, it’s best to send them the complete assets they need in good quality and in the right file format. And on the other hand, as designers, keep in mind to inform your colleague or clients the specs and the assets you need and why you need them.




Vague Briefs

Finicky clients can be a challenge, but at least they say when they change their minds and say what they want to be changed straight away. The real challenge is when a client gives way too little information for you to work with. They will say that they trust your expertise or “just come up with something cool,” then when you’re done and you present it to them, it turns out that it isn’t what they had in mind.




Before investing an ample amount of effort on the project and to avoid getting vague instructions, designers should provide a creative brief or project brief to the client so it would be easy for them to identify the specs needed. Ask solid questions that will provide direct answers that can be interpreted visually. In the brief, in addition to asking them what they need and like, also ask them what they don’t like to see.


By becoming aware of and understanding these designer triggers, everyone in the creative team and others who work with designers, including clients, will know what designers expect and what you should do and not do when working together on a project. This is not just about adjusting to different personalities, but more on creating a better collaboration process and a smoother workflow, and ensuring that the outcome will be flawless.


If you are a designer, are these your pet peeves too? What else gives you a headache, either when working on a design project or in others’ design and work ethics? Let us know in the comments!