Dear Ueno is an advice column for people who for some weird reason think we know what we’re doing. Read more about all this, or check out our old advice.

A question from “Anonymous” via email:

Do you have any tips on presenting your designs to a client?

An answer by Vinesh Gayadin, Art Director at Ueno NY:

Dear Anonymous,

In my experience, no presentation is the same. The “right” way to present depends on so many different things, including the client, the people, the project and the stage of your project.

I’ll tell you about how I approach presentations…

The creative battle to impress in times of over-consumption of Entertainment & media

Entertainment & media — movies, audio, and digital platforms — have grown exponentially, since the last decade. To penetrate and impress audiences through an overload of media consumption, advertisers/marketers, writers, designers and filmmakers are taking drastic measures to stand out. Increasingly, this steers them away from creative instinct to a dependence on the subjective interpretation of data and statistics.

Why have we become so hard to impress?

The current quality of content is the highest it’s ever been. The budgets of on demand tv series and films are commensurate with what was recently considered, high-level Hollywood budgets.As a result, the eye of the ‘average’ viewer is now trained to detect and expect high (Hollywood-like) quality. This makes most audiences less accepting to anything of lower quality. The expectation and demand for high quality content has leaped exponentially.

Anything you create will be measured against a new quality bar.; The quality of your header video for a website will be measured against the quality of Blade Runner 2049…

The house shown above, represents my creative workflow. A three floor house in which every floor means a new phase in the process. I will elaborate on this idea of a layered creative workflow and why this is important for me as a designer/art director.

What are the 3 floors of this creative house?

0 — Ground floor: Imagination
Here lays the fundamental bricks of creative imagination; the only way to go up in the house, is to walk through this floor.

1 — First floor: Creation
A big floor that requires a lot of activity to craft, flesh out and evolve the idea’s from the ground floor up.

2 — Top floor: Get in and get out
A somewhat scary attic that pushes your familiar boundaries and knowledge in creation. (Control of time and success is not guaranteed here, so don’t spend too long here).

0 — Ground floor: Imagination

Imagine, you are hungry after a night out and walk through a street full of food trucks. To decide upon your meal, you could gather all information by going through every menu, talk to each individual chef, ask for food samples etc.

In practice, you will not do this. It’s too time consuming and the investment of time and effort will simply not seem profitable to you. Instead, you use selective input to construct a perception of reality that suffices for your availability of information to make that decision. …

Vinesh Gayadin

Designer + Art Director —

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