Graphic designers create impressive and unique visuals such as logos, business cards, websites, brochures, and many more. These crucial visuals play a key role in promoting a brand and establishing its identity. But only a few designers stand out due to their exceptional understanding of the working of a design and how to apply it to create visual identities. Deepika Sharma is amongst such talented designers who shared her experience and expertise in an interview with Designhill.
Deepika Sharma has completed various projects and created a wide range of graphic designs for businesses on Designhill. As an independent creative graphic designer, she has contributed a lot to the industry for the past eight years by designing brand identities for a wide range of businesses. She has won 60 design contests, which is a tremendous achievement in itself. Now, she successfully runs her design studio from Noida [India].
Designhill decided to get in touch with her to have an insight into her career and experience. During the interview, she offered valuable tips on how to create meaningful design work. She also advised designers about getting new projects from clients.
“Readability, simplicity, and scalability are hallmarks of great logo design” – emphasizes Deepika Sharma, 60 design contests winner.
Here Are The Excerpts of Interview with Deepika Sharma
Designhill: When did you start designing, and why did you choose to be a graphic designer?
Deepika: I started designing back in 2010. But, I always had an interest in designing right from my school days when I was a science student. I used to draw diagrams and sketches. I come from a medical and teaching background, but I knew that I would be unable to fit myself in that profession. So, I tried to figure out a career in graphic design as I had an interest in it.
Designhill: What does your day look like?
Deepika: My day is a mix of some learning, experimenting, and doing projects. I start my day by studying and spending some good time with my family. Then, I am with my team members for one to two hours. I read some interesting and creative blogs to update myself about the new developments in the graphic design market and how exactly things are evolving. I feel that our design industry is more about keeping ourselves updated with new styles and techniques. So, my day is a mix of some client meetings and project reviews.
Designhill: What resources do you follow to keep yourself updated?
Deepika: First of all, we should know our designing styles and what design techniques are. To do that, we have to keep practicing. Practice is the only way out to reach perfection. There are so many online resources. For instance, Chris Doe is one of the awesome coaches in the creative industry who also tells you how to get yourself in the design business in the right way. I follow that channel.
Apart from that, there are so many experts and amateurs to learn from. Sometimes you learn something from a very fresh graphic designer who has very raw skills but great ideas. Just go out there to look at what exactly interests you. There are so many ways you can explore. I also follow Christine on Instagram and his YouTube channel. Apart from that, I also follow great graphic designers who designed the National Geographic logo and many others.
If you are more into business identity and logo design, you must follow these kinds of people. They have a kind of expertise and teachings that you will get in each time you go through their writings and videos to make your foundation strong.
Designhill: Since how long have you been working with Designhill and what is your expertise?
Deepika: I have been working with Designhill for three to four years. My expertise is mainly in logo designing and corporate identity. I have also designed a few collectors, which is for brand communication.
Designhill: Are you enjoying working on Designhill?
Deepika: Yeah, absolutely. Designhill is with me from my starting phase. Apart from my full-time job, I started taking projects and was doing stuff on Designhill, which helped me and made myself more confident that later I went forward and started my studio.
Designhill: What kind of tools and techniques do you have?
Deepika: When I start a project on logo design, I try and read the brief carefully, because that is somewhere very important. Before going on your skills, you should understand exactly what the person or the client requires.
I just try and read the brief carefully and look at their competitors. I research something about those kinds of products and services. After that, I start designing a logo. I do sketching some ideas about it and then create them on-screen. I start with creating a black and white version of a logo first and then its full-color concept. I also use illustrators that I prefer and use Photoshop as well.
Designhill: Can you share three important logo design tips New graphic designers would like to know that?
Deepika: The first thing that I want to emphasize is readability. Sometimes a logo designer tries to put so much in a logo to communicate a company’s products or services. But that hampers the readability. So, avoid adding too many elements in your logo, keep it simple, and at the same time, not too generic. It should be distinctive and unique, as well. But try to make it more simple that anyone can, you know, adapt in different sizes. So yeah, let’s put it into the point.
The first one, readability of the name of the company, should not get hampered. It should be properly readable.
Secondly, your logo should be very bold, simple, and unique. You know, people should remind them.
Thirdly, check your logo if it is scalable properly or not. If you’re looking at a small logo size, are you able to see the same effect and the same presence of it or, you are just enlarging them Is it getting hampered as a personification of the brand
Apart from this, use two to three colors. Do not put everything into your logo, because it is just a unique mark of your brand. It is not something that needs to tell everything about your brand.
Designhill: Apart from designing, what are your hobbies? What makes you happy?
Deepika: I go to different exhibitions and expos because I can interact with people there. I like interacting with people and sneaking into their minds to know about their vision. What exactly the people are thinking about different things. Sometimes, in this process, I get points that help me when I work. By meeting people and interacting with them and traveling, you expose yourself to different ideas and different mindsets.
So yeah, in my spare time, I try and go out there and explore my locality, or I travel outside. I love cooking as well because it helps you to play with so many colors. Everything is somewhere affected and related to. I will say that my life is more than just a screen and software. At the same time, somewhere, designs and colors are always involved.
Designhill: How do you keep creative juices flowing in?
Deepika: There are two ways, online and offline, to be creative. Under the online way, whenever I’m somewhere looking for some ideas and inspiration, I throw myself into the online world. I look into different things that can help me connect points when I have that design brief in my head. There are so many ways to communicate one thing through your designs and your visuals.
So, I try to throw myself out there on online store resources. I look at the work of different artists that they have done previously and how they evolved in the process. I see their work and come to know how they started and now where they have reached. What exactly they have gone through. This keeps me inspiring as I’m also somewhere in the process.
As far as offline ways of getting inspiration are concerned, I go out to look for natural things about exactly the shape of the texture of everything for inspiration. You can get ideas from anywhere, such as the beauty of nature, plants, or anything that you observe. So I keep myself in a light mood so that I can push creative ideas more beyond the limit.
You also have to keep your second environment and feel things such as what cold water feels like, what exactly the texture of a leaf, stones, different clothes feel like. Then you need to know how you can interpret that in a brand and how your brand feels like. So, you should understand and feel things yourself first and then put them into an idea and create a visual out of it. You have to keep yourself engaged and involved in the process. And it’s very fulfilling as well.
Designhill: Would you like to suggest a few names or few resources which design communities can follow to seek inspiration?
Deepika: I would like to give three to four names. As Christo in an interview said that just hijack your mentors, so, learn from the person who you know and celebrate or get motivation from. So, you can follow them as they are the big names and also they have a huge history about themselves. They make your head clear about what your designs should be, how you should progress, and how you should keep yourself motivated.
Designhill: What do you think Designhill should be focusing on to help the graphic designers like you in a better way?
Deepika: I think Designhill is already doing an amazing job. I like their design contests. You can conduct some kind of workshop or something which can help graphic designers to use the fight in the right way. I understand that there are so many people who don’t exactly know the right away of profiling their accounts. You can train these people to have to make the profiles completely fulfilled. Teach them also on how to apply contests as well. There are good graphic designers, but they do not know the right way of making their profile or profiling their ID, etc.
Designhill: Can you give an overview of how designers profile on Designhill should look like?
Deepika: I think this is a very important area to work on, apart from what exactly the level of skills you have. Keep your name as a designer, very simple, clear, and authentic. It should be what exactly your real identity is until and unless you have your studio or agency. With such a name, people can directly connect with you.
You should also be specific to your services. Do not try to put each and everything in the profile. Tell the clients about what you are good at and mention your services, which is very important. Regarding the projects, place your best project in the front in your profile for the clients.
Add four to five or up to 10 creatives, which are your best work. If you are good at designing logos, add the best logo design work first and then other work that you have done. If you are into more on UI and UX design, add the design and the great projects. And in between, you can add some mix of products and end it perfectly. So this is something of flow that you wish that I feel or someone can follow and to present their projects in a better way.
Consider it especially that when you are doing some project, use the discussion board or discussion section to talk to clients to clear doubts regarding the clients’ business, work, or requirements.
Designhill: What approach should designers follow when communicating with a client?
Deepika: It is very important to be very active with the client. You should respond quickly. If clients wait for your response, they lose interest in you. So, when some client is interacting regarding a project with you directly after the selection or something, respond immediately.
There are two phases of a project. First, when the client gives a brief and posts a project, and then another is when you need any kind of information. You can use the discussion board and interact with them. When they have selected your design, they are working on your project. So, you have to be very active and specific about what kind of information you need from the client to deliver the right output.
You should ask as many questions as you want to the clients. If you want to show your interest, figure out each and everything that is going in your clients’ heads. Show your full interest and be very active and be honest with your deadlines.
Deepika Sharma, a successful independent graphic designer, advises budding designers to update themselves with the new information. They should look up to the inspirational designers for clarity of thought regarding different aspects of designs. She asks for observing the world around for inspirational design ideas. But make sure that the designs are simple, readable, and scalable.