Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Working with clients


Developing Ideas and Design Concepts

with Craig Smallish

Video: Working with clients

Working with clients provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Craig Smallish as part of the Developing Ideas and Design Concepts
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 8m 45s
    1. Welcome
      1m 12s
    2. The importance of the original idea
      2m 50s
    3. What is concepting?
      2m 4s
    4. Demystifying "the process" in the creative process
      2m 39s
  2. 8m 48s
    1. Working with clients
      4m 14s
    2. Defining the project
      3m 0s
    3. Defining the project obstacles
      1m 34s
  3. 7m 44s
    1. Doing your research
      2m 22s
    2. Avoiding the pitfalls of mediocrity
      3m 28s
    3. What is a concept plan overview?
      1m 54s
  4. 11m 2s
    1. Using storytelling to determine core values
      3m 33s
    2. Using questions to distill the core values
      3m 46s
    3. Determining core values
      3m 43s
  5. 8m 59s
    1. Using the free-association process
      3m 39s
    2. Starting with seed phrases
      2m 55s
    3. Using the power of collaboration to increase ideas
      2m 25s
  6. 9m 48s
    1. Honing your ideas
      4m 20s
    2. Reviewing your descriptive words and sketches to find the best ideas
      2m 29s
    3. Experimenting with your ideas
      2m 59s
  7. 8m 2s
    1. Maintaining a diversity of ideas
      1m 0s
    2. Using search engines to fuel ideas
      4m 50s
    3. The rough concept retrospect
      2m 12s
  8. 9m 48s
    1. Defining the rough sketch
      4m 34s
    2. Visually defining your ideas
      2m 57s
    3. The strength of iteration
      2m 17s
  9. 5m 16s
    1. What is 180-degree thinking?
      2m 46s
    2. Demonstrating the approach
      2m 30s
  10. 9m 29s
    1. Defining the revised sketch
      3m 25s
    2. Demonstrating the approach
      3m 46s
    3. The importance of exploring variation (perspective, media selection, and stylistic approaches)
      2m 18s
  11. 6m 36s
    1. Defining the refined sketch
      2m 23s
    2. Demonstrating the concern for detail
      4m 13s
  12. 5m 3s
    1. Revealing the final concept "comp" solution
      3m 19s
    2. Reflecting on the process path
      1m 44s

please wait ...
Working with clients
Video Duration: 4m 14s1h 39m Appropriate for all Aug 16, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Working with clients provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Craig Smallish as part of the Developing Ideas and Design Concepts

View Course Description

After landing a client, the designer's first chore is to communicate and develop the initial idea, whether it's a storyboard for a film or ad, or a multifaceted marketing campaign for a product or service. Learn how to transform a client's request into a presentable concept in this course. Craig Smallish walks through the development process for various creative scenarios, from assessing the client and the scope of the job to free-associating and sketching your ideas. Learn to create descriptive copy to accompany your visuals and create iteration after iteration of your design. Finally, Craig shows how to choose your strongest idea through a process of refinement.

Topics include:
  • What is concepting?
  • Working with clients
  • Doing your research
  • Determining the core values of a product or service
  • Using free association
  • Building the written descriptives
  • Using search engines to fuel ideas
  • Flipping your ideas 180 degrees
  • Creating a rough sketch
  • Defining the refined sketch
Craig Smallish

Working with clients

Every project has a client, and the experience of working with them can range from tremendous to torturous. Either way, it's important to keep in mind that the client can be one of your best resources. By having a solid grasp of who your client is and what they are trying to achieve, you accomplish two things. First, it'll give you a solid foundation to build your creative process upon. Secondly, your level of consideration and thoughtful inquiry is likely to gain the client's respect, and with that respect comes trust.

As we proceed through these concept-building and sketching lessons, we'll be working with our client KinetECO to promote their new mini solar panel. Now, we may have a cursory knowledge of what solar power can provide, but cursory just won't cut it. We really need to dig in and get a firm grasp on exactly who KinetECO is, and what this handy little device is really all about. We can start by checking existing resources, such as websites, press articles, online testimonials, print brochures, anything relative to your client that we can lay our hands on.

Beyond that, obtaining a client brief is our next major step. The client brief is our primary resource for a wide array of client rich information designed to shed as much light on who your client is, what they do, and what they're expecting. It's essential that the brief is completed at the beginning of every client creative relationship. While working up the brief, it's almost always best to meet with the client in person as insight through verbal response and body language can be telling.

If possible, meet at the client's place of business. Getting a feel for their work space can add valuable insight. If meeting in person isn't an option, Skye, Hangout, and other virtual meeting places are very useful. From the beginning, consider that every observation, thought, or idea which comes to mind is important. Note sketching can be invaluable during the meeting so be sure to jot everything down as it may have a role to play somewhere down the line.

Although well composed briefs should identify the client's mission, goals, and objectives, taking the inquiry a step further on a more esoteric level can sometimes offer up a treasure of information that could prove useful later on in the concept development process. For instance, more thought provoking questions should be considered such as list the three most memorable events in your organization's history, identify some missteps that your organization may have made and what was learned.

List the three greatest achievements in your organizations history. Write a brief testimonial for your own organization and product offering. List some of the best decisions that had the most significant effect on your organization. And finally, offer three words which you feel best describe your organization. Questions like this can help a creative get a far better feel for who their client is. Our client reps at KinetECO completed this brief, which outlines various goals and objectives.

But we also asked some more in depth questions. And their response has given us information we'll likely find very useful when we begin the concept development process. Importantly, the information obtained in the brief shouldn't necessarily drive the project like a rudder as much as function as a guiding compass, making certain we're staying on course. Gaining a thorough knowledge of your client's needs and expectations and working together with them to complete the client brief will establish a solid foundation of trust.

Trust will play a big role when we convince the client that our creative approach is a very best way to go.

There are currently no FAQs about Developing Ideas and Design Concepts.

Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Developing Ideas and Design Concepts.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


Upgrade to View Courses Offline


With our new Desktop App, Annual Premium Members can download courses for Internet-free viewing.

Upgrade Now

After upgrading, download Desktop App Here.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Start your FREE 10-day trial

Begin learning software, business, and creative skills—anytime,
anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts. provides
Unlimited access to over 4,000 courses—more than 100,000 video tutorials
Expert-led instruction
On-the-go learning. Watch from your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Switch back and forth as you choose.
Start Your FREE Trial Now

A trusted source for knowledge.


We provide training to more than 4 million people, and our members tell us that helps them stay ahead of software updates, pick up brand-new skills, switch careers, land promotions, and explore new hobbies. What can we help you do?

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.