One of my specialties is logo design. I have a lot of training and experience in it, and it's a very satisfying way to collaborate with a business owner. As I'm currently working on one, it occurred to me to post about some of my process in doing the work.
I get a lot of questions about what I charge for a logo. Really, there's no one answer for that. I don't like to work hourly. I feel that can add costs for my client that they don't anticipate, and it also shortchanges me if my training makes it so I can shortcut a lot of things doing the work that much more quickly. If you think that's unfair of me, think about it this way: I've been designing for over a decade at this point, and I spent tens of thousands of dollars and innumerable hours learning how to do this quicker and better. If I can design your logo in a tenth the time that you can, I deserve to be paid for that ability at a rate that is reasonable given my skill and training.
But I digress. I prefer to work with my client within their budget. So, if a client has an interesting to me project but doesn't have much budget, I'll probably take on the project anyway. It might take me longer as I'll need to fit it in around my other, more well-paying work, just to get the bills paid, but I'll give it the same attention and effort as any client's work gets. This holistic approach allows me to do work for a wider variety of clients and keep things fresher.
I also do some barter and energy-exchange. For example, I'm currently working on a logo for a jewelry designer. She has a piece I like in her inventory, so we're trading for some of my fee. If I work with a photographer, I might barter for some product photography. You get the idea. I generally won't barter more than half of my fee, but it's a way to make a project fit into someone's budget.
Cat Castells is a graphic artist and designer living in Hunterdon County, NJ. A Parsons graduate, she is a freelancer who works for others and develops her own products as well. This blog was started out of a desire to help out fellow graphic designers who might be looking to do some mockups.