What is on the mind of graphic designer Aaaron James Draplin DDC? Unfiltered. Uncensored, straight talk and all heart.
05:30 On celebrity: The greatest people I’ve met, I could right up to them and talk to them. This is graphic design. I’m a working graphic designer. That’s what I did last night, that’s what I did this morning; I made things.
07:45 On merch: [Aaron] wants to have some kind of “safe” area, a neutral area, where people could come up, look at stuff, and it’s kind of a bridge so that they can have a conversation with [him].
16:31 On biters: You know how you beat these guys? You make more cool shit.
30:45 On getting clients: Show your work – People can only hire you if they can find you. Blogs, public speaking, etc.
31:10 Under promise and over deliver – the key in developing customer service and long-term relationships
35:28 On being expensive: If they can’t see the value in what you do, you might have to wait a little bit, and then get the guy that does.
38:35 Symmetry of logic: Check yourself before you wreck yourself
38:50 Value your work/self | Find better clients | Minimum level of engagement | It’s ok to do work for people you like for less $ | Respond with “It’s our policy”
42:42 On starting late: You can start at any time.
45:37 To his younger self: Learn to love this stuff, because when you love it, it doesn’t feel like a job. Some jobs are going to pay a lot, some jobs aren’t gonna pay shit. If you get stiffed, move onto the next damned thing, and they will reap what they sow on some karmic level.
Be really good with your taxes. That shit is un-fuck-with-able. And: You’re gonna have to work hard.
53:05 On pleasing clients: You have to be gracious and you have to work with it. First of all: Who are we making the things for? Is it for you, or is it for the client? Who’s paying the paycheck? It turns out that the client is paying the paycheck. If they want to change things, that is THEIR prerogative. Because after that, we’re just designing for our egos.
54:22 On personal projects: That’s why I continue to push myself to make little, goofy heart logos on Valentine’s Day because I get the buzz. I get the full buzz. I get to make it, I get to create it, I get to sketch it–you know? I get the buzz.
58:55 Make it so good no one will want to change it. Stick to the deadline and deliver. Do your job.
59:20 Where do you find inspiration for personal projects?
01:05:15 How do you feel about the “Big Man” label?
01:10:29 What is the key to staying true to yourself while still trying to make a living?
01:13:00 I’m gonna’ die any minute!
01:14:03 What’s a question no one has asked you, but should have?
01:19:20 How did you form your style?
01:27:20 Aaron Draplin reunites with his long lost son, Ben. And daughter, Molly. A background voice questions: “Are you everybody’s father?”
01:28:00 Rapid fire comments from Aaron
01:33:40 Sustaining members list: Thank you!
Want more Draplin? Listen to our podcast conversation w/ him:
Draplin: Pretty Much Everything Book
Draplin Design Company:
Adobe Creative Jam Los Angeles March 1, 2018
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