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Jack of All Trades, Master of None?

Graphic Design (or any other art based service such as photography, interior design, etc.) is a study in balance. Designers must balance artistic ability with business ability. Designers must also keep designs fresh and compelling but simple and concise.

One grey area many self-employed designers will likely face is what type of services to offer. Now a competent designer will certainly have the principles of design squared sway but that does not mean he or she will be able to effectively (or competitively) design everything a client may need. So the question is, do you focus on one or two types of design, say just printed projects like business card, brochures, and posters or do you expand to cover websites, animation, and photography. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that more and more designers are mastering multiple skills such as print, web, photo, and multimedia.

The decision to focus your talent and energy on a select few jobs or expand to cover many is a personal and often complicated one. Consider the fact that most designers would rather turn out quality work from a few categories rather than mediocre ones from a multiple categories.  Also, bear in mind that you can always coordinate with other designers to cover different area of expertise. Of course, there are those out there who are perfectly capable of mastering all of these categories but just ask yourself  if you favor quality over quantity or vice versa. Spreading yourself too thin just for the sake of being able to add to your list of services is pointless if your work suffers.

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