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I wanted to continue on this thought about making ideas happen. I work in the motion graphics, motion design industry. I deal with clients, agencies, design studios, and production companies. Some have amazingly smart leaders that know what they want. But what if you are working for a client that doesn’t understand what it is that you do?

Most clients ask for assets without really understanding what they are asking for. Most of the time clients come to me asking for – an animation, a storyboards, or a style frame. But what they usually are asking for is for you to help them tell a story visually and in time. Other times they are really asking for is a concept, a way of thinking or approach to their problem. I think a lot of people confuse the two.

Most importantly they get caught up in the deliverable and don’t know what they’re really asking for. More likely than not they want one if not all of these things:

1. Understanding of the problem – What are we saying? Usually there is a message to be delivered.
2. Understand the clients approach to solving the problem, sometimes they won’t have an approach and the designer has to come up with one.
3. Art direction – visually solving the problem that will give the clients something unique yet reach the most people. It’s more than just style, it has to be the right style. It takes a designer to ask the right questions to find the right solutions to the problem.
4. Storytelling – the sequence in which the story should be told to be the most effective.
5. Story boarding –  This is what the client is asking for. A visual representation of the story.

If you end up working with clients that understand and value this process, work with them as much as possible. They will be good partners in the future. As for designers in the motion industry. Don’t let yourself get relegated into doing “frames” or ” just animation”. Know your value, and know what your are bringing to the table.


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