I was designing a female mascot.
Client: I want a mascot that appeals to both male AND female viewers!
I make a motherly figure.
Client: …. Obviously, she’s too fat. Can you make her look like a blonde Wonder Woman?
Against my better judgement, I do.
Client: Make her breasts bigger too! And let’s make those daisy dukes, and we’ll have her holding a shotgun!
"Nothing personal, but I don’t think you should be involved with the budgeting/financial part of it at all. Because you’re a designer. And a female. But that’s okay! There’s nothing wrong with being a female or a graphic designer."
I was editing a promo video for a race car website that featured shots of cars zooming around, drifting, splashing water, etc.
The largest production piece was a big race to the finish line, so I used a shot of the checkered flag to end the video before dissolving to the logo.
Client: I don’t know, do you think ending with the checkered flag is too gay?
Client: I mean, if it’s too gay we shouldn’t use it.
Me: I don’t think it’s too gay.
Client: But it’s the obvious choice, right? Despite being gay?
Client: Not that I have anything against gay people… wait, you’re not gay, are you? I guess you’d know best if you are.
"This company is growing like a gangbang!"
I was listening to the client thoughts on a few finalized TV spots via a conference call. The scripts were approved a month earlier and a member of the client’s staff was on-set during the shoot.
Client: I don’t know. I don’t really want to bring this up…
Client: Well, there’s just something about two guys standing at a bank counter…
Me: Two guys standing at a bank counter seems gay to you?
Me: I don’t see that.
Client: Well [as if this is a perfectly logical statement] you’re from the city, though. We’re from a smaller town. Of course you don’t see that.
"Oh no! Not this photo! That lady is the iStock whore!"
Client: I don’t know, none of these concepts say breast cancer to me.
Me: What do you mean?
Client: Well there’s nothing in them that lets me know that they’re ads for breast cancer. So they all seem pretty vague.
Me: Well the headline says the treatment is for breast cancer. Are you not satisfied with the images?
Client: Yeah. Like, there are no breasts in the concept. And there’s nothing pink.
Me: Is that really necessary for a breast cancer campaign?
Client: Oh no.
Me: Then –
Client: But it is necessary for a campaign aimed at women.
Client: I don’t like this leprechaun, he’s too scary. He should look less like a fictional character and more like the people that use our product.
Less than 10 minutes later…
Client: Do fairies have acorns for hats? That seems a little far-fetched. And this one has different wings, why are they different? Seems like sort of a queer fairy.
Client: Here’s the concept for the new logo we need…
Me: This just says “girly.” What do you mean by girly?
Client: I don’t know, flowers or something…
Me: Any preferences on font or color?
Client: I don’t know. Look, if I tell you anymore than I’ve already told you, I’ll be doing all the work.
Please note, we’re both women and this conversation made me very sad.
When designing for a magazine cover, the first design presented has a color scheme of blue, yellow, bright green, and red.
Client: (1) I don’t know, there’s something missing.
Client: (2) Yeah, it’s too “girly”.
Client: (1) Hey wait! Let’s add purple! Can you add purple to it?!
Clients: (2) Yes! It’s perfect! It definitely needed the purple.
Me: Should I take out one of the other colors so it isn’t rainbow?
Client: (1) No, no. It’s great the way it is. Thanks!
Client: (2) Glad we caught that fruity look before it got out of hand.
Client: (1) Totally.
Keep in mind that the cover was now blue, yellow, green, red, and purple. The only colour truly missing from the rainbow was orange.