This is from a few years back, but I still think about it frequently.
Me: So what are you looking for in a site?
Client: Team spirit, an elegant feel, excellence, and synergy. Really try to make it synergy.
I’m not a professional designer by any means but I enjoy doing graphic design a lot and can produce some decent stuff. I’ve been interning at a small NGO the past three months and was mainly designing posters, Facebook covers and flyers for their events (all on a crappy laptop with GIMP…). They often made me change things up a million times (“How would it look like if you put the logo like 3px to the left? Make it a tiny bit larger? Why didn’t you fill ALL the space up completely?”) or changed their mind about titles and info text the moment I finished etc. Because I still really like their cause and wanted to support them after my internship ended, I told them I could do some more stuff for them if I had time but they needed to be precise in telling me what they want because I don’t have the time to do round after round of revisions.
Client: Hey! We're doing a video series. Can you come up with something using our logo and the hashtag?
Me: I can do that but what do you need exactly? A logo, a poster, a flyer…? Do you have any idea of the direction you want? Can you provide me with all the info you have already? I need clear instructions on what you want.
Client: Oh, sure! We need branding. The hashtag is [x] and you need to include our logo. I hope that clears things up!
A phone call later it turned out what they wanted was their logos and the hashtag to appear in the upper right corner of the video… They didn’t even send me the video. Still not sure what they expected me to send back.
I recently agreed to do a logo for a new chocolate and soap company started by someone I knew. She gave me zero information on what she wanted. I designed 2 modern concepts that I thought fit her business.
Client: This is okay, but it needs to pop. Make it pop.
And no, she couldn't be more specific. It came out that her 12 year old grandchildren didn't like the designs.
Eventually after days she sent me a design she found on Google and wanted that. I sent her something similar that wouldn't fall under copyright.
Client: No. Just use what I sent you.
We were designing a COVID-related flyer for a client. In the background, there was a picture of a lady that was getting a temperature test.
Client: We like the background, but we don't like the image.
To be clear: the image WAS the background.