Client: We would love to work with you and love your style and previous designs!
They handed me a detailed brief and I was confident I could pull off a design they love. I got to work and created some initial sketches for feedback.
Client: So...we looked at your designs and we just don't like them.
Me: OK, sorry we seem to have missed the mark here - these designs were intended as a starting point to get a feel for style and layout. Could give me some feedback about what you did/didn't like about them> This will allow me to improve on the design and develop it into something you will love.
Client: We love the page with the full photo but don't want anything photo-heavy so don't use any photos here. We want it to look clean and expensive but can you add more text onto the second page to fill the space? But don't listen to me, you're the designer. Also can you make it look like the attached?
They had attached an INCREDIBLY similar brochure design to the ones I did for them and some VERY detailed feedback about what they want - this time I was sure I'd get it right.
Client: Yeah, we don't like these designs either - can we put this job on hold?
I understand sometimes it just doesn't work out - but it doesn't hurt less! Still, at least I filled out my "unclear feedback" bingo card.