Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. Logo design and branding for consumer products, especially food & wine, design and illustrations for product packaging and promotional materials. Many projects involve marketing materials, including brochures, newsletters, signage and trade show materials. And, the design needed for identity materials that span all the company's materials for print and web, as well as creating complete file transfers for advertising media and architectural graphics for way-finding and signage programs.
Q. Describe three recent jobs you've completed.
A. 1) Logo design and brand packaging for Healdsburg Chocolate Company, labels and signage.
2) Logo design for AoB Plants, on-line botanical journal, trade show materials, letterhead, business cards, e-newsletter components.
3) Logo & brand, label packaging for Soda Botanica, business cards, signage.
4) Logo and website, illustrations, animation, e-newsletters for Blair & Jerry's Wine Shop.
5) Wine label and logo design for Mueller Winery with Tasting Room in Heladsburg, CA.
6) Logo designs and branding for 4 separate garden products offered by Soiland Co., Inc. Soil bag packaging, advertising, T-shirt design, promotion materials.
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A. Have a list of the type of marketing goals that will be addressed by the graphic communication project. Decide on a ballpark budget for the project. Allow adequate time for development, feed-back and client meetings.
Q. If you were a customer, what do you wish you knew about your trade? Any inside secrets to share?
A. How does the design process work, how much does it cost, what am I getting for the amount spent? What type of mock-ups will I be seeing? What is the information that i need to supply to the designer?
Q. What questions should a consumer ask to hire the right service professional?
A. Can I see samples of your work? How long have you been doing graphic design communication? What are your areas of expertise?
Q. What important information should buyers have thought through before seeking you out?
A. Clients should conside the budget for the project and who the audience is for the service or product—it is important to know what are the goals of the delieverables for the project. Another important thing to consider is the time required for development of the concepts and the time required for printing and/or posting to the internet. It pays to plan ahead, giving adequate space and time for projects to be completed.
Q. Why does your work stand out from others who do what you do?
A. It is unique, custom-designed work, not copied or derived from clip art. The graphic design samples I provide indicate the level of thought and experience that I bring to various projects. Many of my logo designs have stood the test of time, retaining their integrity for 10-20 years. My work is distinctive and invites the viewer into the world behind the logos and brand identity— it creates more sales and more business for my clients in general. Positive responses from clients and the general public let me know that I have been successful. My company's reputation is important and I, as the owner, stand behind the work to guarantee its excellence.
Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. The thing I like most about my job is designing concepts and solving visual problems. I like to develop lasting, memorable work that gives my clients an advantage in the marketplace. I truly love the creative process and enjoy the interaction with my clients. I effectively become an important strategic partner in their marketing efforts. I provide insightful thinking that they don't often find elsewhere. What I do is more that just using a set of hands to execute an idea... I am engaging my mind and heart all the way through the process, including the critical final steps of production, manufacturing, programming, etc., to bring their project to fruition. I appreciate that my clients continue to depend on my expertise as an art director and designer.
Q. What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A. Q: What does it cost?
A: Depends on the complexity of the project
Q. Do you have a favorite story from your work?
A. Naming a new brand for Tierra Divina Vineyards while on a kayak trip... it all happened quite by accident, after a couple of hours of kayaking and shouting out various possibilities to each other over the distances between our boats while we rowed on Tomales Bay. At the end of the trip, as we were about to take out our kayaks, I called over to the winemaker, "Non vale la pena!" referring to the process of trying to find a name for the new brand. He started shouting, "That's it! That's It!" "What," I asked quizzically, "you mean, 'non vale la pena?'" "No, no," he said, "VALE la pena! It's WORTH the effort!" So the brand name was born, "Vale la Pena" is now the name of a wonderful Malbec grown in Argentina for Tierra Divina Vineyards. For a look at the final versions of the label go to: http://buttittsdesign.blogspot.com/?spref=tw
Q. What do you wish customers knew about you or your profession?
A. How difficult it really is... creating work that is functional as well as beautiful and answers all the needs of marketing, identity, branding, etc.! In a cost-effective way.
Training that is essential for sound graphic design is general overlooked by many in the profession, however I believe it is important to strive for the most effective graphic communication possible and provide clients with optimum results within limited resources. I provide my clients with thoughtful, effective graphic solutions that are hard to find elsewhere. I often surprise my clients with the caliber of my work, usually exceeding their expectations.
Q. Do you do any sort of continuing education to stay up on the latest developments in your field?
A. I am always delving into the latest methods and tools to make the manifestation of a creative ideas economically sound. Staying up on the latest software and developing or enhancing skills for the ever-changing programming languages and tools for creating website. Also, it furthers my thinking and visual resources to study the past—art history, architecture, letterpress printing, book binding, paper-making, textural and sculptural effects, surface design, fabrics, etc. The natural world, too, is a great inspiration. There is so much to see and appreciate even on a simple walk.
Q. What are you currently working on improving?
A. Currently working on improving and updating the Buttitta Design website: www.buttittadesign.com. I am taking advantage of addition development courses to improve knowledge and expertise in web design and programming. I am discovering more ways to help my clients, from trade show to e-newsletters, and from signage to developing promotional materials. I have been doing research on historical references for illustrations, including botanical graphics and lettering arts. I have also been studying foreign languages to increase my understanding and usage of written communications.