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Graphic Designer's Guide to Pricing, Estimating & Budgeting Revised Edition Paperback – July 1, 2001

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About the Author

Theo Stephan Williams is the founder of Real Art Design Group, Inc., an award-winning, full-service graphic firm whose international client-base includes Universal Studios Hollywood, the Walt Disney Company, and Mead Corporation. The author of The Streetwise Guide to Freelance Graphic Design and Illustration (1998, Northlight, ISBN 0891348018), she has taught college courses in graphic design theory and frequently speaks at conferences and seminars about pricing and budgeting techniques and handling communication challenges in the creative industry. She lives in Los Alamos, California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Allworth Press; 1st edition (July 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1581150989
  • ISBN-13: 978-1581150988
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,520,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By energuy on April 29, 2004
Format: Paperback
The title doesn't really describe this book. Two of the 14 chapters pertain to pricing and estimates, but don't expect a GAG PEG-style list of suggested numbers. In fact, actual fees are seldom mentioned.
This book mostly covers the business of graphic design, from hiring to self promo to client relations. If you're getting the Creative Business newsletter, you're already getting this information. If not, this is a practical guide. Williams is experienced, and her advice makes good sense. Her writing style is casual, and the book is a quick read.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Alden Kroll on September 8, 2002
Format: Paperback
Of all the books in my business/design library, I think this one has proven to be the most valuable. While I am not quite to the point where I can reasonably charge some of the prices that Theo recommends, I still feel like this book is a great resource for much of the business of design. If anything, I think this book does a good job of building confidence in pricing and business as a whole. The writing style is very smooth and easy to follow, and her personal accounts help tie in real-world experiences to justify her recommendations.
Theo Williams also does a pretty good job of covering a broader sense of project management and client relations, though not in too great of detail (which is okay, as that is not the point of the book). The end of the book provides us with some rough business forms (invoices, estimates, etc.) which I also found greatly helpful.
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants a better grasp on how to go about figuring out prices for design projects.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amanda Ko on September 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
I have been operating a freelance graphic-design business on a casual basis for over 10 year and have just recently decided to take it to a more professional level. I purchased this book because I thought it would help me streamline my billing system and teach me something I didn't already know. Unfortunately, I found that this book was much more chatty than informative and that the information was a bit too vague. It would have also helped if the forms at the back of the book were more fully discussed in the book itself.

While I found it interesting and somewhat insightful to read about the author's opinions and experience (which is credible), I did not feel that I gained much new insight from the book. Another book that I found more pragmatic and useful was Cameron Foote's "The Business Side of Creativity". Even though that book covers all aspects of running a graphic design business, it also includes a section on billing with advice that is both practical and concrete (including how to deal with clients who are price-sensitive in an assertive manner). While this book may help someone who is completely new at billing clients for graphic-design services, I personally gained more from Foote's book than this one.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Avatar Crash on May 23, 2007
Format: Paperback
In straight-forward, witty and very business-wise language, Theo Stephan Williams lays it all on the line for anyone in or thinking of getting in the design business. She explains exactly how to negotiate, what to say and how to actually make a profit. While all other books dance around the subject of money, she just lays it on the table, giving hourly rates and project break-downs and without having to feel bad justifying prices that will keep you in business, I finally realize that it is a right to make a profit out of what we do.

For ten years I've been operating exactly like the kinds of people Theo knows inside out - thinking that breaking even is good enough, afraid to raise prices for fear of losing work. All that gets, she explains, is a huge, unprofitable client base, all making demands and not paying a good price for the services they receive. Theo provides clear, logical, sensible and highly convincing arguments to turn your business around and make a real success of it, as she has done of hers.

Read it and join the ranks of enlightened designers and design firms who actually make great money out of doing great work.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Aaron in Portland on December 12, 2006
Format: Paperback
Theo's writing style is lively and at times, entertaining. The multimedia section is starting to show its age, but this is still a very worthwhile read.
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