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The Savvy Designer's Guide to Success: Ideas and Tactics for a Killer Career Paperback – December, 2004

10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jeff Fisher is very knowledgable in design career advice. He runs his own business, focusing on identity designs, and has received nearly 400 awards for his work. He is a frequent contributor to top industry magazines.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: How Design Books (December 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1581804806
  • ISBN-13: 978-1581804805
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,141,757 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jeff Fisher, author of "Identity Crisis!: 50 redesigns that transformed stale identities into successful brands" (HOW Books, 2007), is the Engineer of Creative Identity for the Portland-based firm Jeff Fisher LogoMotives. A 30-year design veteran, he has been honored with over 600 regional, national and international design awards and is featured in over 160 books about logos, the design business, and small business marketing. His first book, "The Savvy Designer's Guide to Success" was released in 2004 and has been reissued as a PDF on CD from Other books are currently in the works.

Fisher has served on the HOW Design Conference Advisory Council, HOW Magazine Editorial Advisory Board, and UCDA Designer Magazine Editorial Advisory Board. The designer also writes for HOW Magazine, other industry publications, and many webzines and blogs. In addition, Fisher is a nationally-recognized speaker, making numerous presentations each year to design organizations, design schools, universities and business groups. Graphic Design USA magazine recently named Jeff Fisher one of the design industry "People to Watch" for 2009.

Toots Caboose, the author's alter ego, is a member of the Portland Rose Festival Character Clown Corps.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Danita Reynolds on January 10, 2005
Format: Paperback
Jeff Fisher's book The Savvy Designer's Guide to Success: Ideas and Tactics for a Killer Career is a must have for anyone interested in or involved in the Graphic Design field.

This 192 page book is jam packed with a wealth of solid, valuable experiences from designers who have been-there and done-it.

Jeff's witty and bluntly honest writing brings you through chapters on advice about building a foundation for your career, what types of education paths to walk, getting more than your foot in the door, the do's and don'ts and saving your your rear end, communication and the why of it, presenting a professional presence, the value of your time and pricing it, working with contracts and building business support relationships, promoting and tooting your horn, recognizing when it isn't fun any more and what to do about it, and last but not least social responsibility, connecting with the community and helping those within the ranks in the graphic design field.

I highly recommend adding this book to your Graphic Design library. It certainly is a great resource that can help you create a killer career in Graphic Design. I own a good many books on Graphic Design and I have found Jeff Fisher's book one of the best I have bought!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dan Antonelli on January 22, 2005
Format: Paperback
Jeff's book is an inspiring masterpiece for all designers seeking to elevate their game, and their business. He explores the many pitfalls to avoid, and provides concrete examples on how to be not only a better designer, but better business person as well.

Finally, a comprehensive book that explore the design business - from the perspective of a true leader in the field. Jeff really did his homework on this book -- the research is extensive - and the examples from other designers provide us with many different viewpoints on running successful design businesses.

Jeff's success in running his business is well known throughout the globe - now he shares that success with others, so that they can learn from one of the best in the field.

A must read for every independent designer.

--- Dan Antonelli
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Spencer M. Hall on December 30, 2005
Format: Paperback
I was browsing the graphic design section of Barnes & Noble the other day looking for a different book on the same topic. I couldn't find the title that I was looking for, so I picked this one up, grabbed a cup of coffee, and started leafing through it. I read a few bits of the beginning chapter, where Fisher details the advantages and disadvantages of different traditional and not-so-traditional educational paths for would-be designers. As a freshman at a liberal arts college majoring in graphic design, I was immediately intrigued. I temporarily forgot about the book I had been looking for and bought this one instead. As a testament to how great this book is- I finished it in just 2 days. In fact this is one of the few books where I can honestly say I "couldn't put it down." Fisher writes in an informal, easy to read style. His approach to giving advice is very open-minded but very no-nonsense and practical at the same time. Most importantly, this book covers it all: everything from the initial education of the designer, to starting out in the industry, to self-promotion, legal issues, and dealing with one's mistakes and screw ups. Throughout the book Fisher draws on the experience of nearly 100 designers and deign firm owners and the pages of this book are dripping with references to other books, magazines, and great online resources for designers and other creative professionals. This book gave me some great insights on getting started as a graphic designer and has me even more excited about my career. Five stars, without question!
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Sean ODWYER on December 3, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My copy of Jeff's book arrived today. I have work to do but I can't put it down. It's excellent.

I started just flicking through the last couple of chapters (about pricing and self promotion) and my afternoon went down in flames.

I've only read three chapters but they were worth several times the cost of the book - plus a pot of gold dust.

I'm reminded of Steven Wright's joke: I like to read books by starting in the middle because then, if I enjoy a book, there's always more.

Not only is it well written with a load of useful information, funny quotes, and input from other designers, but apparenly it's a mood enhancer too. I've been feeling kinda blech all week and now I'm feeling inspired.

Good job!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dagmar on March 24, 2006
Format: Paperback
Well, here I was, too distracted to write a proper raving review because I was busy absorbing in all of the wonderful, easy to follow and sometimes downright humorous advice from a long awaited book that is refreshingly geared towards design professionals of any level. Novices will definitely appreciate the start-up tips from the perspectives of a virtual plethora of experienced design communicators from all over. More experienced designers will find helpful suggestions on effectively managing and growing their career. And of course, what good resource is complete without detailing some very useful advice about avoiding pitfalls and other related issues along the way.

With an abundance of references and resources that include contracts, networking, self promotion and more importantly, a guide on how to realistically rate your services, The Savvy Designer's Guide To Success delivers on an even more important level; raising one's awareness on the often underrated value of the Creative Communications Designer.
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