On a nice early summer morning, eleven years ago, an art curator parked his old green Jaguar in front of the printing company. It was clear from the beginning that he loved the nice things. With him, a very young graphic designer, at the beginning of his career. Both were excited about printing a new art catalogue for an incoming exhibition. The curator wanted the young graphic designer with him on this project. He believed in his skills. A nice opportunity.
One year later, the curator set up an important agreement with a big publisher and founded a new art publishing company. He didn’t want to create books. He wanted to create great and revolutionary books. For that reason, he called the young graphic designer and gave him the role of art director. Maybe it was a bet, considering other full experienced designers available in this moment for this job. But a winning bet.
Both remembered positively the printing process one year before and chose to begin this new challenge with that same printer. Another winning bet.
After 10 years and a million of books printed, the team is still together.
What is the secret behind this successful collaboration?
What made and still makes the difference?
First at all, we can tell you that unfortunately in the world there are few examples of that. Often the publishers don’t understand the importance of the team-working. They treat the designers or the printers as suppliers, not as partners. This conduct puts all the part involved in a project in a negative circle:
- The publisher wants to be the project head, he wants to take all the decisions. The budget is often the only important point. No matter what.
- The designer can not be creative as he wants. He has to make compromised choices, he will be then frustrated and not satisfied
- The printer becomes just an ‘executor’, as he is a spoon producer. He must offer the lower price, be fast and above all be quiet.
Is that what do you want?
What is important to us is to create a win-win situation. If you liked the little story which I told you at the beginning of the post, you have to know that it’s all about long-term collaboration. Partnership, not supply. What makes this kind of collaboration so successful?
- Trust. Every part involved in the project completely trusts the others. No lies to have more power in the business relationship.
- Dialogue. There is a continuous and profitable discussion between the parts in order to find the better solution for every aspect: editorial, artistic and technical.
- Knowledge. If everyone participating in a project shares his knowledge, everything can work better. And so again.
This is the only solution to achieve the best final result, not just once, but for many times.
That guarantees to have publications exactly as you want.