Q&A with Kristin Creative

We sent over a request for some Q&A with Kristin Cooknell, owner of Kristin Creative, and a graphic designer on our Market House team.  With growing trends rising this year in marketing and branding choices, and emphasis on influence graphic choices for civilian branding as well as consumer marketing, we wanted to hear her thoughts on the basics of design and trends!  Read more to find out where she suggests you start when making those design decisions!

A few examples of Kristin's design work featured above

What is your favorite trending design element?

So many! I always like the minimalistic designs. flat design. responsive logos!!! 

& gradient & bright and bold colors! 


What is your LEAST favorite trending design element?

papyrus? lol 


If you were to create a design board palette, where do you usually begin?

I go back to the original conversation or questionnaire from the client on what descriptive words they told me they would want their brand to represent and I find colors, photos, logos, patterns, etc to match those words.


When making branding and design choices for a new company, what are the first questions you ask clients?

  • what are they trying to accomplish?
  • why are they wanting to do that?
  • how do you want people to feel about your services?
  • who are you trying to attract?
  • how do you feel you stand out from others in your field?
  • examples of best and worst branding to them and why?
  • any details they cannot live without in their design, whether that be color, image, or whatever… and i do my best to incorporate it if it makes sense or offer alternative ideas to accomplish the same goal. 


How do you go about updating a branding look for a client that is already established?

Type is always the place I start! And I usually look to see if I can simplify what they have going already - I find a lot of companies can really just simplify the logo or marketing materials and quickly and almost effortlessly update the brand and feel instantly modern.


How often should company’s design be refreshed?

A few different reasons I think design should be refreshed:

  • If your company has changed direction, maybe significant new services, products, or company mission has been introduced, mergers, etc. Time for change.
  • if design trends have drastically changed, keep with the times!
  • If your brand has outdated design elements - think italicized fonts, gradients or bubbly text in your logo. 
  • Your brand is overly complicated (these are tough to integrate to web) if your logo is hard to decipher or difficult to read - its time.


What’s your advice to business owners designing their own marketing?

  • Whatever you choose to do - keep it consistent. Color theme, fonts, photo style, voice/tone. 
  • Don't try and be something you aren’t. Be yourself. 
  • Depending on how large your company is, I would consider using an expert in the field to get branding templates created and started for you to create a consistent theme that you can follow on your own. 


What elements of design out-date the fastest?

Bad fonts. overused stock photos. 


What’s the most important part of the design process for a client?

Communication! Give input! Be as clear and concise as possible with your designer. (We aren’t mind readers)

I like seeing, for example, websites the client likes and doesn't like if I'm the designer of their site. (and why they don't like certain elements is very important)


Additional Thoughts

To me - design is more about problem solving than picking colours and cool updated photos or making things look pretty- successful design communicates clearly a message. Or even better said by Steve Jobs...

"Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works." Steve Jobs