Regardless of whether you are a graphic designer or business executive, paying attention to what you are doing is imperative to success. The smallest mistake, even an innocent typo, can cost a lot of money and be cause for quite a bit of embarrassment. With the tools we have at hand, there are some mistakes that just shouldn’t ever happen.
1. THAT DOESN’T LOOK RIGHT
One way to avoid embarrassing mistakes that could follow you around and make you look more ridiculous than professional is to have someone else look at what you are doing. The more eyes, the better. This is especially important to graphic designers who may no longer be able to “see” things that aren’t right after staring at a project for too many days in a row.
For example, check out the accidentally conjoined father and daughter (click to view larger). There’s a whole slew of visual disasters here at PSD: PhotoShop Disasters.
2. SPELL CHECK, SPELL CHECK, SPELL CHECK!
Considering how every program on a computer nowadays has some form of spell check built in, you should really take advantage of it. The “I’m not good with spelling/grammar” excuse no longer cuts it when all you have to do is run what you’ve typed through the spellchecker and voila! Something intelligible comes out on the other end.
Granted, the spell check function can only take you so far. It’s probably best to have someone decent at spelling and grammar take a look at any important documents… or body art…
See more body art fails here: http://ugliesttattoos.failblog.org
3. TRIPLE CHECK IT. NO, REALLY.
So you’ve run spell check, looked over everything, and had a friend look at it. Think you’re finished? You really might want to consider looking over everything one more time. Read your sentences backwards to catch spelling errors, look at photos extra carefully, go over the math using a calculator.
I mean, NASA is full of really smart people, but look what happened to the Mars orbiter when someone forgot to convert the feet over to meters (what happened was a $125 million piece of equipment missing its mark and presumably traveling into Mars’ atmosphere, where it burned up).
Moral of the story? Pay attention! You may be trying to impress a client, land a new job, or simply not screw up… attention to detail will help you avoid mistakes, impress the people who matter, and make clients grateful to have your eyes catching mistakes.