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What to charge for designing a Catalogue

Discussion in 'General Business Forum:' started by web branding, May 24, 2010.

  1. web branding

    web branding Junior Member

    Hi All,

    Can anyone help out on this...
    We're currently a new web design company, just getting our first few jobs in.

    We have a client who wants us to do their website but also designing a catalogue for them has been mentioned. I am confident this won't hold any great design problems but not too sure what price we should be asking. The catalogue will be for ladies garments and will consist of the following:

    • Design and Artwork of a high quality A5+ (Glamour Magazine size) catalogue.
    • 48 - 52 pages
    • Approximately 125 products
    • 2-3 products per page (4-6 products per spread)

    Phoned round couple of Catalogue companies but the prices vary an extreme amount. I would like to get as many different opinions on a price (just for design) and for this they'll provide all photos from photo shoot thats happening next week.

    Look forward to your response, thanks :)
  2. Hi there,

    Are you advertising this job or just asking a question? If you are advertising it then this is the right place, if you just want our opinions then it will probably need to be moved.

    If you are advertising this job and looking for an artworker then I can certainly help you out, I specialise in print design. PM me and I shall send you some work samples and an estimate.

    In terms of how to estimate for a job like this (especially with a fairly large amount of images) the important thing to do is to break the project down into components, eg:
    - Conceptalising the design and layout (creative choices like typography, grid etc)
    - Image treatment (cropping, deep etching, resizing etc etc)
    - The physical layout and artworking for the project
    - the inevitable rounds of amends (DO NOT provide unlimited revisions)
    - Getting it all nicely wrapped up for print

    You should already have an idea of how much you need to make from each hour you work on a project so that you can come out with some sort of a profit. Take that hourly rate and estimate how many hours it will take you to do each of the above things, allowing a few hours for the amends and thats your price.

    Long story short, everyone has different opinions on what this project will cost so I am not going to commit to a price here in an open forume cos I believe you must charge what you need to charge depending on your circumstances and costs.

    Good luck with the project and let me know if you want a specialised print designer! ;-)


  3. web branding

    web branding Junior Member

    Hi Pete,

    No not advertising this as a job but just getting different opinions,

    Thats really helpful information thanks, especially specifying a number of amendments.
    I suppose its just getting to a stage with a project of this size to best predict how long the overall design will take?

    My work rate does tend to vary from day to day and it would be the first time doing a catalogue, done a number of brochures but it's a slightly different skill.

    Do you know of any helpful sites regarding your expertise of Publication Design?
    Would be most useful,

    Thanks again, Rob
  4. Hi Rob,

    Ok I see now.

    There are sites out there but they all seem to have generic info, I would go down to your local book shop and buy books on publication design etc, there are many good ones.

    I also wouldn't get hung up on worrying that brochure design is somehow a different "skill", we are not talking about html and css or coding which in my mind are very different.

    Print design is pretty clear cut and there are basics like good use of grids and typography that should see you through any print project. Use your instincts, take the style of the catalog from your client's look and feel (and the brief) and have a book to hand of you get seriously stuck.

    Also using proper layout software is a must of course (InDesign or Quark) as this is a multipage document.

    Good luck with the project!
  5. web branding

    web branding Junior Member

    Thats great thanks Pete,

    Doing bit of research at the moment into womans mags, well giving my other half an excuse to buy more mags and order catalogues! Seems it is a slightly different art tho, most of my experience is we design. I'm sure it'll be fine.

    I'll be using Illustrator so as you say handy for grids and rulers. Also didn't realise illustrator was multipage doc, i knew in design was...handy to know , think i'll google into that, prob a def for a catalogue!

    Thanks again, cheers Rob
  6. Greg

    Greg Active Member

    Hi Rob,

    I don't think anyone has said Illustrator is suitable for mulitpage documents, have they?
    Personally I wouldn't try to design a magazine/catalogue layout in anything other than InDesign or Quark as Peter mentioned. Also worth spending some time getting used to Master page layouts and how they can effectively be used, will save you a lot of time in the long-run.

    Good luck with it :)
  7. Becky

    Becky Member

    You *could* use Illustrator's (cs4/5) multiple artboards, if you're masochistic, or it's a smaller document I suspect.

    But as you said, InDesign or Quark would make things so much easier with master pages and object/paragraph styles for overall consistency and ease of editing
  8. rossnorthernunion

    rossnorthernunion Senior Member

    Just a couple of points from my print experience.

    • use InDesign or Quark only - its what the programmes are made for

    • A lot of your time (i'm guessing) will be cropping and comping the photoshoot images (125 times xx mins) bear this in mind.

    • Remember to plan it out at every stage and agree things constantly with the client.

    • Is all copy being provided by a real copywriter? Or by the client themselves?

    • Do you have a real workable schedule for all parties to keep to?

    • Whatever time you think it's going to take - double it.

    • Whatever price you think it's going to cost - double it.

    • Do you have a deadline?

    Lots of jobs like this sound easy and in fact turn out to be an arse...
  9. ralphsaunders

    ralphsaunders Senior Member

    A catalogue would be my worst nightmare. Very repetitive work.
  10. Yes, what everyone said! :)

    Illu is certainly not my first choice for multipage docs and multiple artboards were only implemented in CS4 which may be a clue to that...

    It may be repetitive work but thats where I can come in hehe *punt*
  11. Becky

    Becky Member

    I actually don't mind repetitive stuff such as catalogues. I get some kind of sick enjoyment from setting up styles and the consistency :(
  12. Amen to that Becky! I love to set up a style and then watch it executed across a long document. Its why I love print design so much! :)

    I suppose some would see me more of an artworker than a designer...but I think I strike a nice balance between the creative stuff and the grunt work!
  13. web branding

    web branding Junior Member

    Thanks all some real great advice there,
    Ross I can see how many of your points ring true, I can see the process dragging on longer than first expected. A previous point that was made earlier is also sticking in my mind from Peter, saying to NOT provide unlimited revisions.
    I think if I can put a strong and consistent style together using Master pages as a firm starting block it should nicely fall into place...or so the theory goes!!

    To your question Ross, I'm glad you've brought things up like copyrighting because up to now that hasn't been talked over with the client...

    Thanks all again...keep you posted!
  14. Hi Rob,

    Usually what I do is get the client to do 99% of their copywriting and then I can help them polish it at the end (as part of the fee). Ideally copy should be finalised BEFORE the layout begins but of course that almost never happens...ever...

    I have been caught out a few times with clients who accept a quote and then the next thing you know you are onto proof number 20 with no end in site. A past client of mine produced academic journals and decided that they wanted to only proof the text once it had be laid-out...the result was marked up PDFs that contained more than 600 changes, the whole thing was just highlights- a nightmare if you don't put some sort of a limit onto the changes.

    The way I would approach this job is to conceptualise a master style and then format a few pages showing the style in action, get it approved by the client and the go hell for leather in formatting the rest of the document. In theory this will eliminate major changes popping up at the very end of the project which will mean you have to go back and do it all again.

    I offer an initial concept (and everything that comes with it), the formatting and layout etc of the actual document, and then 2 further proofs as part of my initial quote. Any proofs past that are charged by the hour. Granted, this approach does turn many potential clients off but it means you do protect yourself.

    Let us know how it goes! :)


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