All tomorrow’s parties

I suppose I could start this entry with the immortal weblog phrase “Nothing much happening today”, but I sooner give you a link to The Apathetic Online Journal Entry Generator, another highly amusing toy from The Brunching Shuttlecocks, a site I’d forgetten about recently until amending my Slashdot preferences recently. So that’s worth the entry price alone.

The title is a reference to the William Gibson book I’ve just finished (re)reading, All Tomorrow’s Parties. Take a look at his website – actually quite interesting, from the brief look I’ve had at it – I’ll need to go back later.

I’ve no idea what I was originally going to write here – now I want to pose a question. When you’re producing something visual for other people (website, animation, presentation, document) obviously in most cases they’ll give you some form of brief, a description of what they’re looking for. Sometimes they have a specific look/concept in mind, sometimes they just want “something nice”, “something suitable” or my favourite, “something whizzy”. So you go away and you do some work and you come back to them and you have a conversation like

you: What do you think?
them: That’s brilliant. Really good – I love it
you: *chuffed*
them: But…
you: What?
them: Can we have it in purple? And put the text in 47 point comic sans? And move this here, and have this explode, and make this bit flash yellow & green?
you: Errr…*shite*…that’s er…not really suitable…

Sound familiar to anyone. The biggest difficulty comes when, after that last line, you try to persuade them that it would look bloody stupid, but they’re certain that’s how it must look. So now, you have to deliberately produce something you think is a disaster zone. How do you cope?