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I have a dilemma(hope I spelled correctly). I am startinng a graphic t-shirt business for women and I wanted to know is it better to go with a local graphic designer for your designs or use someone over the internet. I am worried about someone stealing my designs if I use someone over the internet. I can't seem to find a good graphic designer locally here in charlotte north carolina who understands my concept for my business and how I want my designs. I could really use some help on this because I have alot of ideas, I just need someone to bring them to life? thanks
 

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It really all depends on the designer you find. If I were to use a designer from the internet I would make sure to have a signed contract stating your terms and ownership of the design. Also I am sure you can ask for references of what they have done, and any good designer would be glad to supply this to you. There are alot of really great designers online as well as off. Also another good place to check is your local college or art school, and see if you can find a talented student. Alot of them will do the work for a fair price to build their portfolio. There are many options out there for finding talented designers :) Also If you use the search function at the top of this page, and put something like how to find a designer in, you will find a ton of threads, with great advice. Hope this helps some.
 

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I recently put an ad in craigslist for a freelance designer. The post was free, and i got alot of hits. Now i just need to sort through and figure out who is going to be most reliable and trustworthy. Because of that, I prefer someone local. But, i am flexible and i will allow them to submit artwork via email. I also have a work for hire contract signed and proof of ID and payment via paypal. It makes it fair for both parties!
 

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call me old fashioned (ive been called much worse) but I try to use someone local whenever I can. It means you can sit down with them and get more achieved, and twist their arm behind their back if need be (I think that should be a metaphor...). Mind you if you have tried local and they don't seem to understand your concept, then you will have to bite the bullet (again, metaphorically) and get on the net. OR learn how to explain your concept better.

Just my opinion of course, which my missus tells me isn't worth its weight in feathers... but maaan that's a lot of feathers. Don't tell PETA...
 

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Well, being a graphic designer I can tell you that over 50% of my clients nowadays are out of state and have located me through my website. I've not had any issues with any of them. My business has grown and it's all thanks to the Internet and being able to be found.

I'd say for you to seek out any designer that fits the bill for doing what you need and give it a shot...you might be surprised at how good it works.
 

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I think you have more options when you look for designers online.

If you find someone who has a good portfolio and great testimonials, you increase your chances of having a positive experience.

Just because someone is local doesn't mean they won't steal your designs... and as long as someone is in the states you should be able to peruse them legally if they do.
 

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Hi. I've got pretty much the same question - online or offline designers? So thanks for the replies so far.

But also, I am wondering what type of designer am I looking for? (Hope that doesn't sound too stupid). I'm not exactly clear because I'm still researching, but do I need someone who can specialize in tee design? Or do I hire another person to separate the colors for screen printing? Or is that something that I can do for myself? (I'm pretty software/computer savvy). Do the colors require separation for other types of printing as well, i.e. DTG? And screen printing is limited to 4 colors where as DTG is not, correct?

Sorry for all the questions! And thank you for any information/advice you can give!!!!
 

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AdenP here's some answers:

Screen printing is NOT limited to 4 colors. Large size automatic presses can have upwards of 12+ stations for colors. Just remember that as # of colors go up, so will your price.

Color Separation is required for screen printing (both water-based and plastisol) and if you're going to be doing vinyl application. It is not required for DTG.

And my advice... I would look for a graphic designer who has at least some experience with designing for t-shirts. For the same reason that you wouldn't hire a web designer with no print experience to design a brochure; there's quirks of the medium that a designer should know prior to launching out on a design project. (but I qualify this by saying there's significantly less quirks to worry about if you only plan on doing DTG)
 

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It depends on which you are more comfortable with. Neither is "best" for all situations.

Some people prefer dealing with someone local, someone they can get in touch with by a phone call or an office visit.

Some people prefer dealing with people online, someone they can easily reach by email and communicate in their free time.

Whether you hire someone local or on the internet, the possibility exists of them stealing your designs.

That goes back to dealing with someone you are comfortable with. You need to use your gut and vet each designer you are considering so that you are comfortable sending your ideas to them.

It's not really in a designers best interest to steal a design. You don't get many repeat customers that way.

Sure, there are shady people out there, but it's not the norm. You just need to do your best to vet them out and avoid them. Check references, etc.

But don't let fear of getting your designs stolen keep you from moving forward.

As soon as you start selling, the world will see your designs, and if they want to steal them, they might. All you can do is try your best to protect them, research copyrights/trademarks (see the Resources area to the right or search the forums), and decide whether or not how or if you want to pursue people that take your intellectual property.
 

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This is great information! Thank you.

I have one question - how do you negotiate the price with a graphic designer? Is it best to give an hourly rate, per design or a royalty? I would be grateful for any advice...

Thank you!

Malinda
I personally have paid a quoted amount instead of doing the royalty or commission thing. Then you would have to keep track of all your sales of that particular design and be required to continually pay the designer. I just think paying them the one time and it is done is easier and then if it is a real hit you get all the profits and not have to keep paying them. JMHO.
 

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I agree with Rabbitdog and TMooreGraphics. Finding someone online, but still in the states, is probably your best bet. You don't want to limit your choices or your designs by having to go with someone local, who might not be the best.
 
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