“A designer should not have to invest time and resources with no guarantee of payment…”
Jacob over at Just Creative Design has an opinion piece in which he discusses his thoughts on Spec work, design contests and more. While logo design contests that pay $35 to $200 are somewhat demoralizing, and ultimately produce mediocre work, I don’t entirely agree that they’re bad and should be avoided at all costs. The fact is that your work is only worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it. In today’s economy, companies don’t place a great value on great design. This is a poor business decision, but out of our control. If you need the money, and you can bang-out some quick (and I do mean QUICK) logo designs, why not make $200 for your two hours of work? The key to dealing with design contests such as 99designs and other sites offering these contests is to accept that the clients they bring to the table are not “prime” clients. They’re “filler.” Don’t spend a lot of time and effort on them because no matter how many you win, you aren’t going to make a living, and ultimately you aren’t going to produce your best work. I’m not advocating these design contests, I just don’t believe they’re all the evil that some designers believe. They can even serve to stimulate your creativity, or at the very least provide you with some work for your portfolio.