Sure, we are aware that in order to come up with a good design, one has to learn different skills and be good at it. Design skills would always be number one but aside from that, there are also other skills that one needs to develop in order to be a better designer. We have already given you different articles about this and we are going to add one today. Another important skill that designers need is the attention to detail skill.
Some actually wonder why this is considered a skill but actually it is. Admit it, not all people are keen to details and meticulous enough to check on everything related to a design project. That would involve not just the output but the design process and even in dealing with clients. One should know how to look into every single thing the client says because this can give you the clue on how to get the client’s approval and what to avoid when transacting with him. So, having good attention to details has a wider scope than merely looking into the mistakes you might have done for your design.
What is Attention to Detail Skills?
When we talk about attention to detail skills, it refers to having a keen awareness to the tiniest details. It also means that a person is precise and accurate. This is considered as one of the easiest skills to learn but it can also be the commonly overlooked skill. Employers tend to look for this from their employees because this will give accurate and good results for the tasks given to them. People who have attention to detail skills are good in giving directions, editing, identifying errors in numeric data, proofreading and other tasks that require focus.
It is important that designers have good attention to details for this will help you to meticulously recheck your work for minor and major mistakes. Also, this will help you to focus more on your design projects. The lack of attention to details can lead to absentmindedness and you will tend to be out of the right path that you have set to achieve your goals. Developing good attention to detail could lead to a better life both personally and professionally.
How to Practice Attention to Details Skill When Designing
Attention to details skills is necessary for designers. So, if you find it hard to do it, we have prepared some tips on how you can practice it while working on your design projects.
1. Play with ideas.
There is always a better idea than what you have thought of at first. So, instead of sticking to one idea, try to think of what other design strategies and techniques you can use. You will also be able to choose on what design elements you can add to a certain project. This can develop your attention to detail since you will be comparing every draft that you will make. Sketch each idea on a separate paper then ponder on which one is better. Look into every detail of each one. Try to think of the good side and downside of each design.
2. Design and review.
Once you have chosen an idea, work on it. While working, see to it that you did not skip any important detail for the work. Once you are done, ALWAYS review it. Rechecking your work will make you see some mistakes that you have overlooked. Most of the time these mistakes include little details like a small white space to an area that doesn’t need it, a misspelled word, wrong alignment, shading and others. So, before you give your output to the client, review it. You can effectively do this by taking a break first. After taking a short break, you have already recharged your mind and this will allow you to see every detail of the project, especially the mistakes in it.
3. Create a work plan.
You should always a have a work plan. Create a list of what needs to be done first then the other steps needed to complete the project. Doing this will ensure you that you will not skip any of the important aspects. When you create a process, be sure that you will follow it. Designing is like baking a cake. There are certain measurements for ingredients and steps on which comes first. If you do not follow the right steps in baking a cake, your cake will surely fail. Don't have a work plan? Know how at A Guide in Making Your Own Design Process.
4. Recheck and review more than once.
We have mentioned about reviewing your designs but you do not do it once. Do it many times. Doing this will give you a good output. A project will only be considered complete when no mistakes are seen in it and if it is already readily available for your client’s usage.
5. Consult a colleague.
Aside from repeatedly checking it, you can even ask other people to look at it because more eyes are better than two if we talk about rechecking details. This will also help you improve since you will get input of something that you haven’t thought of and hadn’t previously considered.
6. Break tasks in smaller ones.
Yes, you have a design process. You know what needs to done first then what follows next. But you will find it hard to work well if these are large tasks. So, break them into smaller tasks. Focus on the smaller ones because completing them will help you complete the large task too. You should also know when to do single-tasking and multi-tasking rightly.
7. Create lists.
Make it a habit to create lists. People who use lists tend to be more organized and more focused on what they are doing. This isn’t just a to-do list but it is can also be a list of materials you need and others. Lists show the details of what you are doing and you will be able to pay attention to them once you see them.
8. Increase your interest.
Sometimes, you will lose your interest to work. This will draw you away from the project you are doing and you will be out of focus. So, try to do something in order to increase your interest level for the task. You can motivate yourself by keeping your eyes on what you will be acquiring once you finish the project.
9. Take breaks.
It is important that you take breaks once in a while. This will let your mind rest. When you get back to work, you will be able to look into the details of it better. Breaks doesn’t need to be too long, a few minutes will do. You can stretch for a while or get some snacks too. Read more about this on Reasons Why One Should Consider Taking a Break from Freelancing.
10. Avoid rushing.
When you rush projects, you will no longer be able to look into the details of it because you will think of it as a waste of time. That is why you should always work on it early so you have enough time to review it.
How to Improve Attention to Details Skills
Aside from applying attention to details skills while designing, you can also do other things that would develop that skill. This will help you perform better.
1. Recognize that details matter.
This is the important thing. You have to tell yourself that details matter so that you will not just shrug it off. People who find attention to details as a real pain are not able to recognize the value of “details”. Convincing yourself of its relevance to your work will help you focus on the details that you once did not care about.
2. Exercise your brain.
How are you going to do this? Play games that need attention to details like puzzle games, spot the difference games, finding hidden objects, and others. You can also read books, watch challenging movies and other activities that could exercise your brain.
3. Rest well and get enough sleep.
This is important especially that it is your mind that does the work. Your brain will not be able to develop enzymes necessary to keep you focused if you lack sleep. Once you lack rest, you will become forgetful, have short attention span and would have diminished concentration. Hence, sleep at least seven hours every night and take some rest once in a while.
4. Do some physical activities.
It doesn’t mean that just because you are a designer, you will merely stay indoors and disregard physical activities. You also need to exercise for it can increase your ability to focus and concentrate. Your brain releases a chemical as a result of exercising that would improve your attention to detail and relieve stress.
5. Shut off distractions.
One big factor that hinders one to pay attention to details is the distractions around him. So, learn to shut off all types of distractions. You know well what these are.
The benefits are long lasting once you follow the above tips. Not just your attention to details skills will be developed but also other skills. You will surely become more productive, accurate and efficient too. You will also gather a lot of advantages once you work on your designs with attention to details. You will no longer deal with huge design revisions and your clients will also be happy that you deliver perfect results. This will surely profit your design business and improve you as a designer.
So, are you a designer who is struggling with paying attention to details? What steps do you take in order to develop that?