15 questions to prompt stationery design critiques on Minted

When asking for constructive criticism from Minted artists, there are varying schools of thought. Some artists prefer to ask broad questions, while other artists prefer to drill down to a specific point.

Longtime Minted artist Phrosné Ras shared her advice on generating critiques. “If you feel something is not working in your design, you should have some idea where the problem is,” says the artist known for hand-drawn elements. Same goes for providing feedback to others—aim to be the opposite of ambiguous. Thoughtful observations and pointed suggestions for improvement are more helpful than saying, “I don’t love it.”

This is an example of how Minted artist Melissa Casey asked for feedback on her submission to the What a Bright Time Foil-Pressed Holiday Photo Card Quickfire Challenge in April 2018. She created a poll to share several versions of the design and asked the question, “My thought with this one was to make it more of an art piece and not so much of a card. I therefore blended the text into the design. Do you think it works or should I make the text more obvious?” Her approach generated a significant number of critiques from fellow Minted artists.

Not sure what Minted critiquing is all about? No problem.
Critiquing is kind of a big deal at Minted, and it’s a great way to help fellow artists learn and grow. Critiquing has become an integral part of the Challenge process, in which Minted artists can request feedback from other creative who live around the world. Think of it as an open discussion among creatives of varying levels—from just getting started to very experienced and folks who have a keen merchandising eye. In general, we tend to think that even the most experienced creative people need a second (or third) opinion. And along with that, feel free to take others’ feedback with a grain of salt. After all, critiques are opinions.

The very best way to ask for feedback is to request it on your submission page, which you can do with just a couple clicks. After you submit, a banner will appear with an “Ask for Feedback” button you can click to request feedback. The button is also located above every submission currently in the submission stage. You’ll be prompted to ask the community a question about your piece. You can delete your feedback request or edit it to ask a new question at any time.

Want quality critiques? Here are 15 specific questions to ask.

Stationery Design Critiquing: Suggested Prompt Questions

For photo and non-photo card designs
• My goal with this design is to [fill in the blank]. Do you think I achieved that?
• Do you think this design works well for this particular Minted Design Challenge, or do you think it would be better suited for a different challenge?
• Do you think the scale of the illustration/art works? Do you think the text is too big? Does it look balanced with the art?
• What do you think about these colors (or colorways)?

Typography and copy prompts
• How can I improve the typography?
• Do you like the font choices? (Pro tip: Check out the Minted Font List)
• What do you think about the hand-written text?
• What do you think about the tracking of the type—should I track it out more or less? 
• What do you think about the leading—should I increase or decrease it?
• Do you think this is enough space for names?
• What do you think of the copywriting or greeting—does it sound right for this design?

Prompts for photo card designs
• Do you think this photo pairs well with my design?
• Do you think the design works well for [fill in the blank: a single photo; multiple photos]?
• Do you think I should change the design from portrait to landscape, or vice-versa because of [fill in the blank]?

Prompts for foil-pressed designs
• Does the use of foil “make” the look and feel of this design, or would the design work just as well without foil? (i.e., is foil used in a transformative way and integral to the “fabric” of the design).

10 Tips for Critiquing Minted Art and Design
7 Ways to Master Art and Design Critiques
15 Questions to Inspire Quality Art Critiques

About the Author: Amy Cuevas Schroeder, Minted’s Senior Community Content Manager, founded Venus, the magazine about women in the arts and DIY culture, and has written for Etsy, West Elm, Pitchfork, and NYLON. Connect on Instagram @thevenuslady.

Published April 17, 2018

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