You Can’t Judge a Book by its Cover

Oh, really? Tell that to Jessica Hische. She’s built a pretty fab career designing book covers (among other things) for Penguin and Chronicle Books, with the sole purpose of being judged.

The reality is our work is being evaluated all the time. And I can think of no other profession where judgment is more intense than in graphic design. When someone is paying you to literally make their brand look good, you can believe they’re judging you and your work long before you ever meet them.

That is why having a portfolio that reflects the kind of work you want to do is equally, if not more important, than one that merely demonstrates your skills and abilities.

If you’re booked solid with dream projects lined up well into next year, then don’t sweat it. You’re doing all the right things.


If your goal is to attract the kind of client who wants to pay you to do the type of work you love – then it’s time to start building a portfolio that makes the type of work you want to be known for crystal clear.

Most people don’t know what they want until you show them.

Which is one of the reasons I tell all my design friends to use samples any time they are working on a print project.


Generally speaking, designers are great at, well, designing. Selling, not so much. Yet, clients often need to be sold.

It can take a lot of strength to convince a client why the print budget for the design you carefully crafted for their brand/product/service justifies the price tag. Most clients, especially those in the B2B world are not so great at connecting the dots.

This is when an arsenal of stellar print samples is key.

It’s so much easier to sell a client on the value of a heavyweight business card, or the need to offset print their letterhead & envelopes that feature metallic ink, or the impact a clear foil stamp on an embossed logo will have on their catalog – when they can actually touch, connect and see the visual impact it has.

Studies have been done that show that merely holding an object in one’s hand triggers the same reaction as ownership. It’s called the endowment effect and it’s extremely powerful, especially when it comes to persuasion.

Sounds good, but not sure how to build said arsenal of samples? Meet The Parcel.

Every month you’ll get 5 – 7 fab samples, featuring some pretty amazing print design produced on your favorite papers, shipped directly to your doorstep.

These are the samples to use when you need help selling a client. They do the heavy lifting for you.

All print samples come with notes about each piece, including production details. So you’ll know exactly what was used and how it was produced – and why it’s a beneficial sample to have on hand.

Not sure? Here’s a peek at one of The Parcels shipped this month courtesy of @jenikagonzales via Instagram


If a picture’s worth a thousand words, surely help “selling” a client to invest in your work is worth $29 a month.

And getting paid to create work you love? Well, that’s priceless.


New Subscriber BONUS!

And if you subscribe to The Parcel by March 1st, we’ll send you our newest subscriber exclusive – a sample set of Type Twenty Seven’s, Mixed Up Alphabet of Cocktails! The set is letterpress printed and features unique illustrations and custom typography to showcase classic and modern cocktails for each letter of the alphabet.

Not only are they a fab letterpress sample to have on hand, but they also do double duty for Friday happy hours!

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