Looking At Distance And Up Close

I’ve just repainted my metal garage door and the wooden frame (dark grey metal door with a white frame, if you’d like to know).

When I’d finished the final top-coat, I stood back and observed my work with pride. Colour uniform, finish blemish free, no unpainted spots. In I went to let it dry and put my feet up.

The next day, stood 2–3 metres back, it still looked good.

I moved nearer for a closer inspection. I could see brush strokes a plenty, small areas of paint pooling, uneven coverage, missed spots, paint dots on the drive. Not as polished as I had thought!

It’s obvious, but often forgotten, how different the same thing can appear at different distances or if looked at quickly vs slowly. I experience this all of the time when I look at branding, presentations, websites. On the surface, all looks good. Look closer and spend some time with it and the cracks begin to show. Clip art passed off as logos, lots of stock images, misused infographics, poor typography, too much or too little text…

Any communication that we want to be valued needs to be more than something that simply looks good from a distance or in passing. This is especially true if you’re selling a service or process for something specialist or nuanced. Your prospective client will come up close and they will spot all of the below standard, non-professional, bits.