ow far a design for presentation should be taken is usually decided by the job originator or creative director. They are in the best position to anticipate the circumstances under which a layout will be shown and what degree of polish will be required to ensure good results. Should niether of them ask for a specific manner to develop the concept, it is up to the creative provider to spell out an approach for their approval.
Given that there will be a presenter who has the complete confidence of the presentee, a thumbnail can sell any concept. Conversely, if the work must sell itself to a room full of strangers, it had better be complete in every way with only the production phase left to finish. Then there are in-between situations in which anything from a rough layout to a semi-comp will do a great job.
When there is need for a fairly high level of finish in the presentation piece, the task is usually performed by a designer with input from the art director. This is a productive way to work in that it serves to consolidate all elements of the job with the individual who will also be producing the finished product.
For some presentations, a line and color rendering is the best solution.
When headline and copy are approved, but the image needs additional exploration, a quick line and color style is an appropriate way to work. With clarification that its purpose is for content and composition only, a loose line drawing combined with the copy is plenty to demonstrate how everything will work together. To get a better idea of how the finished piece might look, the client was also provided with a portfolio sample that showed the intended illustration style.