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During the first stage of a complex design is no time to consider color.
A stylized headline custom fitted to an extremely complex key visual with lots of text that's peppered by more than a few subheads is quite a lot to make work in one ad layout. In order to successfully compose so many details in a timely manner, the layout approach was to combine a pencil drawing with computer type. To even consider color at this stage can be confusing. It is much more efficient to settle on style first and then consider color from existing portfolio samples.
         This is where due diligence of the prospective artist's work should instill confidence needed to move ahead. If there are concerns about color, maybe the brand needs to be matched which can be done while the work is in progress. Especially if the work is being done in a digital format whereby an image can easily be converted and e-mailed to the art director.

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.
         The addition of color, mostly flat fills, was necessary for those client-side participants who could not attend the presentation. It's only function was to clearly indicate that the ad would be in full color.

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