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Plum Grafik Services


Service Areas (Portfolio):

Graphic Design: Advertising, Identity, Information, Book Covers, Packaging, Presentations
Illustration: Line & Color, Information, Photographic, Cartography
Fine Art: Painting, Portraits, Sculpture, Crafts
Training: Design, Illustration, Apple Macs & Mobile Devices, Tutoring
Consulting: Design, Technical, Small Business Services, Expert Witness

Why use a Designer?

People often think Design is an arbitrary decorative area where they can save money. As Richard Branson often says, you “set the stage for a great customer experience with good design.”

With significant experience dating to the days when all this was done by hand, I know what needs to be done and how to save you money doing it. If I can't do it myself, I will be the first to tell you. Educating and empowering clients is one reason why there are extensive information materials on this site along with the pictures of my work.

Good design isn't easy to come by. The effort that goes into planning and executing graphic materials can be extensive. Success takes experience, talent and luck. It takes years of training and practice to express complex ideas in just a few lines, words or images. Conversely, if you use the services of a novice, you can expect less than professional results. Clients may lose money in easily avoided mistakes. Take your image seriously. Protect your investment and use the services of a professional.

See Design Terms for terms used here, in pricing and contracts.

Design Pricing

Part of the fun of solving problems in design, technology or otherwise, is attacking something new and coming up with answers that solve it quickly and well. As a designer it helps to be able to focus on design and not worry about putting food on the table. Unfortunately there are now legions of international corporations offering services at prices no one can live on. Many are using students, others depend on the disadvantage in third world countries. In neither case will these "designers" be there when you need them most. And I, for one, don't care to encourage exploitation of talent or turning this profession of into a discount service at Walmart.

The Graphic Arts Guild Pricing Guideline tells you what is "normal" in the design world... how much you can expect to pay and what you get for that expenditure. My Pricing document outlines that in detail.

And please, use a contract ... they are not like iTunes User Agreements ... something to be accepted without reading because they aren't likely to affect you. A contract outlines both parties responsibilities and tells you what you are getting for your money. It protects both sides from misunderstandings. By law, some rights can only be transfers in writing.

Highlights from the Guild Pricing

Graphic Design hourly rates vary from $55-100/hour, $65-110 for Consulting.
A Simple Print-on-Demand Book Cover, one concept (design only) for the front and spine, when billed as a flat rate is $800-1,200.

Branding, what is known as logo design, is a complicated and critical issue. Most people are not aware that a typical Corporate Logo project costs $25,000-75,000 for the design phase. Production of related materials is additional. Even a small business logo will be $1,800-$10,000, depending on the business.

Below is an overview of my pricing.

Contact: sandra @

Pricing Details & Contracts
Training Information

Plum Grafik Basic Charges

Design Basic
Design Moderate
Design Complex




Production Basic
Production Moderate
Production Complex

Project Admin







Apple Device Training*

Photo Cleanup Basic
Photo Cleanup Complex
Photo-Composite Simple
Photo-Composite Complex

Photo Illustration

Vector Illustration Simple  
Vector Illustration Moderate
Vector Illustration Complex

*Local Travel where appropriate






Some services are charged with a flat or package rate. Most jobs are unique. Actual prices will depend on the services needed, the complexity and the scheduling. Estimates are generally provided at no cost. Creative work and some training can be done over the Internet, hands on training is available in the Inland Empire.
Discounts are available to Starwerk Publishing clients, non profits and other special groups.

Common flat rate services are:

Self-Published or Print-On-Demand Books. Flat Rate                                        $400-TBD*
An Independent press cover design of average complexity including front, spine and back, with a reasonable deadline** (client materials provided in usable condition), one time limited rights, dropped into a Lightning Source, Inc. or similar submission form would be an entry rate.
Deliverables: Three (3) digital sketches or comps (comprehensive visual representations) One (1) final “tight“ comp digital proof, production and delivery of digital camera-ready art. Creation of tangible elements and hard copies are taxable. Additional sketches, comps, presentations and author’s changes will be billed.

Example of a simple book cover, with provided art work and photos. Complex covers in Illustration.

Promotional or Advertising Materials. Flat Rate                                                 $300-TBD*
A project of average complexity with a reasonable deadline**, one-time limited rights, all materials provided in usable condition. Deliverables: Three (3) digital sketches or comps (visible representation.) Tangible elements and hard copies are taxable.

Example of a simple black and white newspaper ad done to the clients specifications. Minor photo work.

Example of a complex ad with photography and photo composites. Logo provided by the client.

Logo Design Flat Rate                                                Please inquire $TBD*
Every job is different. The top two images look relatively simple but went through several variations. The third incorporates an illustration adapted from a photo of Caitlin as a baby. Lynn's name was painstakingly drawn by hand because no typeface had the handmade look with the right combination of letters. All required hours of seemingly endless type samples, massaging spaces between letters and letter shapes to get a the balance right.


* Complex Rates will be calculated based on the requirements of the job.
**Please leave adequate time for sending, receiving and reviewing materials before submission.
Design credit and portfolio copies of printed works expected when appropriate.

Rights should appear on the contract/final bill in writing. One time reproduction, to be re-negotiated for subsequent publications. Additional payments are required for use of the approved art by another publisher, book clubs, film, TV, web, EPub or other media. All other rights are reserved by the designer. Original art is to be returned. Unapproved versions, proofs and drafts are the property of the designer and/or contributors.

1/3 up front, 1/3 on acceptance of the comps, remainder (including expenses) on delivery of the materials. All out of pocket expenses incurred are billable.
A rejection or cancellation fee reflecting the amount of work done is an accepted industry standard. This may be as much as 1/2 the agreed upon design fee for an accepted job plus out of pocket expenses. A 15-25% markup is appropriate on expenses paid by the designer on behalf of the client.

[The Graphic Artists Guild has resources on the Web and chapters in most major cities. For members they offer many services.
You can obtain a copy of the 400-page Guide at Amazon Graphic-Artists-Handbook-Pricing-Guidelines/dp/0932102166 or the Guild Handbook for about $40 retail.]

Plum Digital Data Sheets.
Related services in Resources
Client materials.

The images and data on this site are the property of sandra ragan/plum grafik, clients thereof, and others as noted. Please respect their hard work and creativity by following the "Golden Rule,"
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Webmaster: webmaster @ Thanks.

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