Почему я это делаю? Потому что я говорю по-английски, но это очень все несолидно. Оценить литературный текст я не в состоянии. Когда я сама читаю деловые книги на английском, я (к счастью уже) понимаю практически все, что там написано, но чтение ощущаю как физический труд, я с текстом борюсь. Этого у меня нет ни с немецким, ни с русским. Но английский у меня просто слабый. Поэтому оценить чей-то перевод я не в состоянии ни с какой стороны.
Чего я хочу от перевода:
- Чтобы он легко читался для человека, который нормально владеет английским языком, и без труда читает хорошо написанные английские книги. Не только для нейтив-спикеров!
- Чтобы перевод передавал смысл оригинала. Я совсем не претендую на "кальку" и понимаю, что некоторые вещи надо в другом языке писать совсем иначе, но в целом смысл должен остаться.
- Чтобы хоть немного передалась "атмосфера" моего текста. У каждого автора есть свой слог, который даже он сам часто не может воспроизвести, переводя сам себя на другие языки - я на это не претендую совсем! Но если я шучу и хотела, чтобы русский читатель на каком-то месте улыбнулся, то хотелось бы, чтобы и перевод имел подобный эффект. Как-то так.
- И я не претендую на литературный шедевр - по сути данный текст - нечто среднее между деловой литературой и рассказом. И такие тексты должны просто легко и смешно читаться. Т.е. не надо прикапываться к переводчику, если он не пишет как какой-нибудь классик английской литературы. Пусть оно просто легко читается, и является грамотным с точки зрения хоть какого-то английского (мне все равно - бритиш или американский, или какой-то еще).
И будьте осторожны при выборе слов! Критикуя другого, представьте себя на его месте! :-)
А вот перевод:
That Nonexistent Ideal Client
There is no end to debates over and search for the "ideal client", this myth of a generous and just person who believes that designers know all by themselves how they are supposed to work, since they have studied for it and gained certain experience doing it. This client’s the one who doesn't attempt to assess or quantify creativity, convert it into pounds or yards multiplied by dollars and cents.
Such people don't go turning their thumbs down on a color their designer has painstakingly picked, simply on the grounds that this hue reminds them of the eye color of their sweetheart who, incidentally, has just eloped to Mexico taking along half their nest egg and their broken heart...
It's the client who tends to pay heed to professionals' advice, trusts them whenever they say what is good and what isn't. This kind of person doesn't need a design to be all flashing and iridescent. To tell you the truth, a lot of clients could use a little bit of modesty...
In a perfect world, it should be a person who pays you tons of money and says: "It's up to you how you do it, I'll take anything!"
When we discuss this imaginary client, we still give them credit to have some idea of what they want to get in exchange for their money. However, this idea should be as abstract and flexible and have as few details as possible. This person ought to have faith in the designer, his talent and skills, and also be able to agree that he's totally out of his depth in this line of work (and if he is, it would be a good thing if this fact caused no hard feelings on his part).
What is he like then, this dream client?
Throughout my life, there was probably only one client who gave me a pile of money and said these precious words: "Make it ready, make it good, so that I don't have to think about it." After taking a closer look at him, though, I realized he wasn't a client at all. He was an agent with a few good ideas (which were pretty abstract) and wanted someone to put them into life instead of him and give him an opportunity to do what he always did better than anyone – sales. He was selling ready-made complete projects, promoted and advertised what was already available, and it didn't matter much to him at this point what color those buttons were. The thing's good, so if you like it, buy it as it is, as a whole.
Nevertheless, he still exists, a real-life client who needs a design done for his own pet project and is ready to let a designer create, staying out of the creative process himself. I had one like this visiting me just a couple of days ago...
It took him a long time to get to my door, and all the while he was calling me, apologizing that he and his wife were late. Then he came, alone. Bewildered, he repeatedly looked around at the door and sighed: "She has just broken a flower pot on my head and ran off. Shall I go look for her? What if she takes off on her own?"
I persuaded him to wait a bit and suggested that any furious woman would calm down all by herself within fifteen minutes and come around. She came in ten.
Afterwards, he talked for two hours, pulling out items to illustrate his ideas until the desk was entirely covered in wires, speakers, cell phones, chargers, and papers. Then he went out to find the flower and brought it back along with the pot broken in half.
Like a showman, he amused everyone with his smart and witty talk and told us how well he understood creative people. He described very graphically and at length how little it meant to him what we were going to draw as long as it was really beautiful. But when he opened his laptop to show us texts for his website, I eventually realized this man was off his rocker, pure and simple. Crazy to the point that it was better to have nothing to do with him altogether.
The client left in five hours. And me, I was so amazed at how exhausting insanity could prove to be...
The next day, I got a call from a girl, a manager who was working with me on a small project for a pretty boring and conservative German client. I listened to all her instructions and accepted her condolences on that kind of nasty work I had to do. Then I almost nonchalantly, within an hour, slapped together a totally dull dark blue website featuring a faded laptop on its cover page, and an hour later already there was an email in my mailbox: "Thanks a lot for having done the job so fast. Please send us your account details."
That's when I thought: "Good God, this is so great..."
Now what smart conclusions can we make out of all this?
- Clients who allow designers to do whatever they please at their expense can also talk your head off, nag you to death or drive you to suicide – there's plenty of ways.
- Clients who want to have something dull, ugly or even horrible done for them can be very easy to handle. The trick is to learn to grasp their requests and produce an appropriate and high-quality result that contains all the explicitly described details the customer envisaged.
- If a client strongly insists on something which is by no means compatible with any reasonable solutions, it means he is just stupid. Working with idiots is the most ungrateful thing imaginable (it's only worth it if a lot of money is involved).
- If you have to work with idiots more often than with nice understanding people, maybe it makes sense to consider options with your agent and do something good the way you really like it, just for your own satisfaction. You can ask your agent to sell a completed project (for a certain commission percentage). It is a risk but doing something like this is undeniably enjoyable.
- Unfortunately, there is no silver bullet for dealing with stupidity though I'm willing to over and over sympathize with all my friends, acquaintances and readers about how hard and unhappy life is...
- I haven't yet found a way to do only what I like and get paid enough money to support myself, but I know for sure this is possible. Thus, I often think it's what is worth going after...
... But then I forget I should be going after it and start fooling around again...
That's just the way it goes.