Comme Ci Comme Ça

Or, as one former associate used to put it, "some days, chicken pie; other days, chicken s---."

I've started entering designs over at 99 Designs. It's a website where clients can go to request design work. Designers submit their work, the client picks one, and the winning designer receives a payment. It's quite good practice, especially in working with a variety of clients and their various specifications. It's frustrating, however, when the clients offer no feedback and I'm left wondering where I fell short. Take the two designs below:

I'm very happy with these two designs (especially the one on the right), but the client wasn't. I read the spec sheet pretty closely and there are no radical departures from their stated desires. I was disappointed not to have made it into the finals, as it were. Nonetheless, it was a good experience. I tried one new thing and was delighted with the results. 

So basically, it's back to the drawing board. What do you think?

Warm Wood Desktop Background

This is my current self-designed desktop background. If you like it, feel free to take it for your own use.