Starting something new is always a bit scary but like with many things there is always a reason. My reason comes at the age of 47, my purpose has always been to help people. Along with that I have expressed myself through art since I was a child. The reason why I make art is something that I have been able to explore the last year and a half. My art is like a camera man taking a photo, it is a sliver of a moment that I capture. What I am capturing with my art are the choices we make which is usually influenced by emotions like anger, caution, and passion. I think about what has happened to me and the emotions that I have felt when confronted by a decision and I think about how I have reacted to those choices. What intrigues me is the choice of saying yes, do this, or no do not do that when a problem occurs. It is that cross road in life, that moment of why did I do this and not that? The choices that keeps us safe or sends us down the wrong path and the roots that give us strength to follow our hearts, or to explode with anger, and think about our actions because of loved ones. An artist that inspire me is Jenny Holzer because of her truisms, this is me to a T, and how I apply this in my life when talking with my children, youth, or even adults. Exploring this art is a new experience for me and my process of writing my experiences are core to what I make. It gives me the purpose on placement of what I make digitally, in essence I recreate the scene that I remember and the emotions that go with it representing it with colors of how I feel during those times.
The next decade of Graphic Design
Looking forward to what I would expect to see in graphic design, I first must consider my view of what graphic design used to be. In order to be able to think about the look of what we will do in the future. I also will review five sources; Patrick Cramsie’s last chapter in his book. “The Story of Graphic Design from the Invention of Writing to the Birth of Digital Design”, Graphic Designer Nick Law’s comment in video from a conference Make/Think 2009, Curator Ellen Lupton’s tour of graphic design, Andrew Blauvelt’s comment on Graphic Design in the 80’s to now, and Cennydd Bowles who is a designer and book author that made a comment in a video for Adobe Creative Cloud. All these sources have helped me conceive where I believe Graphic Design is headed.
My interpretation of Graphic Design 20 years ago as a single highway that got you to a destination. Now I look at it as several highways that interact with each other, that take you to the same destination but with many stops or views to get there. What I am referring to are the ways apps work with websites and how every website page flow and mesh well with each other. If you look at what our focus was on twenty years ago, we looked at banners, a way to click on an advertisement that took us somewhere on the internet. The limited selection of fonts, then the creation of logos to what felt like the big bang! I graphic design going into many different areas, that expands into whatever new market that will be created. I see it changing and molding as the world changes too. This is because from what I have learned is that society influences design and in turn graphic design creates the image of what is going on around us.
Thinking about the last chapter in our book for this assignment. “The Story of Graphic Design from the Invention of Writing to the Birth of Digital Design” by Patrick Cramsie. He said “Any attempt to predict the future of graphic design will suffer from the same sort of limitations” (Cramsie, 2010) This being the first source it really made me think of graphic design as a child. To think that your child is limited to certain parameters will stunt its growth and not blossom into what it could, it is a serious view to consider, especially if you love graphic design. During this course I learned how graphic design has evolved and as each century has passed how fast it is going and I would say that the growth is exponential.
My second source Nick Law expressed the ideas that graphic design must be a collaborative effort in an organization. I truly believe this in doing some work for Adrian Public School Bond’s effort. While I was doing this, I would get feedback to what I was creating or asked to make design based on our message to get the votes needed for our bond to pass. I only echo what Nick Cave said in his video “The future in not in silos. The future is the people collaborating. (Cave, n.d.) at 16 minutes 35 seconds into the video. He used a PowerPoint to describe to design a system that involved everyone involved from coming up with the story, which thinks up the story, those that edit it, and those that create it. He mentions one person can not do it well or see every angle to come up with a complete story which creates a medium that when done well it involves all of those people that creates the advertisement that is beyond a message.
My third source Ellen Lupton a Curator. She gave a tour about graphic design and showed how design looks now and showed several interesting pieces that incorporate the internets feeds like twitter to create artistic posters that regenerate what ever is being posted on the internet. What I took away from this was how artists take ideas and expand on them and redevelop an idea and how it influences new designs to be create. Ellen Lupton said, “your niche will define you” and “Graphic Design is a physical activity.” (Lupton, 2012) When I think about Nick Law’s video, I do think its your niche that will define you, just like what Patrick Cramsie implied that there is so many graphic design branches and it can explore many forms of design. These two concepts are like a design team working together all doing different parts to get the finished design. I did enjoy seeing all the artists in the video by Ellen Lupton and think about how I see Anthony Burrill work and Barbara Kruger’s work. It’s the next evolution of design which also looks like the future of graphic design.
Andrew Blauvelt is my fourth source and I decided to watch each of my sources videos to get a personal understanding. He was interesting presenter, I felt he was nervous but not scared, just concerned. He described “graphic design as bloated, soft” (Blauvelt, 2011) He was referring to the 80’s. It called it a blob not formed yet is what I think he was implying. This was due to the personal computer coming out and many people had access to the tools to create and design. I can see that, I think if I was an artist without a niche, I would feel overwhelmed in what direction to go or what to make, even though I feel that the 80’s were an interesting time for graphic design. The other thing that Andrew Blauvelt said was “Graphic Design finds itself as dispersed as a decade ago, however the critical space running room is open to adjacent and not so adjacent practices. We might save it after all.” I felt that even though a decade ago it was a blob and he said the same for 2011, I think he was indicating now there are branches of graphic design and practices that we can use to creating and designing. This all wraps around the other source’s comments too. To think that we are now seeing collaboration, finding the niche as artists, evolving as artists, which helps us see how graphic design is shaping towards the future.
My last source I added is important to me because of another class that I am taking and deals with just about everything I have learned in all my classes. When it come to the practices of UX/UI, designers and can create an app or a website that must be free of flaws to get you to what you want to see, in the same way as a highway would. I feel that it will be how well it gets all put together that will be the core to making graphic design feel smooth and simple between its future of how things are designed. This is what Cennydd Bowles said in an Interview with Creative Cloud on YouTube. “We need to design beautiful seams versus seamlessness.” (Cloud, 2017) Which looking at the future of design I think it will be larger companies and the people that work together that will collaborate that will set a trend on the styles we see and use. If you look at what we do now you see a new flat design look its those seams that are beautiful that join pages to create a theme that turns graphic design and fine art together. What looks more minimalistic but has more meaning with little to no words, with lots of color. This design is cleaner that get the message to the viewer to make a quicker overall look to decide of what to click to follow along easily. I do believe that collaboration is the way to go. In researching this assignment, I searched for designer jobs at Microsoft. I came across well over 50 jobs just within the United States and India. It is this type of collaboration that moves like an army in the Graphic Design world. It will be these companies like Microsoft and Apple that set the foundation to society of how we should view graphics along with those celebrities that we follow in social media.
So many avenues have made graphic design a solid part of how we do things globally, to think what used to be looked at it as a glob, has now branched off into new territories of design specializing on product, destinations, prints, magazines, web graphics, and the list goes on. I would be negligent to assume I would know where graphic design is headed 10 years down the road. I can see trends of design, but I can't see the what our future holds that could shape where graphic design is heading. What I am referring to is social issues of the worlds like war, disasters, and political change. What I do realize is that as a designer we see what is happening around us and use those ideas to create. Others see that work and improve on it and recreate it. Those iterations are happening so fast and we must be flexible because of technology allowing us to share around the world. It will be a collaboration of big corporations and individual designers that become the glue that forms what we will create, to reaffirm what Ellen Lupton had said, “Your niche will define you” (Lupton, 2012) and I believe it will be that, that shapes graphic design in the future.
Blauvelt, A. (2011). "Tools(Or Post production for the Graphic Designer).". Retrieved from www.Vimeo.com: http://vimeo.com/66385792
Cave, N. (n.d.). www.aiga.org. Retrieved from www.YouTube.com: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBetjaZKtx4&feature=youtu.be
Cloud, A. C. (2017, Apr 10). YouTube. Retrieved from Ask a UXpert: What do designers need in the next decade?: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TJqCRZX92E
Cramsie, P. (2010). The story of Graphic Design from the invention of writing to the birth of digital design. New York: Abrams.
Lupton, E. (2012). Ellen Lupton's "Curator's Tour of Graphic Design-Now in Production". Retrieved from Smithsonian: http://www.cooperhewitt.org