Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Graphic Design Field: A Shaky Sieve

One thing I am interested in is the career of graphic design.  Although there are both generalists (who take a wide variety of jobs) and specialists (who often take a niche a la typography, web design, print media, etc) there are an increasing amount of people interested in graphic design.  It is a trendy profession with a lot of people not realizing the cutthroat nature of graphic design.

The fact the field of graphic design may so be, or already is oversaturated with too many designers.  Although stronger designers are generally more successful the gap between professional design and novice design is closing.  Professional designers have to continue to separate their work from the rest of the design bandwagon.   Programs are becoming easier to learn and more automatic functions are being added.  Typography used to be available exclusively to those who devoted their life to the art.  Currently, with widely available programs like Fontlab, almost anyone can create a typeface.  Seasoned designers need to publish strong typefaces that set themselves apart from the multitude other similar edited fonts.  In the same way, many people have access to Adobe Photoshop (and simple programs like Picnik with ~2,179,724 monthly active users) plenty of people can spew out high contrast photos, arrange text, and add soft glow layers.  All this isn't negative, but it does smudge the lines between 'cool' and good, solid design.

Perhaps this increase in misguided graphic beeliners will be beneficial by introducing more people to the field of design.  At the same time, it will very likely provide people with a false sense of "artistic talent" and make it harder for society to identify strong, professional design.  What do you think?

No comments:

Post a Comment