8 Things You May Have Wondered About Graphic Design
I was doing a bit of keyword research recently and the same sort of questions about Graphic Design kept cropping up time and time again.
Some of them weird, some wonderful, and some just plain old bizarre. So I thought I'd take a crack at answering some of them in this post.
1. How Has Graphic Design Changed?
In Graphic Design, trends and fashions come and go, but essentially it's been around since the dawn of civilisation and it isn't likely to go anywhere soon.
Graphic Design is way of arranging imagery and/or letters to communicate a message. So from primitive cave paintings, to Ancient Greek pottery, to medieval literature, you'll see examples of graphic design all throughout history.
The biggest change for the people that work in modern Graphic Design, is the invention of computers and design software.
Traditionally, graphics were done by hand with a variety of physical tools - i.e actually scissors for cutting, glue for pasting and rubber erasers for deleting things. Strange to think eh?
2. Does Graphic Design Involve Drawing?
It can do, but it doesn't need to.
It's good to have some basic drawing skills so you can plan out designs and sketch out concepts, but you don't need to be able to do full blown illustrations.
That said, it's an incredibly useful skill to have, especially as the lines between Graphic Design and illustration tend to blur a bit.
Plus, employers nowadays like you to able to do all the things, so it can help your career prospects.
3. Why is Graphic Design Important for Business?
Graphic Design is incredibly important for business for three main reasons:
a) To communicate ideas, messages and concepts to the best of your ability.
b) The better designed your company documents are, the more 'professional' you look.
c) Design is a large part of a company brand, and good, consistent branding means easier and more effective marketing.
4. Is Graphic Design Art?
No. Design is Design. Art is Art.
Obviously there is some crossover between some of the techniques and aesthetic considerations, but ultimately the main difference is that design solves problems or communicates messages.
Art has other purposes, such as provoking an emotion or starting conversations.
5. Can Graphic Designers Have Tattoos?
Now this is a weird one.
The quick answer is obviously yes. Anyone can really. I have four myself.
In terms of visible tattoos in the work place, this varies from employer to employer, however it hasn't been a problem anywhere I have worked.
Perhaps it's more a question of 'do Graphic Designers have tattoos?'.
And again, yes. However I do think we're a bit more fussy about things like that because you have to keep the design forever, and not only are our tastes continually evolving, but we tend to keep seeing ways to improve designs.
Obviously this would cause a bit of an issue if the design was permanently attached to your skin.
6. How Will Graphic Design Change in the Future?
As Graphic Design can be quite rule based and structured, there are some people who think that AI will be able to take care of a lot of it in the future.
I have my doubts, simply because of the need to empathise with the audience you are designing it for. AI can't do that (yet).
I think we'll need always need humans to do some parts of a design. However, I don't have a crystal ball, so what do I know?
7. Does Graphic Design Involve Math?
It depends what you are designing. I personally find maths stuff pretty difficult, but I occasionally have to puzzle over a calculator when a project calls for it.
Most print jobs will require a decent level of maths to make sure all the measurements are correct and consistent.
It also helps when you are designing with grids. As an example, say you've designed a page with 12 mm margins. You might choose to create six columns each with a gutter of 3 mm so that you have equally spaced elements.
Maths knowledge helps you figure that sort of stuff out.
8. Do Graphic Designers Make Logos?
Yes. In fact for some Designers, that's all they do.
Logo design and branding are some of the most difficult elements of Graphic Design, and take a huge amount of work and experience to get right.
Well, there you go.
If you have any questions or comments feel free to join in the conversation below.