Graphic Language: What is Design?

“Good design is invisible”

Well, that’s a boring ass way of looking at a visual art. . . I’ve heard that quote many times but don’t know what dork said it. Probably a web developer or industrial designer :) Definitely not someone who makes logos, posters, product packaging, book covers, or street art.

Design is many things and to try to make it one thing is silly. That quote dosen’t touch all the things that design is, but I get it. It touches things like street signage. Usually in every town and city in America you go to the street signs are green with white Helvetica type. They serve an information purpose and are designed to communicate that info quickly and efficiently. That kind of design is invisible to the extent you don’t think much about it and it is accepted as a natural part of the environment. It causes no harm and does nothing to make you take notice of the things it’s doing wrong, or ruining your experience of driving. That kind of design does not have the same principles as a movie poster or sports car.

Design is graphic art, information, language, communication, technology, a chair, an engine, a plan, an idea, a dream. It’s emotional, or it’s not. It takes a long time to do, or it’s done in a minute. Design is so much more than a single quote. It’s a creation with a purpose, if only the purpose it to create something. I can’t explain it any better than that.