A DESIGNER’S MANIFESTO
A good designer never stops learning. Innovative thinking is a key aspect in the success of design. One needs to stay up to date with the ever-changing and expanding state of technology, as it holds hands with design. Our audience also changes, and so we must change with them, constantly discovering new frontiers that we have not yet covered, and stay until we have mastered these areas.
A designer does not become an expert and stops growing, rather a designer becomes an expert because the growth never stops. Life too, is about the constant art change and motion, and so our design process must be. The art of living is the art of learning.
Considering the psychological impact design has on our audience is a necessity. What we design will ultimately have an effect on someone that will experience it, and in this we as designers need to be certain of the implications of our design. Effective design can only take place once the knowledge of the psychology involved is understood fully and executed efficiently. Elements such as colour, type use, content, size and visuals all influence the emotion and mood of a design, it is therefore in the designer’s best interest to decide what psychological process needs to happen in the thought process of the audience, and then alter the design in a way that will make this process possible. Good design is not random, but a rather logical process that is thought out extensively before execution.
Never settle for anything other than complete satisfaction. When designing something, make sure that the final product is something that you admire, something that you would hang up in your house and not hide away from yourself. A design is not complete until you are fully satisfied, until you as the designer can say that you have succeeded in creating something fulfilling. We have the ability to judge and formulate our own concept of what is ultimately our best, and until we take full responsibility of our creations and work until we are entirely content with the result, instead of settling for that which “will do”, we will never produce something genuine and ultimately, magical.
Design something that is useful, not just aesthetically pleasing, even if it is a poster, let it create a wave. Everything we design needs to be of value, it needs to create something other than aesthetic enjoyment. Designers not only create visuals, but we create a process of motion, action and awareness.
When designing packaging, let it be of value to the consumer rather than something that’s lifespan will involve being used and then discarded. When creating a poster let it evoke a concept that will travel through the minds of viewers and into their conversations, creating a living concept rather than an inanimate project left to fade.
Leave a little bit of yourself in everything you do, like a mark of pride, a signature of your own personal touch. In a world with an array of artists, designers, and creatives – originality is imperative. Without it, we will fall into the abyss of mimicry and familiarity. By attaching our own flare and personality to the things we create, we allow for originality. It is our duty to discover our own calling, as people and as designers, and once this has been achieved, it will be evident and visible in all that we do.
A strong character is one who is self-aware. And the person that is self-aware is completely recognizable, once that translates in our design process, the outcome of what we produce will be memorable and have our own personal stamp of individuality.
Everything we create needs to be raw, genuine and honest. It need not manipulate the audience into a false perception of what has been create or what is being offered. The stamp of quality that we will strive to place on everything that we create, must not be deceiving. The reason for what has been created and the outcome needs to be visible and available to the viewer, without the hopes of influencing them unknowingly.
Our design will not promise something more than what it is, it will not lie about what is being offered, it will not create a perception of something more than its reality.
Designing for nature and in consideration of nature is vital. Nature is the constant giver, therefore we must aim to constantly protect and sustain the world that we live in. That which we design will aim to contribute to the preservation of our environment, using minimal resources, and resources that are environmentally friendly. We will create products that have a longer life cycle, minimizing pollution. Not only will we care for the environment in our own design process, but we will constantly aim to contribute to the motion of awareness.
We will be fighters for nature, and use our skills to develop a community of activists. We will be part and support the environmental generation and we will stand firm in our beliefs. We will not surrender to unsustainable consumerism, uninvolved organisations and the like.
Today’s society is one lacking quality and value where everything has an expiry date. Trends set the standard for fashion and are forever changing, sub-cultures are constantly being introduced, reaching its peak and then declining into a fate of nothingness.
Therefore, it is crucial to create that which is timeless. That which is indispensable and invincible to the wrath of fashionable change. Design that is timeless is that which will live through the ages, have lasting power and remain in the minds of the initial audience and audiences to come. That which we design therefore needs to be iconic, distinguished and effortless.
Simple design aims to detract unnecessary elements in order to retrieve the raw underlying truth of that which has been created. Through this we will explore the core of existence, the basic geometry behind it all. Simple design is harder than the complex, therefore making it worthwhile and effective. Less is more, and this means that less is better. The less we try to visually portray something, the more understanding will take place. It is essential to hack away at the unessential and deny pretension and exaggeration.
We aim to remove the extraneous to reveal the essence of that which we create. The world is comprised of beings wanting too much and creating too much while there has always been enough, it is our duty as designers to reverse this mind-set.
Finally, we as designers must not only think creatively during our design process, but rather adapt a lifestyle of creativity. Involving creative thought and action in everything that we do. Everything surrounding us has the potential to inspire us to create something remarkable, and only when we open ourselves up to the creative energy we are surrounded with, will we become inspired people, and ultimately inspired designers.
Living creatively will not only benefit the outcomes of our creations, but also our personal lives. It will allow for the spirit of joy and inspiration to embrace us as individuals, producing a more fulfilling and satisfying life.