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How do you perceive design?


A few days back, I was at an outing with a bunch of friends. I took out my design brief, notebook, pen and started jotting down ideas, writing my rationale. A friend of mine said, “What are you doing? I thought you’re a designer!” (I was a little bit offended, but never mind, he is in the business field). So I just looked up and smiled.

 

I’ll share with you a little bit of what I learnt about design today.

 

After all, one of the most important parts of designing is to think. Designing is not as easy as taking out a piece of paper and sketching what you think looks good. It actually takes a lot of thinking – churning those brain juices, even for straightforward designs.

 

When I first had the Art Design Fundamentals subject in my second semester, our lecturer, Miss Dora wanted us to write a rationale answering a series of questions before we started anything for our first assignment. Looking back, I remember her saying that she would not look at our sketches until our rationale was approved. I now understand why. One of my weaknesses is applying text into my designs. Every word you choose to describe an element has to be relevant to the design. As Miss Dora advised then, “Choose your words wisely”.

 

Do not describe just to describe.

 

Until now, I still struggle to describe clearly what I want to design. I find it helpful to Google a word, look for its synonym up until I find that one word that best expresses my vision. I remember combing Google, asking it “How to describe design concept?” because I was desperate!

 

Also while sifting through Google, I came upon a saying that inspired me: “It’s not a good design until you can describe your concept well.” You really do need to spend most of your time thinking and churning those brain juices in the design field. My hope is to one day master this concept.

 

I believe that a successful piece of design is a design that has a story to tell. Designers are thinkers. That explains why I am such an introvert and spend most of my time alone talking to myself.