With the availability and affordability of design software these days, it’s increasingly noticeable that people assume being a graphic designer in Singapore today is all about ‘cutting and pasting’ things using Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Word or MS Paint etc.
It’s frustrating to be misunderstood and sometimes demoralising when we hear things like ‘My 8 year daughter can do that too in powerpoint’.
It’s not wonder why designers always appear to be an angry bunch.
Design isn’t about knowing how to use Photoshop
Creativity isn’t about the software or computers, those are just tools. It’s about being able to reach into the depths of visual poetry and crafting it out in the most delicate, careful and artistic manner, to bring that vision into actuality, using whatever medium at hand. The end result is thoughtful, intriguing and captivating, not random splashes of paint done by an 8 year old.
So yes, beg to differ as much as you want, there is a difference.
Designers have a similar goal in mind
There is a reason why the term, a skilled craftsman exists. It is a craft that we designers live for. Designers have this belief that they are on a mission to shift mindsets, we are on a self crusade to change the way things are perceived. To break norms, to cultivate question, to throw spanners (and a dozen more things) into the works, to anger, to lead, to destroy and rebuild, a better world.
So when someone suddenly tells you that their 3 year old toddler too, can produce a Jackson Pollock, imagine what the greatest drip painting master would say.
Sometimes it sucks being a graphic designer
Yes, we have heard all these comments before.
Design is not only about aesthetics or form. It’s more utilitarian, it exists as part of an ecosystem rather than in singularity. Good design is meant to provoke and at the same time provide a sense of balance, harmony and improve efficiency in humanity.
It does take a certain amount of experience and a keen eye to understand one’s surroundings and eventually put them all together in one playing field. Moving them around like chess pieces, every execution affecting another and the winning piece is the final design.
Designers face challenges everyday, we reflect and bounce off the world around us and it does not help when potential clients present themselves with myopic mindsets that serve to answer only questions they want answered but not providing much sense to the actual problem at hand.
Being a graphic designer in Singapore today means being thick skinned and weathering out these things, on a day to day basis.
Please be nice to us, we have feelings too and trust our gut when we tell you that something that you insist for isn’t right, it really isn’t right. Go along with us.