CLUTCH Vol. 5: The Grand Design


Design is ubiquitous.

We experience graphic design on different levels in almost all aspects of our daily lives in its various forms, through various mediums: in print books, magazines, newspapers, advertisements, posters, billboards, in packaging, on TV, online websites, and so on. A multitude of messages are being relayed to us whether we are conscious of this or not, each brand vying for our attention trying to make their message heard. In this week’s workshop, lead by Christine Mangosing, Graphic Designer Extraordinaire, we learned all about Graphic Design and Branding and discussed what it takes to build a brand and an image.

Comparisons are frequently drawn between art and design. Art and graphic design are both forms of visual communication; however design is more exacting and overt in communicating its message to a viewer. Graphic design creates compelling associations between images, texts or typography imagery to present its idea, whereas the messages carried in art images may be more abstracted. The elements of design--in case you forgot high school's Art Class 101--are line, texture, colour shape and form. And principles such as unity, balance, scale, emphasis, similarity and contrast are constituent of visual work. Additionally, visual art and graphic design also share similar ends, as Christine explained graphic design is intended to identify, inform, entertain, persuade and in many ways, artwork is able to do the same.

Whenever I start working on an art project, I start with a concept in mind and I arrange things in a piece according to what I feel looks right, but I realized that in some ways art can be designed.  This workshop taught me to be more aware of how an audience is interpreting what they are viewing and to be more conscientious of how I organize and arrange my compositions. I believe integrating some approaches to design can help guide my process as an artist. By understanding the weight and responsibility of my choices as an artist, it made me feel more empowered and gave me a greater sense of artistic freedom. So thank you to Christine, and thank you to graphic design; I show my gratitude in refraining from use of comic sans.