Episode #131
Designing For Designers

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Is all designers really just for designers?

Music and links from this episode

  1. Outsiders in Nome by Mystery Mammal
  2. Route of the Old West Convicts by Fields Ohio
  3. Arrythmia/ a lost battalion of conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off Empire State out of the moon into vacant Ohio factories by The Fucked Up Beat

Line-by-line notes

  1. You’ve already seen the title of this episode
  2. Design isn’t for designers
  3. It’s a controversial viewpoint
  4. And one I want to explore in a little more depth
  5. Designers deep down know that design not only isn’t for designers
  6. It SHOULDN’T be for designers
  7. But still, we design things that only designers would get
  8. This is AADA, and I’m Craig Burgess
  9. MUSIC
  10. As I said
  11. I’m presenting a controversial topic
  12. I think lots of designers will see this episode and think
  13. Well, I don’t design things for designers
  14. But, I think you’re wrong
  15. Often we all design clever logos
  16. Clever websites or clever bits of design
  17. And all that stuff, the majority of it only designers will get or appreciate
  18. Take the classic example, the FedEx logo
  19. How many times have you explained this logo to a non designer to show how clever and deep design can be?
  20. Non designers don’t look at things like we do
  21. They don’t look at the leading of a paragraph
  22. Or the kerning in a word
  23. They don’t look at something and think it could have done with more space
  24. Or the colours are wrong
  25. Or even that the apostrophe is used incorrectly
  26. These are all things we care about as designers
  27. And rightly so, of course rightly so
  28. But the point I’m getting to
  29. Is that lots of this extra detail
  30. Beyond the stuff like proper spacing, leading and kerning
  31. Is all stuff a non designer won’t even comprehend
  32. So why do we bother?
  33. If 90% of the intended target audience won’t get that clever thing you did with that logo,
  34. Why did you bother?
  35. Now this is as much of a question directed at myself as it is at you
  36. Designers bother with those extra bits for lots of reasons
  37. But the main reason I think is pride
  38. It’s my job as a designer to do the best job I can possibly do
  39. And that often means going far and above what a normal person would to care about something that most people won’t see or even appreciate
  40. It’s a little bit like Steve Job’s stories about his dad, Paul Jobs
  41. He tells stories of his dad being a craftsman. And having the ability to make anything
  42. But no matter what he made, he never cut any corners
  43. Even when he made a chest of drawers, he refused to use a poorer quality wood for the back of the drawers that nobody would ever see
  44. And he’d always pay as much attention to the back of a fence as he did the front, the bit that most people would see
  45. That’s a desire to do a good job
  46. It’s a pride in your work
  47. And that’s why designers do what they do, and why I do what I do
  48. It’s why most of my work never gets seen by anybody,
  49. And why I draw 300 logos in my sketchbook before I even get to a computer
  50. Designing those little bits for designers is exactly the same thing
  51. It’s build in little Easter eggs into my design work, especially branding and logo work
  52. It’s something fun to discover
  53. And it’s like painting the back of a cabinet
  54. Most people will never ever see it
  55. But that’s ok, im cool with that
  56. I do it for that one person
  57. That one person who stumbles across that little nice touch
  58. And when they spot it
  59. They smile
  60. And they feel a little bit warm inside
  61. Because they discovered something most people won’t discover.
  62. That’s what those extras are for
  63. And I live for those
  64. MUSIC
  65. This was AADA and I’m Craig Burgess
  66. Music featured in this episode was
    1. Outsiders in Nome by Mystery Mammal
    2. Route of the Old West Convicts by Fields Ohio
    3. Arrythmia/ a lost battalion of conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off Empire State out of the moon into vacant Ohio factories by The Fucked Up Beat
  67. For a line by line rundown… /ep131
  68. If you want more updates about my podcast, follow me on Twitter at craigburgess
  69. I’m back tomorrow

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