Archive for March 2010

the role of a graphic designer in today's society

8 March 2010

I was recently asked this question by a former student: "Why am I designer and what can I offer to businesses to help them grow their business?" This former student was responding to a post at

This is a big question that has a big answer. In a nutshell designers offer a visual/cultural translation service between industry and society. The people who develop travel programs, for instance, or soft drinks, or laundry detergent are not always able to seamlessly present the benefits of their product to a receptive audience. Marketing specialists help by studying demographics and identifying target audiences, but it is the designers who must interpret the client’s message in the best visual way for maximum communication. For that reason, graphic designers have become almost like mediators between business and society.

For more on this topic you may want to read David Barringer's essay, “American Mutt” originally printed in Emigre, no. 68 (2005). It is reprinted in Looking Closer Five: Critical Writings on Graphic Design (edited by Michael Bierut, William Drentel, and Steven Heller).

Published on March 8, 2010 at 10:33 am | | 0 Comments