Design: The logical selection and arrangement of visual elements for order and interest.
Everything our eyes rest upon can be described as a design. For example, the veins in a leaf, the lines on a hand, or billowing clouds.
Even when we doodle or scribble, we can call these marks we make with our tools—pencils, sticks, fingers—designs!
It’s quite fascinating how our doodles can be identified within the twenty basic scribbles you see below:
Our doodles can also be seen within these eight basic diagrams:
Beyond, there are combinations and aggregates:
I recently had so much fun developing an artistic technique using construction caulking. I called this new creation Caulk a Doodle Do.
Design is Primarily Redesign
Perhaps by now, you have come to realize you have been a designer all along. Artistic expression doesn’t have to fit into any type of box.
Some of my best students who attend my creative exploratory classes instinctively know how to move beyond boxes and just play. The people who feel most artistically challenged often forget one essential insight: Play!
Usually, the hesitancy to play is rooted in a judgment that art should exactly replicate physical reality. There is nothing wrong with reproducing what we see but it’s such a narrow, often arduous artistic path and can be a bit lonely.
Art is the desire of a man to express himself, to record the reactions of his personality to the world he lives in.” — Amy Lowell
I like that quote. Through art, personality is revealed. I bet if you examine some of your favorite art pieces you’ll notice how those artist’s interpretations are reflected within your perceptions. That’s what makes art so personal and so freeing.
Art is discovery, art is playfulness, art is desire manifested into form.
My hope is this Graphic Design Basic Element Series will open the door so you may begin to explore your unique creative eye by tuning up your vision. No matter what medium, choose to express yourself, remember you are a creator by nature waiting for self-validation. Making a mark is the first step.
In a way, an artistic expression is a form of self-love. Today is as good a day as any to begin a practice to free your creative spirit.
In the second tutorial post of this series, I’ll cover the Basic Design Descriptions & Shapes. I hope to meet you there!
Please visit the Art & Design Table of Contents to follow each series in its order.