“Digital design is like painting, except the paint never dries” – Neville Brody
Neville Brody is an influential Graphic Designer, Typographer and Art Director.
To me, Brody is referring to the evolution of design, commenting on digital design, the endless possibilities that are driven from new technology and other designers, together forming a new style of design and design as a form of language.
Digital Design isn’t just a physical piece of work that is hung up in prestigious galleries to be awed by. It has become a significant element in western culture, advertising, marketing, branding, website building, digital collage etc, holding the power to communicate something, to be interpreted and to shape.
Language, like other things, has evolved through human existence. We can even notice it through our own existence, we are apart of it, constantly. Thinking about the social norms today, on social media, users communicate with friends via sending or tagging in memes. Memes themselves, are a form of communication, a representation of culture, filled with meaning when the reader understands the context. The context could be a toy 90s children played with, the meme could be a simple photo of that toy, to kids born after 2010 for example, will struggle to understand, unless they researched. The point I am trying to make is, the design is a form of language, and like memes, it communicates meaning through codes defined by pre-existing values and experiences. It is a language that evolves and will continue to respond to significant cultural events. – Digital Design is like painting, except the paint never dries.
It is the process of this language that meaning can be interpreted. In the mediated world of the internet, works of art are available to all who can access the internet. This is actually wild. Interpretation is endless, designers need to be conscious of the world around them and conscious of the power their works hold. On another hand, their works could be taken and remediated to explore deeper or variant meanings – just like memes.
It is ideas that change design. We, as designers need to be critically engaged in society, be conscious of ill patterns and express ourselves creatively. Don’t become stale, don’t become stuck and continue to challenge. – Paint never dries