Monthly Archives: April 2005

The GD Industry in a Flattened World?

This is a topic that was touched on in the Certification thread and it also popped up on some other forums. I thought I’d toss it out there formally.I just started reading Thomas L. Friedman’s “The World is Flat” — which is excellent so far, BTW — and it raises a lot of interesting issues, to say the least.The technology field, particularly the software industry, has seen — up close and personal — the effects of globalization as tens of thousands of software jobs have been moved to cheaper labor markets like India over the last 10 years. Few objected during the 90’s, when it appeared that there was something for everyone in the land o’ good ‘n plenty but since the bubble burst, many have noted that the off-shoring of jobs previously held here has sped up.

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They’re not laughing WITH us, they’re laughing AT us

I just read a pretty disturbing entry over at Design Observer. It’s entitled “The Designer as Buffoon” and chronicles how in two major advertising campaigns in the UK for IKEA and Ford, designers are being lampooned and portrayed in an unflattering light.Now I’m all for laughing at ones self and would be the first to admit that we designers do a lot of things that are pretty darn funny. How could someone who depicts the industry in the form of the See-no-evil, Hear-no-evil, Speak-no-evil monkees NOT concede that we can be a humorous bunch?But I agree with Adrian Shaughnessy, the author of the entry, that the appearance of not one but two major campaigns at the same time are far from accidental and are indicative of a huge perception problem of designers on the part of the public in general and design buyers in particular. It leads one to two inevitable questions, the second more difficult to answer than the first:1. Why is there such disgust for designers?2. What role, if any, do WE play in the presence of this disgust?

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GD Industry: Stop Eating Your Young II

In writing the entry calling for the GD industry to stop eating its young, I was reminded of one of my earliest experiences in the industry.The interview from Hell!Young, ambitious, head-strong and not just a little cocky, I set out after graduating from University of the Arts in Philadelphia to big bad Gotham City to take the New York City design world by storm.My first interview was with a designer whom I had read about in Print magazine. Although she wasn’t hiring at the time, she agreed to meet with me, look at my book and give me advice as to how to proceed with finding a job in New York. The plan was to meet with her in the morning, get her sage advice, then have lunch in the city and continue on to an interview with another small design firm that had hired a couple of UArts grads from the class two years ahead of mine.Of course what I had secretly hoped would happen is that she would meet with me and love my portfolio so much that she would fall all over herself in an attempt to woo me over to her firm. That is, of course, if she could win out in the bidding war that would undoubtably take place, pitting her against a half-dozen award-winning design firms in the city! What actually DID happen is not the stuff of dreams or fantasy.

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A revolutionary definition

Yesterday, over at my site, I posted the following:

I???ve just read the most concise definition of brand over at A Clear Eye. To quote:

A brand is the expectation of someone or something delivering a certain feeling by way of an experience.

??? end of original post.

Well, 24 hours have passed, and I???ve had a chance to digest this. I had one of those a ha! moments in the shower, and nearly cut myself shaving. Two separate ideas suddenly clicked, and my understanding of each deepened as a result.

I???m in the process of reading a book called On Intelligence by Jeff Hawkins (the fellow who invented the Palm Pilot, amongst many other things). In it, he proposes a new model for understanding how we are smart. In essence, he states that we hold models of experiences in our memory, and that we compare incoming stimuli against those models to determine, well, everything. In turn, each incoming stimulus affects the shape and content of the memory model ??? it???s a dynamic relationship.

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GD Industry: Stop Eating Your Young

I just stumbled onto a GREAT article on the Icograda website written by Geoffrey Roche which was also published in Applied Arts Magaizine.It’s entitled “The Danger of Hiring Juniors” and it implores design firms and agencies to stop shutting our talented young designers and design graduates OUT of the industry!How does one get experience if nobody will give them a job?The greatest paradox in our industry and the most cruel joke in the biz. Kids save their money, their parents mortgage their homes, they take out student loans, attend prestigious design schools for 4 years, finally get their degree and what do we tell them? “You need experience for this entry-level job that pays a little more than a waiter earns!”

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Petition for GD Certification

I was on the Graphic Design forum discussing the issue of GD Certification and we were trying to figure out next steps beyond discussion. One of the steps we came up with was an online petition. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are 212,000 graphic designers in the United States.So here is the petition. Please sign it and let your friends know about it as well. Post it to other GD discussion boards and tell your co-workers over the water cooler.Support our industry’s standards!.chris{}

Adobe to buy Macromedia for $3.4 billion

We all woke up this morning and saw the news of this while reading our morning coffee. Adobe is buying Macromedia.The question is, what does this mean to us? The GD Industry is almost totally reliant on products distributed by these two software companies, soon to become one. And what is to happen to programs created by Macromedia that currently compete with similar Adobe products? Buh bye Freehand? Seeya later Fireworks?

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