Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The goal of all designers: create conversations

Tim Lebrecht at frogDesign wrote a post earlier this week about the earliest stage of ideation. In this age of user-generated design, he questions whether designers are really going about their work in the correct way. He challenges designers of all levels to consider that whatever the end product of their design, they should seek to create conversation.

I was a bit confused by this for a time until I considered an art exhibit I saw a few years ago at the Phillips Collection in DC. The exhibit featured works by Joan Miro and Alexander Calder. The created their art as a conversation; this is largely because they did not have a common fluent language. Miro would create a piece; Calder would answer it, and then add another idea for Miro to comment on. And so it went, for many, many years. Across decades, across oceans. They transcended language with design.

So what if companies like Coca Cola or Target took the design POV that they were creating conversations with their customers, rather than creating products? How much richer and more relevant could their designs be? How much loyalty to their brands could they generate?

Pictured above is Joan Miro's "Garden"

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