Kaitlyn Baker, Will Burton,
Trendal Miller, Nadia Hidayatullah
17 October 2018
As more and more people join our society of technology, new skills and features are always arising. For students, designers, and consumers, this constantly changing world of technology can be a lot to handle. As new versions of software and programs become available, old ones become obsolete. It’s important to look at the effects of our ever-changing community. Advancing technologies have had a positive effect on graphic designers
In this research paper the argument is whether frequent changes in technologies and its advancements are helping graphic designers to gain experience and keep up with the new trends and demands in the era. Or graphic designers can get overwhelmed with the continuous change in technologies and its advancements.
As graphic design students ourselves, we have researched and provided sources to both argue and support this claim.
(Kaitlyn) An interesting article by Jenny Darmody called, “How has technology changed the career of a graphic designer?” takes a unique approach to analyzing technology and graphic design. She interviews a designer, Jonathan Maharaj, who started studying graphic art in 1992, took a break to explore different careers, and then re-entered the design world 9 years later. This is the perfect candidate to question about the changes in technology that have occurred in recent years.
When asked what first got him interested in design he replies with a common answer, Pen and paper. Most all of us first discovered our creativity or lack thereof early on. Whether it be finger painting, or markers on a poster, these beginner skills are essential to developing a designer. Although Mahara was interested in art, he did not see himself finding a career in fine arts. An art teacher told him about graphic design, which offers a creative outlet, but in a more corporate setting, for real businesses and projects. Mahara says, “‘When I began on this career path, the internet as we know it hadn’t been invented, so things like websites and apps were not a concern, as they simply didn’t exist.'” As time goes on more and more forms of technology are introduced.
Next in the interview, he is asked how technological advances have affected his career as a graphic designer. Mahahra shares a very critical point for our research, “The past few years have seen dramatic changes in this area due to broadband, different screen sizes and the availability of new devices (tablets and smartphones), and now we are faced with the challenge of how we adapt our clients’ work to ensure it is optimized across all devices, providing maximum reach to their audience.” These devices he talks about create challenges. New iPhones, new laptops, and tablets, all need their screens designed! For example, if you have experience designing desktop web pages, that skill may be nearly obsolete if a client asked you to design a mobile app. The formats, quality, dimensions, and colors are all dependent on the users’ device.
Expanding skills to learn these new devices and screens is a large task, but an essential one if one can plan to keep up with the industry. Consumers are always seeking newer devices and even devices in unique forms, such as watches, GPS devices, cameras and so much more. Just as the devices develop and change, the software available to designers’ changes as well. Today we can design entirely mobile, on computers and many editing programs even offer apps. The ability to edit a photo and share it with someone instantly is something that was never even heard of 20 years ago. Today designers can create apps, websites, documents, logos, etc. while sitting in our favorite coffee shop or lounging in the park. Being able to work and move with the world around us is all thanks to technology.
Looking beyond technology, there is still so much to design that simply can’t be done by a machine, this is creativity. Over these changing times, “The one thing that has stayed absolutely still is the need to be able to think creatively. It’s an obvious thing to say, but a computer is only a tool in the same way that a pencil is – just a bit more advanced, but neither can create without human input”. (SOURCE) Graphic designers are still designers, they must brainstorm, plan, meet, interview, present and share the ideas which they have. Creativity is essential to these, way before you bring a design into the computer. Learning to use the modern computer as a tool rather than a battle is what college teaches us. Working smarter, not harder is the idea. Illustrators for cartoons in the past would have drawn scenes frame by frame, and hand draw characters, revising them and redrawing them. Now they can draw them with digital pens, tablets and Photoshop, and make revisions or color changes with the click of a button. For some, they cherish the days of pen and paper work, others value the power of digital software and use it to develop their art to its full potential. Although the ability to learn and do so much can be overwhelming, it is also beautiful. The possibilities of Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator are literally endless. Mahara says that in his career the tasks are ever changing, “In one week, you could be working on anything from creating brand identities or developing advertising concepts, to designing websites and large corporate documents such as annual reports, which keeps things interesting and keeps my mind sharp.” (SOURCE) Connect your quote with your argument in the paragraph to explain why did you put this quote to support your topic sentence.
(Nadia) In the article, from University of California
“What Impact Have Digital Technologies Had on the Graphic Design Industry”, the writer’s argument is for negative and positive impact of technologies on graphic industries. Most professionals are solely relying on technologies to do their work, which is damaging their capabilities of critical thinking. Depending too much on technology has made designers a slave to that system. On the other hand, there is a drastic positive change in design industry by using technologies such as printers, scanners and now 3D printers, software. Different productive machinery has made people’s lives easier and more convenient. Professionals don’t have to spend too much time on creating things manually any more. That saves their time and they can produce more work in short time.
There are so many frequent developments in technologies that most of the graphic designers feel overwhelmed to keep up. Such as recently upgrade of Adobe suite. If someone is using old version of the software there is no way they can work on files that are created in old version. Designers are forced to use new versions of software to keep up their work and to keep himself updated. Sometimes it becomes frustrated in terms of affordability. Adobe creative cloud is becoming more and more unaffordable. There is no way common person can use this software not because of its availability but because of its unaffordability. Few years ago this software was available to purchase with one time purchase, but now professionals has to pay good chunk of the amount on monthly basis.
On the other hand it is getting popular among all graphic designer as they are dependable on that to create their work. Graphic designers are depending not only on those softwares but new computers and equipments, and gadgets that plays an important role in terms of creating a design. Software developers are making graphic designers life easier than it was in the past. It is a good achievement for designers to produce high quality work in this age of technology where as people use to create same stuff by hands. It used to take long time. In past, when a graphic designer work on a project, it took them forever to finish the project. If they make any mistake they have to start over again. But with the technology, professionals can create more and more ideas in a short period of time. Where as there are very minimal chances to make a mistakes. Even if they make some mistakes it’s not hard to delete them with the press of one button instead of starting over again.
The Internet has overall made life and designing easier, it offers a very quick way to communicate with their client through emails and receive critiques or send them feedback. Internet and other social media has open the doors to communicate to the client from anywhere in the world. It is also helpful to work remotely no matter where a person lives. Video calls and other apps are very helpful to call an overseas client.
Adobe software (you’ve probably heard of Photoshop), has brought a huge transformation to the graphic design industry. All designers can easily manipulate tools to create their designs. The advancement of the software helps graphic designer to improve their skills on daily basis.
Competition in design industry is very tough these days. Keeping that in mind, a designer must polish their abilities regularly because technologies keep advancing on frequently basis. After technologies advancements, a designer can easily manipulate their work which was not possible 20 years ago. Thus, digital era with advancements in technologies plays an important role in a graphic designer’s life.
In addition to constant changes in technologies, digital medium has also been changing frequently. The style to design a graphic material depends on market trends. It changes like a fashion on daily basis. As the article titled “Impact of Tech on Graphic Design” states, “In graphic design, we see styles come and go like fashion. Every few years we see a cycle of designers coming from art school re-inventing certain styles. Recently design has left the photorealistic style of images replaced with a retro style bringing aspects from the 80s with designers utilizing neon colors and strong polygon shapes” (UKEssays). Thus, a graphic designer should be vigilant towards the market trends and public demands.
(Trendal) According to the article “Trends in graphic design technology you need to know” tech in the world of designers are important to them in the highest sense of the word, with up and coming tech such as Artificial intelligence (AI) and physical immersion such as electric pulsations to act as real human touch. These advances are going to be used to make the life of the designer easier by allow them to take designing to a different level to be more in touch with the user with physical immersion….
(Will) Another interesting article called Examining the Relationship Between Technology and Idea Generation in the Document Design Process by Claire Lauer has its positive feedback from technology, but also its negativity about the matter at hand. In the article they say “Professional and communication theorists have seen that designers are more productive and creative when removed from technology and visual thinking and visual composition of documents would be improved with the minimization of technology.” In the article they compare how IT students and Graphic Designers have different use of the technologies and different skills we have that are similar in our majors. Like sketching, Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign the Graphic Designer exceeded over the IT students in all the technologies and skills. Moving onto another graph they looked at how many people prefer using a software over sketching to come up with an idea. Showing that most designers use softwares to figure out an concept or idea instead of problem solving in through their hands onto paper. The professionals did say some bad things on how technology is affecting us but they also mention how a lot of design nowadays and in the future there will be a lot of work for people that work with technology. Most of the topics they talk about with time, process work, and technology used. With time spent on each project and going through the steps of Concept, Translation, Revision, and Production. Designers take more time on Concept, Translation, and Revision. With Production the IT students finally take longer than the Graphic Designers.
(Kaitlyn) More and more of our lives rely on technology. It is important to look at the way this affects us. This can influence us in positive ways, making our lives more organized, orderly and convenient. While at the same time it can create obstacles that work crafted by hand doesn’t have. After viewing multiple sources, we were able to narrow down the evidence on this topic. Many people believe that today’s technology has a negative impact on our lives. On the other hand, we have evidence supporting the positive, functional effects that digital technology has on graphic designers. Although the software and technology will continue to develop, it is overall a powerful tool that helps us expand with our growing world.
“What Impact Have Digital Technologies Had on the Graphic Design Industry.” Topics, Sample Papers & Articles Online for Free, 11 Oct 2016,
“What Impact Have Digital Technologies Had on the Graphic Design Industry.” Topics, Sample Papers & Articles Online for Free, 11 Oct 2016, https://studymoose.com/what-impact-have-digital-technologies-had-on-the-graphic-design-industry-essay
“Impact of Technology on Graphic Design.” UKEssays.com. 11 2013. All Answers Ltd. 10 2018
Darmody, Jenny. “How Has Technology Changed the Career of a Graphic Designer?” Silicon Republic, 3 Apr. 2018, www.siliconrepublic.com/people/graphic-designer-jonathan-leahy-maharaj-fuzion.