What exactly is Design?
Jimmy Hornet loves good design, in fact, we’re a little obsessed with it. Our Team is constantly on the hunt for great graphic, product, and fashion design. When we decided to add a “Design” category to our blog, we thought it important to understand the definition and scope of the term.
When you consider a “Designer” you probably imagine a creative type, glued to the latest version of Photoshop or some such graphic enabler. Creating a pleasing visual graphic is certainly one traditional aspect of design, however consider from the following lists how the scope of design has changed over the last few decades:-
Conventional Design Roles
- Magazine Layout Design
- Product Design
- Interior Design
- Fashion Design
- Lighting Design
- Costume Design
- Set Design
- Building Design
Modern Design Roles
- System Design
- Service Design
- Visual Marketing Design
- Marketing Data Design
- Wireframe Mobile App design
- User Experience Design (UI)
- User Interface Design (UI)
- Social Design
Nike Design Studio Hong Kong
So what it is that defines “Design?”
The Oxford Dictionary provides the following definition:
de·sign /dəˈzīn/…1.1. Do or plan (something) with a specific purpose or intention in mind.
The design historian John Heskett provided the following definition:
Design is to design a design to produce a design.
Furniture Design Studio, Dongguan China
A Modern Definition for Design
The design discipline, as it has become over the last four decades, requires a more specific definition. We like the following provided by Todd Olson of The Design Innovator:-
Design (verb), as a discipline: plan the creation of a product or service with the intention of improving human experience with respect to a specified problem.
Using the above definition, it seems that almost any form of planned change can be described as a design project. For instance, If you cook a meal without strictly following a recipe and adding some level of improvisation, you could claim to have “designed it.” Your intention is to improve the human experience of taste, visual plating or even the health benefit.
Although there are those who believe the scope of design as a discipline is too broad, at Jimmy Hornet we are pleased that it allows us to present a wide range of products, concepts, and even services to our reader, under the “Design” category of our blog.
We leave you with an extract from Morgan Allan Knutson:
What sets a designer apart from a ponderer is the will to affect change, to create, and to make better.
Our discontent is the basis of wanting to improve the things we observe.
Next time someone says designed are unhappy people, explain that you’d be happier if the world didn’t need so much improving.