Michael McDonald's Blog

Invisible Quality

High-quality work is the work that most people do not notice.

When a designer presents their comps to their clients, if they start going on and on explaining why they chose a certain approach, what the colors mean and which fonts they used and why, they have done a shoddy job. They know it, too, which is why they are apologizing, consciously or subconsciously, by making excuses disguised as an explanation.

"Never, never sell your design." - Hillman Curtis

High-quality work, like high-quality dance, often looks easy and effortless. It has an easy integrity to it so that something simple is also evidental powerful (like the iPod) and that something complex is at the same time easily grasped and enjoyed as a whole. Great designs appear "obvious" even though the road to those designs, the genius behind their creation, is a long road that requires passion and perserverence.

"The clients should be able to look at the designs and see a bit of themselves." - Hillman Curtis

One effect of this is that great designs get little credit, and great designers appear lazy. The boisterous designer, who etches their ego into their work and makes great pains to be noticed and to sell their work, might leave the audience feeling like the designer is a genius. These are the designers that executives hire. Then there are the great designers whose designs make you feel like a genius. These designers rarely get much recognition, but they are some of the happiest people in the world.

link  |   |  12/27/06 12:23am
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