They should be good in graphic design. That was one of the requirements when we hired designers for our product clinic.
I have previously posted here what I do at work and my involvement with Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). Before we launch the SMEs in the International market, we usually conduct product clinics. We invite designers to critique the products of the SMEs. Then, they usually create designs to match the products with the demand of the market. We teach them about the color trends, the styles, the tastes and even the process on how they manufacture products.
I had this product clinic from Sept 4-6 and it was also the reason why I have not written a thing during those days. Anyway, we hired 5 designers, all were good in graphic design. But one of them deviated from the modern way of designing.
While the designers were bringing their laptops in small laptop sleeves, Ali was bringing a huge luggage. At first, I wondered what was inside the bag. When he opened it, it was full of different kinds of papers, crayons, highlighters, measuring equipment, post it notes and other materials old school artists use. I assume he was in his late 50s.
He will ask the entrepreneur to sit down. Then he will critique the product and then he will start to draw using a graph paper. He will color the shades with his stabillos and then he will give the designs to the entrepreneur. The process was intense. I am not saying that designing using technology is not intense. I am sure that it has its own complexities. But while observing Ali design the products, he also connects to the entrepreneur.
I have been receiving feedbacks from the entrepreneurs and they all have one thing in common: they felt that Ali completed the ideas they had in mind. Most of the entrepreneurs dreamt of the similar designs but they were not able to implement them because of the vagueness of the ideas. According to them, Ali made the ideas clearer. It was weird and somehow creepy. But it was awesome!
I am not sure if Ali’s refusal to use technology made the designing process more mystical and more personal. I do not want to interpret what happened but it’s refreshing to see traditional designers helping the Entrepreneurs thrive in this fast paced world of business. How Ironic, but it’s true.
Here’s a nice quote to end this post. It’s actually about ideas being alive:
I believe that our planet is inhabited not only by animals and plants and bacteria and viruses, but also by ideas. Ideas are a disembodied, energetic life-form. They are completely separate from us, but capable of interacting with us – albeit strangely. Ideas have no material body, but they do have consciousness, and they most certainly have will. Ideas are driven by a single impulse: to be made manifest. And the only way an idea can be made manifest in our world is through collaboration with a human partner. It is only through a human’s efforts that an idea can be escorted out of the ether and into the realm of the actual. – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic