I made this a while back & shared it on this blog’s Facebook fan page. I got a decent reaction from it, & multiple real-life friends told me they loved it. I just enjoy making random stuff for fun; going back over it with a sterner eye, there are several things I’d change. Even when I utilise an app with “premade” graphics, like Rhonna Designs, it still takes skill. Anyone can make anything look decent with the help of apps like that, but I can easily tell when someone’s had the technical training of a designer; there’s something about the balance of negative & positive space…I’m not implying that just because I’ve had technical training my stuff is always amazeballs; sometimes, as is the way of art, it bloooows. My point, though: A work with any technical skills just feels the tiniest bit different than the person who slaps a quote over an insta-photo, you know? Not that insta-photo quotes are a bad thing; I’ve seen many beautifully done ones. And I certainly don’t intend to sound pretentious or snobby. I’m just saying that as a designer, I don’t get upset that there are apps that can make anyone feel or look like a designer; instead I embrace it as a way to make my own life easier or simpler…sometimes I just wanna design but I don’t want to have to draw out every element! I also love that anyone can be inspired to follow their own “designer dream”.
I love the inspiration that comes from being able to play with apps like that, that come loaded with little digital “stickers” & more. (Not to mention how cute some of this stuff is!) How are these apps really any different, in the end, from stock photo collections or graphics packages or paintbrush PS sets we download to use in our work? Really, there isn’t a significant difference.
I have this photography friend who got incredibly…upset? Hurt?…when apps like Instagram first came out; everyone became a “photographer” overnight & he felt like his skills that he’d worked years to hone & the many classes he’d taken towards his degree in both photographing & developing his photos were tossed to the side every time someone asked “Oh neat! What IG filter did you use?” Eventually he came around — as other photographers have, too — embracing this new medium & using these skills they learned to set their photos apart from the typical IG feed.
Technology continues to advance at an almost alarming rate. Instead of griping about “the good ol’ days” or “the lost art of design”, how about we recognise that the old ways aren’t lost, they’ve simply evolved? We should be evolving right along with it, & taking advantage of technology to grow evermore as artists. Hold on to the old traditions, & use them, but don’t stifle your growth refusing to change, because that’s not art, that’s obstinance. <3
—Elise M. Gross