Wednesday, December 14, 2011

On Design

Creativity in print journalism is often limited to a set of good headlines and great page layouts. As journalists, we observe life so closely, scrutinizing its various flaws, that we rarely get a chance to step back and appreciate the beauty of the processes that make life, life. I am extremely honoured by the opportunity the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, had given me to look at design from a different perspective — from the point of view of the process, and not the product; as a means and not the end.

Such had been the journey of compiling Young Designers 2011, an endeavour to present the works of 222 budding designers from 17 different disciplines. The range of areas of design their projects have covered reflects the growing need for design interventions in diverse sectors of industry all over the world. Going through the sheer body of the work that the students have produced has been a process of learning for me, as much as it had been for them when they had tried to express their ideas through words and form.

That design could be an aesthetic, a form, a function, an experience or all of them put together, was something I was earlier not aware of. While editing the publication, I learnt that design solutions could be presented in forms as varied as documentaries, films, products, processes and services. It just points out to how little, we, as lay people, know and understand of design. Seldom do we realize that design is everywhere. It is both an art and a science. It could be in philosophy as well as in practice. It could be a method and a solution. And it could be both a process of creation and destruction, as we see in Mother Nature, who is, by far, the best designer in the world.

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