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However, it is good to note that despite the numbers of typefaces, designers were seemed to be not contented with it. The new batch of designers did not maximize using the traditional typefaces offered to them by the computer, and they opted to use specialized software programs and created new type forms. Not only were they able to create unique typeface of their own, but they were also able to minimize the time commonly used in rendering mechanical drawings of each letter. This was because all of the drawing is accomplished on the computer (Thornton, 1996 para 8).
Graphic designers used a variety of methods in creating their own typeface designs. They would sometimes combine two existing type forms to create a hybrid font. At times, they would disregard some portions and weight of letters' harmony and manipulate it thereby creating shapes to produce barely recognizable letters (Thornton, 1996 para 8).
These younger designers utilize every possible ways of creating their own designs of typefaces because they believe that typography is not effective in communicating the information anymore.
They stressed that typeface alone could already express various emotions and feelings, that is why these designers believe that it is not important that the texts can be read clearly. What is more significant is the fact that the letters could express newer styles and attitudes (Thornton, 1996 para 9).
At first, a lot of criticizers see the designers' unique typefaces as 'garbage' but when the public and the consumers acted like they liked the idea; it became popular in a way that major publications have started using it too. Major corporations did not have any choice but to follow the trend and use the same style of creating unique fonts or typeface (Thornton, 1996 para 9).
Changes in Equipments
Along with the changes that were happening with the texts or font types, the very sources of such fonts were also having extreme improvements. Before, typewriters were the only available material for typesetting and/or producing texts that will be used in the designs. Then came the computers. With the computer, texts are seen in various forms, sizes colors and styles. After the computers, various software and programs were initiated.
With series of software, designers were able to make their own niche in the world of graphic designing. With software, designers - students and professionals alike - were given democracy to access special tools and programs needed for their own designs. As a result, there has been an increased appreciation of good design that has actually benefited graphic design instead of weakening its professionalism (Thornton, 1996 para 15).
Nicole Hickman, one of the prominent graphic designer and production nowadays disclosed the most recent software or program now being used in graphic designing, and this is the use of Postscript.
Before, things that were done with special equipment, or not done at all. With Postscript imaging technology, the ability to set type to an unlimited size without degradation of the quality of the type outlines made typositor machines a thing of the past. As Macs became more advanced and faster, and software like Adobe Photoshop, Quark and Illustrator made it possible to do more complicated layouts and composition incorporating photography and type effects, things that would have been too expensive to produce in the past became a matter of course..." (Hickman)
Change in Graphic Design Education
Going back to the early years of graphic designing - during the early parts of 1960s, teaching-school-based designers would never touch or highlight advertising as part of graphic designing. However, this attitude gradually changed as the younger generation of art directors serve as the professional leaders. This is because these new generation of art directors studied and were trained in design schools and universities (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 34).
As a result, advertising became more connected with the designers rather than those marketing or sales people. In the same manner, the line that divides the art directors who created advertising and those who called themselves graphic designers became very thin. It eventually came to a point wherein the advertising agencies put up design sections while the graphic designers adopted the Japanese method where there is little difference between independent art directors and graphic designers (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 34)
Slowly, the education for graphic design evolved with the new technology and a new focus from the faculty. One of the most noticeable changes was the addition of decoration for printing to visual problem-solving that createed industrial and corporate identity depending upon the look of their publications. Teachers concentrated on educating the aspiring designers on creative research focusing on experimental visual solutions to problems in communication rather than emphasizing vocational training (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 34).
Before the computer cam into prominence, design students would be having their designs dependent to limited production quality. Most of the solutions were just painted, glued, and even hand-crafted. However, to the students' disadvantage, the prototypes they would be making will always look unfinished until it was actually printed. Now, with the advent of computers, printing and color copying allows are making it possible for the students to produce finished work that looks as professional and finished as the outputs from the expensive printing presses (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 35)
Programs in the computers were also expanding. Instead of the old and large Scitex Response System which was commonly used to manipulate color photographs, students were taught to use electronic methods of changing images through Adobe Photoshop (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 35).
Another aspect of the change in educating the students with graphic designing was the availability of published textbooks and development of courses in European and American design history that started during the 1980s. These textbooks and newer perspectives from different countries added interest and depth to design education (Alessi, et.al. 1991 p 36). Students who were earlier taught about one approach and an older point-of-view were then given the chance to decipher and analyzed the perspectives from two highly industrialized nations.
The Benefits Brought by Graphic Design Technology
Graphic designing is already being done even before. However, the dawn of computer technology has brought tremendous improvement to the methods and approaches on graphic design (Thornton, 1996 para 1).
Because of computers, a lot of changes have happened and a number of tasking jobs were removed with the methods of designing. Typesetting has been gradually eliminated and was replaced by graphic designing. The use of traditional types of fonts was substituted by newer seemingly unrecognizable letters, yet producing an effective design (Thornton, 1996 para 2).
Today, graphic design technology is being used by a lot of other designers and/or artists. Some of the highly noted graphic designers are Jules Cheret, Piet Zwart, Paul Rand, Alexey Brodovitch, Milton Glaser, and David Carson (Thornton, 1996 para 2).
From the interview, Hickman revealed his unwavering appreciation to the advent of graphic design technology. According to him there was really a big change in the technology of graphic designing since he started on 1976, and he was just a typesetter then.
You saw the results of your work only after it came out on the imagesetter. Since then, everything is produced on-screen, and later printed, and apart for things like color correction, you can pretty much rely on the fact that what you see on the screen is what your layout will look like, because you have a preview..." (Hickman)
This is for him was the most beneficial thing that graphic design technology has brought to the world of art, communication and advertising.
Graphic designing conserves time, energy and resources. No need to consume several days of waiting for the final lay-out and printing to be seen so as to ensure that everything is laid out correctly and properly. Editing and correcting all possible errors is also made easy because in just one click of the mouse or the keyboard, the changes will immediately appear even without having initial printing first. Thus, resources, time and energy will be spent wisely and excess of which can be used for other tasks.
However, having been a witness of the old and the new methods of graphic designing, Hickman stated that there were also some setbacks as the newer technology of graphic design was introduced.
Now, there seems to be a bigger burden on art directors to produce print-ready materials. In my opinion, this makes it harder for art directors to just create things. In addition, because the tools nowadays make it easier for an art director to take things all the way to the point of final production, it's had an impact on people whose jobs were based on doing the production themselves. Many have lost their jobs as a result..." (Hickman)
It was stated on the changes in the tools, equipments and methods that there were a number of tasks eliminated. Obviously, there were also a number of personnel (who used to handle the eliminated tasks) who were removed from their posts. Although this is…[continue]
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