What Design Is and Isn't
What design is and isn’t Design often has the properties of good looks, which perhaps is why it’s often confused with style. But design is about the underlying structure of communicating— the idea, not merely the surface qualities. The late, great designer Saul Bass called this “idea nudity”—messages that stand on their unadorned own. Certainly, it’s possible for a good idea to be poorly executed. But bad ideas can’t be rescued. When, for example, a global fashion house put verses from the Koran on the back pockets of its designer jeans for all the world to sit on, that was a bad idea before it was ever designed and produced. And the outcry of indignant Muslims worldwide loudly attested to this. Using a different color or type style wouldn’t have changed the outcome.
Ideas give design its weight, its ability to influence audiences positively, negatively or not at all.