May 11, 2003 at 10:45 AM
I read an article recently about visual design and the Web. The article went on to preach about benefits of eye-candy designs. I agree on the part that form always follows function... there is always form that will accompany function. The two are inseparable. However, form never equates to art for the sake of art. Form is something that plays an important role with the function. It aids the design. Design does not exist in simply the visual realm. Design encompasses the architectural and functional realm as well. The assumption by articles of this nature often leads to the user. They assume the user wants experiences like what you may receive in downtown Tokyo. Advertisements and visual stimuli come in massive doses. Can we not assume that the user is here to obtain some key and very specific information? Why not give the user an experience much like a library where everything is easy to find? These experiences do not have to contain painted tope walls and brown carpets. They can have a modernist appeal and vibrant colors, yet they will always serve the purpose of presenting information in a way that is covenant to the user. This is what separates graphic designers from web designers.