Oct 20, 2016

Artist vs. Designer

  • Alloy
  • "An artist cares about the full expression of their ideas. A designer cares about function, first and foremost."

    When I first began working as a UX Designer, almost everyone around me treated me like a graphic artist. "Hey Jude, can you help me with the logo design?" "Hey Jude, can you help make this slide deck pretty?" "Hey Jude, does this look good to you?"

    People often do not see the distinction between an artist and a designer, and to be honest I do not think many designers even know the difference. What does it mean to design, vs. being an artist?

    The Difference between an Artist and a Designer

    A designer creates to communicate function. A designer's goal is to make sense out of the chaos, in order to direct orders.

    An artist creates to fully express a story.

    Am I an artist or a designer?

    Because the skills of an artist and designers are similar, you can be both. I think the importance about distinguishing the two roles are about seperating the two roles but rather to tell the story of how these two roles exist.

    What I try to do with my stories is not simply tell a story for someone to feel, but to teach something through the act of empathy.

    If stories had shapes, all Pixar films have the same shape. I am weary of how my stories look, and I want to tell a different stories. My stories don’t have happy endings because that’s how my life was. I want people to feel what’s it’s like to have a mother who had a stroke. I want people to know what it feels like to be abandoned, I want people who don’t have that experience to know what’s its like growing up gay. So that you walk out of that theatre having gained an authentic experience of tribulation, and you learn from it .