I recently attended The InDesign Conference. A speaker from Adobe asked the crowd to consider what designers would be doing 5 years from now. A number of opinions were shared. As our presenter described the "hats" a designer might wear, it became clear the jobs will involve creation of print and—increasingly—interactive graphics.
If you're a designer, your tool set (and mine) will include Flash, HTML5 and Dreamweaver. XML will be a language you will embrace as much as your native tongue. You will design for mobile (and maybe 3D) devices. Your design services will include ebooks of various forms. The t-square and triangle of the 1970's graphic designer will seem prehistoric in comparison with your tools of the future.
Some things about graphic design won't change. Designers will still prepare design briefs. Designers will still have to analyze the visual problem, define it cogently, and execute the most effective solution for their clients. The sense of wonder, passion and excitement we bring to design solutions will still be needed. Thinking and sketching before firing up Illustrator or Photoshop CS10 will still be essential. As our profession continues to change, effective designers will continue to do more with less.
I've been tremendously blessed to be in a field that impacts how people think, learn, purchase and consume. I hope I will have many more years to change (though at times painful) and grow. I hope you do too. Let's do it with a desire for excellence. Not for rewards or awards; let's be difference makers because 5 years from now design—and the people we impact—will still matter.
For what I learned at this conference I thank my manager Tom and my company for making it possible for me to attend. I thank Mogo-Media and Ascend Training for sponsoring the event. For friendship and helping me sharpen my skills, thanks Tina, Brenda, Matt, Don, Anne, Anne-Marie, Shellie, Eda, and Chris.
More thanks to come next time. Happy Thanksgiving!