04/09/2005

Websites, Design and Art

It strikes me that there's an ongoing, though usually unspoken, argument that web design isn't really art, and so should not be approached with an artiste attitude. Actually, these are separate issues.

No one really likes to deal with a prima donna attitude; why face unpleasantness for no reason? Worse, an always-dismissive attitude towards others' ideas gives one sure result: a refusal to look results in the inability to see.

This applies to anyone. As I always say: you're only right when you're right.

So, is web design art? True, we're not talking about designing a fabulously large statue at the mouth of the harbor simply for the breathtaking beauty of it all — art for art's sake. Such art does what all art does: communicate.

And there's the issue: web design falls into the same category, but it is actually purposed art, art used for the purpose of communicating on a website. Art … the use of color, placement, cohesiveness, beauty, direction of the eye and attention … all for the purpose of communicating.

A web page without art does communicate, but it is simply reams of HTML-ized text and can be darned hard to read. Yes, you say, but even plain text can be presented elegantly and artfully. Oops … there's that word art again.

2 Comments to "Websites, Design and Art"

  1. teli says:

    if a child can use something like macaroni to create art, why can't we use html? :)

    life is art.

  2. DianeV says:

    Exacto-mundo, my friend.

    I once watched a bunch of Japanese tourists examining a can opener closely. I call that:

    design + functionality = engineering design

    You know. Like Ferrari.

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