Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Comfort Zones

Will I make 100% of my graphics be Disney based? Will I design 100% for World War II related information? Will I make 100% of my designs in perfectly aligned Helvetica?


The true of the matter is, we all have a place where we are safe and comfortable. We take our favorite colors and wrap them around us like a blanket. We take our favorite fonts and nestle our face into them like a pillow. And we build our dreams based upon this, fearful of the monster of "change" breathing down our necks.

Upcoming designers treat different ideas like the monster under the bed. We bury ourselves in our comfort zone afraid to peek out to some unknown darkness. We remain fearful because what we have looks good! It looks safe and uniformed. We can't go wrong with this! Or can we?

Designers, myself included, need to pull those covers down and face that monster down. Clients will tell us "NO" more times than they tell us "YES". It's a fact of life. Our style, as daringly great as it may be, remains ours. We like it! But for a client of frilly handmade baby diapers, maybe Helvetica and black/red isn't the best combination to represent the company! It is our challenge to understand their company, vision, and message. It is our burden to touch fonts and colors we may not like simply to make our customers happy. We are wrapped in our blankets blissfully unaware that we are becoming prey! Prey to the dreaded "COMFORT ZONE".

We need to change. We need to adapt. We need to stop HIDING in comfort and get out there to see what our talents teach us: a bunch of CRAP (Contrast, Repetition, Alignment, Proximity).  The font and colors do not make a design. We do.

And I'm beginning to pull the covers off and wield my sword of creativity against the monsters attempting to intimidate me back into my cocoon of Helvetica.

So why don't you?