The Creative Process in a Nutshell
Previously, we discussed creative design as an endeavor. This time, we’ll be discussing the basics of creative design as a procedure, and how most graphic artists start working on their layout drafts.
Be reminded, however, that the process generally varies with each graphic artist, as every person has his or her own process. But generally, this is how things are in the industry.
The Creative Process
Ahh, the creative process. The end-all, be-all holy grail of every creative type; whenever you see somebody with a MacBook sitting in one corner of a coffee shop, obsessing over the HTML code for a website he’s designing, you know you’d best steer clear lest get yourself bitten.
That’s just a stereotype, of course. Not every graphic artist gets so involved in the creative process that he can’t afford to take a break from work and talk to people for a bit.
But the fact remains that the process of creating art in any form is taxing. For a writer, he usually has to go through a rigorous phase of research in order to know what to write about. A graphic artist has to visualize what he has to create in order to put form to imagination. Upon completion, the layout editor has to put the visuals and the text together seamlessly.
In other words, if you strip away the romantic stereotyping the creative process is known for, you end up with a frustratingly difficult flow of work.
But the creative process can still be one of the most fulfilling jobs there is. It all boils down on your personal outlook.
Elements of Style
There are a variety of disciplines and skills that are important in creative design. A newcomer into the field of creative graphic design and advertising will probably have had experience it at least one of the following fields:
1. Visual arts. This is perhaps one of the most basic skills anybody needs in this industry. In order to have graphics to arrange in any given page, agencies need graphic designers who can create visuals needed. Depending on what the agency needs, you’ll be using visual elements created by hand, taken with photography, or made through computer-generated means.
2. When you deal with advertisement posters, advertorials on paper, and even website banner ads, you need the proper typographical skills to pull them off. The folks with typographical skills will take care of how your text will look like on the printed (or unprinted) page.
3. Layout artists will be the people in charge with putting these elements together. The best layout artists will be able to make an efficient and viewer-friendly. If you’re setting up a design firm, getting somebody with the skills to create an effective page layout is vital.
Process at Work
Once those three basic elements are gathered together, you’ve got the makings of a fledgling design team. Now it’s all a matter of getting them to function as a unit, and in order to do that, you need to apply the creative process.
The first step in this process is to brainstorm. You need to have an idea of what you want to see on paper. Ideally, the entire team should have input on how the execution should go, but the senior creative director should have the final say on what goes on paper.
Once you have a plan of attack, the artist should start making the graphics for the layout. At the same time, the team’s writer needs to start working on the text that goes with the ad page.
Upon completing the two elements, the layout artist and typographer are now to start putting the two elements together. After the layout is configured, the font and typography of the text will be determined and then added to the page.
If the completed product is approved by the creative director, the page then goes off to print or publishing, although this isn’t usually the case. Most of the time, you need to go through several revisions before the creative team comes up with a final cut that’s worth printing.
And that’s it for creative design 101, kids. Again, I hope you learned a lot in this session. Tune in again next time for more on the creative side of advertising. See you then!