Mary Lim

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

hcd: response + iterations

Response to article
see article here:

The article seemed to pinpoint what I've been ruminating about recently. I think it goes back to the workshop with Casey Ligon. The workshop was awesome, however one thing that bothered me was definitely not Casey, but her clients. It seemed like they prioritized the speed of her production rather than appreciating the actual intricacies of the work itself. Though the article takes a more economic standpoint, I think the mentality that "more is better" has become deeply embedded into society in all aspects of life. When I think about the older generations, quality seemed to have more of a priority over quantity. Though I cannot say for sure if this were true, from what I've seen, there is less and less appreciation for thoroughness and attention to detail, like the old arts of calligraphy, and more about the speed at which we can produce so as to consume more. "More" comes at the cost of authenticity, and we lose a sense of what matters. I, too, am a result of a society that values quantity over quality, and have often succumbed to glancing over the ultimate purpose and goals and instead focus on "getting it done" (or speed of production). Unfortunately, like the article suggests, the economy rigorously continues in this state, and can only be stopped by a mass shift in people's mentality. 

And graphic design may have played a role in this issue. As it is directly correlated with how people consume, design sometimes heavily relies on trends and plays on the current climate of society.
Whether advertising has created this mentality or is a response to it is unclear, however, I think design is no doubt strongly linked to how we live. 

Despite the fact that happiness does not come from wealth is something that's already understood and researched, the appeal of wealth stands unwaveringly strong. Ironically, unhappiness is actually a result of how people spend. On the belief that "more is better," it has led to spending more than what people make.

The article offers a solution: 
"...internalizing costs instead of externalizing them as most businesses do today. It lessens the enormous wealth gap between those who can't even meet their basic needs and those who consume way more than their fair share. And it values the truth that happiness and well-being don't come from buying more Stuff, but from our communities, our health and sense of purpose."
While design may have fed the issue, it has high potential to reverse it, and has at some points in the past. One thing that comes to mind is the Adbusters Media Foundation and their creation of anti-advertisements. The examples the article gave were hopeful as well, such as the Evergreen Cooperatives in Cleveland, and Zero Waste town. I wonder though, if the solution only solves environmental issues. I feel that it only scratches the surface of what the solution of this problem would bring about. I'm not exactly sure what it is, but it would definitely transform society for the better.



  1. Good work Mary! I really like the different approach you are taking with this. I'm really enjoying the first label you have. Its both fun and elegant at the same time. The second one is interesting also, but not my favorite. Maybe the use of white in the second and third iterations is what is off-putting to me. I think sticking with darker or more vibrant colors will work better for you. However, I do like the different ingredients shown in the second one, thats a nice incorporation.

  2. I like the type in the first label. It's fun and unexpected. I'm worried about losing that thin L on the black background. I like the second one where the ingredients are present outside of the mix but the white and the diagonal i worry are too overwhelming. Look at using a sans serif typeface as well and see if that would be strong. maybe combining the first and second idea? Those are the two I'm drawn to.