Well, you may, by now, have an inkling that I’m working on a proposal for my Design and the Marketplace module. Well, okay, it’s all my blog is filled with nowadays, but it’s busy times, so I don’t have time to fill it with non-assessable material. But all the rambly introductions aside…
I have finished writing my business proposal! Not to panic anybody who has yet to finish off their own.
As I said in previous posts, I’ve taken this business proposal to be more of a market research opportunity, to scout the field for the most innovative and unusual developments in the motion design industry and see how it can be applied in new areas and to new markets. I aim to see how motion graphics can solve problems in markets currently covered by other areas of design, or perhaps not covered by design at all. It’s important to firstly consider motion graphic’s strengths as an industry to see what needs it may fulfill, particularly over other specialisms within graphic design.
I start my proposal talking about the real innovator in motion graphics: Saul Bass. If you aren’t familiar with the man’s work yet then familiarise yourself now. It’s epic. As is the man behind the designs. Nobody can pull off that stout figure and mustache with quite as friendly a demeanor as Bass did. But more importantly he used the strengths of motion graphics to do a task only motion graphics could do – film title sequences. It wasn’t the forte of filmmakers, as made evident by decades of bland lists of names acting as a barrier to the narrative. It wasn’t even some animators understood, who took lead from filmmakers. Instead it required graphic design’s rational sensibility to order otherwise bland information and make it pertinent to the film’s purpose, as opposed to just… well, credits. Typographic creativity and awareness of ‘the big picture’ made Bass’s title sequences a sensation.
But that’s old news. Maybe we can take advantages such as this and apply it to somewhere else where bland and scientifically organised date is acting as a barrier between people and the information the authors want to disseminate. Infographics is another perfect example of this. It created a whole new demand in it’s initial inception, but was something that had been around for an age before designers got their hands on it. What I mean to say is that pie charts and bar graphs were nothing new – but doing something interesting with them most definitely was. Visual representation of data is nothing new, but applying design thinking to it adds a whole new twist on how the task is approached and recieved. Motion is sometimes added to this, but it’s much in the same fashion as pre-Bass film credits.
Take, for example, rolling 24hr news. Modern news runs on such tight schedules it barely has time to put together its written information coherently, never mind it’s imagery. Visuals on news stories are often cheap, tired and clichéd, and that isn’t even considering the motion or infographic aspect of visuals on the news. Ultimately communication should be clean and clear, but this alone doesn’t make the communication effective. As Bass demonstrated something can be mundane and straight-forward but that can be overbearing and damage communication through lack of interest. Perhaps this is the next gap motion graphics could fill…
But we’ll see. If BBC News want to give me a job off this blog post (and my sterling portfolio) then let it be so. If not… well, I’ll crawl back into my coursework cave. Good day to you!