Design is an actual job

I’m currently reading ‘Design Is a Job’ by Mike Monteiro. It’s a great book, and I’d recommend it to anyone working in design. Mike’s a web designer, but I’m sure his thoughts and stories could relate to any design sector.

Part of the book tackles the idea that design is some magical process that only creative types can understand. He argues that designers who perpetuate this myth are doing themselves and their industry a disservice.

I couldn’t agree more. I’m constantly struggling to define what design actually is, and I’m rubbish at explaining to people what I do. It’s far too easy to fall back on the ‘I just draw stuff and make stuff look cool’ cliché.

But design is a hard thing to explain. It’s not what I thought it was before I became a designer, and I’m sure most people have a similar mis-understanding of what it actually is.

It isn’t some whimsical hobby or dark art, it’s a job. An actual grown-up job. With processes, methods and tools. We get paid money by clients who want to improve the way that they communicate with or service their customers.

If this book teaches me anything, it’s that I need to be better at explaining what I do when people ask, otherwise I can’t complain when they don’t get it.

Right then, back to the rest of the book.