Arts & Entertainment, Design & Style

An Intuitive Approach to Design

David Carson

Lesson time 09:09 min

David introduces some of his guiding principles. He encourages you to rely on intuition, push yourself to take risks, and develop a mentality that keeps you attuned to unpredictable moments that can make your work better.

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Topics include: Case Study: Don’t Be Neutral • Case Study: Help People Notice • Case Study: Don’t Miss What Happens Along the Way


[MUSIC PLAYING] - Everybody has intuition. It's not a matter of teaching people to have it, but it is a matter of teaching yourself maybe to listen to it more. If you can become aware that it's out there, and it's important, and it usually has good answers for you, to listen to it and utilize it as a design tool. For this part, I'll be showing my work and explaining why it looks the way it does. CREW: Lights. Let's roll. - But the point is to show you that there's a reason, what sometimes appears chaotic or random, is almost never the case. Graphic design has gotten pretty conservative and automatic and I think has lost a lot of the rebelness-- is that word-- rebellioness-- that word. There aren't as many rebels in graphic design. And it's gotten so clean and sanitary. And so, I think for the profession to stay kind of vital or important, that we still need somebody that says, oh, says who? Why not? Why can't I do this? Because a big part of design is to get somebody to want to come into your store, to pick up your book, to click on your site, to walk across the street and read the fine print. You know, if you've done your job as a designer, people will do that. They'll want to do that. I have an example here. This was a window display for a store in a shopping mall, and they had some issues on this about readability. But I think this in a boring shopping mall window display would have gotten people's attention, and maybe they stop, and maybe they look in the door. But we'll never know. It never came very close to being accepted but I think a bit of a missed opportunity. I was asked by a hotel in Amsterdam to come up with the numbers for the floors. We see here, the word two. But it says nothing. That's nonsense. That doesn't say anything in any language. But we all read it, and really the word is an image. And maybe it's more interesting, especially getting off an elevator in a hotel that is trying to be kind of hip and current and fun, and of course, you got it right away. I am trusting my own judgment and intuition on that. I know it's a three. I know it's a four. I know they're all readable, even though I say it's not a word. Okay, this works really good. The I and the x are shorter and I in the middle. The five was pretty great but this is maybe even better. People looking at existing things and using them in new ways sounds kind of trite, but I think that's a big job of the designer-- to get people looking again, noticing again. I'm never without my phone. And if I go for a walk in a new city or something and I don't have my phone, I have to go back because I'm going to see something. Some shape, some texture, some color registers, and then I'm doing a layout and somehow I think that works its way into your work. What we're seeing here is just something that caught my eye. And this is shape, color, texture. It's not to copy them exactly, but it registered as something that your mi...

About the Instructor

From Ray Gun and Transworld Skateboarding magazines to surfboards and potato chip bags, David Carson changed the trajectory of graphic design by never following the rules or sticking to the grid. Now the pioneering designer is sharing his intuitive approach so you can send a message with boundary-breaking work. Explore typography, photography, logo design, and more as you learn how to make an impact and trust your gut.

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David Carson

Pioneering graphic designer David Carson teaches you his intuitive approach to creating work that breaks rules and makes an impact.

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