As someone, who was late to the whole design thing and tries to figure it out on the way, I'm pretty sure the author would describe myself, my 'taste' and my work as part of the mediocre movement - and probably rightfully so: More than anybody I'm aware of my influences, my decisions and the quality of my work. And I'd like to improve.
However, when reading all those 'Dribbble is ruining design, there is nothing original today, trends everywhere'-articles I can't help but feel that some old men are complaining about the youth.
Please, give me some concrete advice! What should I do? And tell me in a way I understand without feeling belittled. Advice like 'start at the roots of the craft, build up from a strong foundation' sound like platitudes, which don't help me at all.
I have no illusion of being the greatest artist of all time after doing a little interface design. However, I'm also slowly getting past the point where I'm completely unhappy with my work without knowing what to improve. I know, that I still have a lot to learn, but at the same time I start to see and appreciate my own progress.
Articles like this don't help me on my way, but leave me feeling insulted by first diminishing my progress and then leaving without real advice.
Hey Florian, first of all thanks for posting this. Do not be discouraged.
To me this felt like the author was throwing his toys out the pram. It’s the classic I was into ‘x’ before it was cool. I knew I was in for a rough time when he started comparing himself to the great masters, let’s have a least a little humility shall we?
I get it though, it’s scary how many young talented designers are emerging every day, but that’s just testament to a great supportive community, one that I feel this author is letting down. A renaissance doesn’t happen with silos of the most talented people striving alone. Great change happens when people support one another and build on each others progress. Perhaps letterers have paved the cowpaths and now technology and trend have aligned to allow more people to enjoy the practise of lettering. That is fantastic news, we’re on the cusp of something great.
I hope all veteran designers know, you shouldn’t have any need to be worried about this influx of creative talent either. Great letters should have great clients, clients who understand the benefits of hiring a vet. As a web designer I know the jobs I did as a graduate aren’t the kind of jobs I want to be doing now, but I loved doing them at the time.
Also please create the next daily type or good type. He’s wrong, there aren’t enough of them out there. You don’t have to make things for others, make it for yourself. Build resources to help yourself. If somebody else finds it and they like it, great! You can learn together, ask for feedback, improve together. Not everyone lives in a place with a strong designer community, but we can find and build them online. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.
So lettering isn’t for everyone? I’m glad he told me breathing WAS for everyone, other wise I wouldn’t have even tried.
Best of luck Florian.
Excuse us Michelangelo ahahah
I was just surprised to learn this article is from the same guy who wrote this, which is essentially ridiculing opinions very similar to this.
I'm not trying to pick a bone with Ryan, and I genuinelly think he didn't actually mean everyone who's below his skill level should just stop putting out subpar work, instead of continuing to drill through the mediocrity until getting there. I think I got his point that some people are trying to jumpstart their career by skipping the first and most important bits of learning a craft, and I can even sympathize with it, but there is definitely something about the way he writes that makes you feel like he's being judgemental of other people's progress — I got that as well.
Oh, somebody's really full of himself.
If I remember correctly he posted a while ago an apology to letterer's like Hische, Contino etc for ripping them off quite a bit when he started out. I.e. copying their style to make his own. Which is what everybody does, and in my opinion has to, to develop their own style. Not 'rip them off' per say, but at least use them as influences a lot. It's natural.
Which perpetuates this 'mediocre' world he's talking about.
Although on the other hand, I do get frustrated seeing very bad 'typographers' getting a ton of likes on instagram etc. But then I remember the difference between instagram and real-life and move on with my day.
I get pretty frustrated by quotes like this, "The art of the time became far more sophisticated, introducing concepts like perspective, and valuing realism like never before."
I think the most important thing to note here is "valuing realism." It's not that the art that came before was "less sophisticated", it's that values were different. I don't blame a minimalist painting for not being blown glass--they are different, and that doesn't make one more mature.
I would say two years ago realism was valued more (see this classic site http://www.flatvsrealism.com/ ), but I tend to think we're getting more 'sophisticated'.
Very nice read, thanks for sharing. I wonder if the phenomenon that's described is due or amplified by the constant communication we are in: always seeing what's popular, always having something to feed on rather, never having time to dabble, etc. Thus a solution to the conformism of the taste or the craft would be isolation.
Word is bond.