Design is not something you can just “whip up”, by thinking of a solution after being given a task and saying you are finished. Richard MacCormac put it very well, “I don’t think you can design anything just by absorbing information and then hoping to synthesize it into a solution. What you need to know about the problem only becomes apparent as you’re trying to solve it.”
Design is all about process. Process is all about failure. This is one thing I know for sure since coming to Greensboro this fall to embark on this scary, overwhelming, yet exhilarating and rewarding journey that is becoming a designer. Starting on the first design tasks was very daunting; you are given instruction and have to think creatively, coming up with a design solution by a certain deadline, which gave me an enormous feeling of pressure during the early projects. Then after some experience working on these crazy projects, I realized that each time I came up with a “solution” something was wrong with it. I had failed. But these failures led to great discoveries and “aha” moments, forcing me to design the same project over and over again until they showed significant improvement. This gave me more confidence in myself, and a drive to always figure out what it is I can do to make my work better. This could be looking at similar works of previous designers, talking to professors, peers, or just looking at my work again in a few moments time, trying to discern what should be changed about my work to make it come closer to the goal of the project. After failures have occurred, thought, precedence and community brings a designer into final stages of refinement and a great result.