I recently was asked, "How do you separate art from design and is art design?"A student from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) emailed me recently with this question because of how it reflected on my work and what I do.
I think that specifically in the United States there has always been a separation of art and design where in Europe they are closer tied. One has a function while the other is to express. With design your given a brief from the director or client on examples of what they want, their goal, and what it is they want to achieve with the design, colors, fonts, sizes etc. Art on the other hand can be anything. With me, art and design doesn't really have a separation, the line is very blurry. I never liked calling myself a "graphic designer" especially when I studied other fields within the art realm. Personally graphic design is limited and I grew up learning that anyone can do this. Anyone can open up Illustrator or Photoshop and design something simple for their need. But it takes an artist to push the boundary of the graphic design to create something aesthetically pleasing and motivating. Yes Graphic design is part of what I do and I usually incorporate it with my art through producing a nice typographic layout, poster design, a short animation or presentation layout. I do this because it allows me to try new things, and allows me to expand on the artwork itself so it isnt just an image standing alone. I believe that by having elements of graphic design in an image is a work of art itself. To me, everything is art, there would of never been human development if art was not involved. With clients you do need to know the separation between art and design, but for personal projects, you may incorporate the two. Unless you have a client that wants a artwork and you incorporate graphic design with it.
This is my own thought, if you have an idea or thought to this, please comment and discuss it.