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Can Science Inform Graphic Design?

June 20 @ 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Tom White asks, “How does someone go from Rocket Science to Graphic Design?” While many aspects of graphic design necessitate creativity and an artistic approach, he bases his work and execution around a more scientific mindset. But he’s not talking about AI!

According to White, a great professor once said, “Graphic designers are problem solvers,” and he finds more and more each day how accurate his lesson was. No matter what the problem may be, a graphic designer should be able to produce a relevant, logical, interesting, and intellectual solution. Anything less, according to White, would make said professor “barf, and go blind.”

Graphic Design is not a thing, rather it’s a process, an idea, a message that hones the fundamentals of graphic design such as:

  • The Gestalt Theory (the sum of the whole is greater than its parts).

  • Verbal + Visual = Message.

  • The three factors that define a relevant and logical solution: 1) the nature of the problem, 2) the audience, and 3) the functional parameters).

Good design comes from extensive research and great attention to detail, and it always contains a solid intellectual concept. Bad design, on the other hand, as White’s professor so eloquently put it, “should be nuked with the whales.”

The professor’s last words of encouragement were blunt: “Now go out there, create world-class graphic design, and knock the world on its ass.”

And so, world-class graphic designer as he is, that is Tom White’s challenge and goal. With each new problem he solves, he must find a way to catch the world off guard. He must find a way to disrupt its balance, and then with one mighty blow, send it plummeting onto its rear end.

About the Presenter

Alan Gilbertson is a freelance designer and creative director living in the Tampa Bay area of Florida, the “Sun Coast” of the United States. A self-confessed nerd, he loves messing with software to see if it will break, so he has been a beta tester of various products for more than three decades, including all of the Adobe design suite.

Alan is an Adobe Community Expert, a regular contributor to CreativePro Magazine and the Adobe Community Forums, and can occasionally be found wandering the exhibition halls at design conferences looking for coffee and donuts.


June 20
3:00 pm - 6:00 pm
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CA United States