An interesting post over on Smashing Magazine talks about the dying art of design. The author argues that interest in design tools and resources (like the archive of vintage industrial adverts I posted a while ago) has overtaken the fundamental desire to know how to create an interesting piece of work.

The post gets an extra point from me for mentioning the first book about design I ever read; the seminal ‘How to draw comics the Marvel way’.

I think the author of the article has a point. The easy access to online tutorials and technical how tos (something I’m as guilty of producing as the next person) means our reading material contains less theory and a lot more practical advice. It’s my feeling that practical advice is great, but the theory needs to be there as well.

So, my advice is to start with Smashing Magazine’s post and begin thinking about why you do things, whether you are a designer, a writer or a technical PR or marketing thinker, as well as just ‘how-to’ do things.

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