Vin Hoffman

What Is Design? | January 26, 2009

Defining design is just as tedious as counting the stars.  Design is under the “art” umbrella.  In a humorous way, I picture “art” as the universe and “design” the stars within it.  The real question that is circling through my mind, “Does function follow design, or does design follow function?”  Dyson’s definition of design is based on the functionality of his vacuums.  Dyson states that, “how something works, not how it looks – the design should evolve from the function.”  In simpler terms, Dyson is saying that design follows function.  I don’t entirely agree with Dyson.  I believe that function can also come after the design as well.  There is no real equation where design can be slotted.  Design can stand alone as in a painting or it can be used in a functional vacuum.   Design aims to get attention in one form or another and  attracts an audience in order to succeed.  In order for design to survive and flourish its definition must change and be redesigned.  This is caused by our ever changing life landscape with time.  Our tastes, styles, culture, and needs are continually changing as with the definition of design.


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