“But the impressionist work is not a moment captured in time, like a photograph, but an image that evokes the ongoing play and movement of light and color in the experience of looking.”—Practices of Looking, Sturken/Cartwright
A recent project that I was working on required us to create a simple icon that any consumer should be able to instantly recognize. I thought to myself, “Oh, that should be easy.” No, it wasn’t easy. The prof told the class that we had to use a grid (hexagon, triangle or square) with specific divisions (photo) to create the icon. I was really confused, and I didn’t know where to start.
Being given a restraint, I was forced to think outside the box while working within the grid. I was really frustrated during the early stage since I was producing pretty ugly icons. Icons that do not look like chicken, or they do but it’s only because I’ve told myself so. Later on, I was able to accept that I will make ugly things and it’s not a problem. It’s part of the process into making effective and better designs. I’m satisfied with my final icon, and I’d like to believe that I am the best chicken icon maker in my class.
Ultimately, the point of the assignment was to experiment and study the grid, and push its limitations. It also reminded me that the design field—or life in general—would always have boundaries and conditions that I have to live with and work my way around.