blog post: january 24, 2016
On "multi-fruit" design
If you have ever looked for a juice, then you know that along with the pure orange, apple, peach, and mango juices there are mixed type of juices, such as: orange-mango, apple-peach, cranberry-cheery, and others. At the head of the table cheerfully sits “multi-fruit” juice.
The thing is — I hate multi-fruit juices. I hate them, because I think that a "multi-fruit" is created out of juices that do not taste well, if consumed separately. You actually don’t know how to judge it, because there was no such taste before, and your stomach and your brain do not know how to interpret it. Where is the summer weather, that you resemble with eating fine fresh apples, and where is that grape village, that you associate with eating perfect grapes? They are gone.
Bad design is like “multi-fruit” juice — a messy mixture of styles, contexts, and associations. In “multi-fruit” design you get interested by the look, but then you don’t know how this design was intended to make you feel. When designer doesn't know for sure what he is doing, he’s creating a “multi-fruit” design — deliverable, that is beaming with concepts and ideas. But if you let yourself examine those ideas separately, they all sound like weak ideas.
Clean, good ideas, just like good pure juice are rare, since you have to be able to justify it’s quality against defined list of criteria. Most expensive products of either graphic, industrial, or fashion design — is sublime work with the least amount of materials, typefaces, and styles. And exactly because of that, simple products are more expensive than it’s “multi-fruit” alternative. And maybe this is why clients, that are producing a weak product, are asking for “multi-fruit” design, as to not let customers understand what are they really paying for.