Sunday, November 23, 2008

THE SENSES | leilani

"Every facet of the design process has to maintain a relationship with the senses. When you confront an object, you've got to touch it, smell it, listen to it... "

I wonder if Bruno Munari will ever know what he’s started. I can just imagine the people around the world that will take him word for word and touch the intangible, smell the unscented, or listen to things that were never meant to make sound. One things for sure, I might end up designing packaging for a toilet seat cover, but there’s no way I’ll be licking it.

Or will I?

I digress --- [and yes, I do know what that means]

I suppose what Munari is suggesting is that knowing a product is the key to designing for it. Can you design for coffee label without knowing the dark, rich, sweet love that caffeine-addict knows? Of course. But that doesn’t guarantee that what you produce will be effective. Neither does being the primary consumer for a product mean that you will design something that suits the product well. Love can be just as destructive as indifference. Any working designer knows that it would be impossible [if you want to eat] to have the all candlelight dinners and moonlight beach walks required for an intrepid romance, with every object that comes through your door.

A good design encompasses everything that the object stands for, and promotes it to the consumer accordingly. I also think that part of what he meant is that a design shouldn’t just satisfy the eyes, but the rest of the senses as well. Touch is one of the most overlooked. I know for myself, I like things with texture, shape, a differentiation in surface. Gloss, and matte. Rough and smooth. Its not just about how it affects you visually, but it’s the way it stirs the rest of the senses too.

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