2010

Modern design communication fails to engage our tactile senses. In an age where the majority of messages are delivered digitally, this preferences our eyes and ears over the remaining senses and as a result, the touch or ‘tactile’ senses are being neglected. Imagine a child born into a digital world where they no longer get to touch the ‘real thing’. What happens to us when there is no longer a stored memory of textures? As a child, touching rough, smooth and a variety of different textures to discover what they ‘feel’ like is essential to developing an understanding of our world (Elgin 1997). Since the introduction of digital technology into our everyday lives however, the computer mouse, keyboards, trackpads, and touch screens are fast becoming the main textures we spend our day touching (Bergmann 2010). If we as graphic communicators ignore the tactile, we are missing out on delivering some valuable sensory information by neglecting touch in the communication equation. My studio research seeks to discover if engaging with touch and re-imagining the digital aesthetic as analogue ‘one-offs’ are effective ways for graphic designers to reinvigorate their creativity and enrich visual communication within the digital landscape. The desktop computer has ultimately been responsible for a wealth of changes to the graphic design landscape. Typography as an art form, is also undergoing reinvention as a result of the digital revolution, but type usage is still embedded within graphic design as a primary tool of communication. Typography as an art, if it is to be preserved, must have a clear and renewed focus as a visual art form.