I realize there is a broad group of users here that are from many different countries with different cultures and languages but, I was wondering how people might feel about the use of two terms commonly used to describe creatives. The terms I am referring to are 'artist' and 'designer'.
So, do you feel these two labels are equal in value and meaning? That would mean that either term can be used with same definition. Such as "Dali was a great artist of the past." or "Dali was a great designer of the past." would be the same to you.
Or do you feel that each has its own meaning and only linked by the larger genre in which they exist? That means you might use 'artist' to describe a a painter or someone who draws but maybe use 'designer' to describe someone that might create commercial advertising layouts or other desktop publishing works. Such as "Dali was a great artist but the college student in my advertising class is a better designer."
Not sure if there is really a correct answer to any of this but just wanted to see how many might consider the two different as I have for many years. I have always called the creative people who draw, paint or sculpt to be artists. While I do consider myself to be an artist, I usually play the designer role most often where I create layouts more than illustrate but can do both if needed.
I am sure many fall into same category where they do both as well. But, here's another point to consider. Are photographer's artists? They capture often more than create but it's often said many good togs make the photo, not take it considering post processing and other in camera styles applied.
One could say maybe 'artist' is like the main section label where the above terms and many other creative topics just define it better. What does everyone else think?
Interesting points Dean. In my point of view, the term "artist" can be used to describe/refer to any person who does creative work in any fields of art (visual arts, digital arts, photography, performing arts, design, etc.). That means the term "designer" is a more specific term to describe a person doing a specific work in art (which is design). Same as the idea of using the term "artist" to refer to a "musician" or "painter" or "dancer".
I agree with Kerby. The term "artist" is a collective term for all types of creative, while "designer" is just one of the specific title relating to a creative working in design.
You talk about a very interesting subject. This is my understanding.
Artist is some one who creates what was not exisited before, a new touch, a different view.
so yes designers are artists same as phtographers, because the way that look and create at objects (even commercial ideas) and capture it was not exisited before.
However, everything is so specillazied now even in art and creativity, if you can paint or draw you won't be a good commerical designer without studying more and learning in the field. If you are commercial designer you may not be able able to paint a picture.
Off course we have people that are good not just two but couple
In college, my classmates and I would regularly focus on this topic. The majority of opinions leaned more towards 'designer' and 'artist' as being completely different. 'Art' would more regularly be defined as creative expression through any type of visual means, whether it would be physically or digitally. On the other hand, design was defined more as problem solving. For example, the designer would always have a client or a project that would have an end-product relying on a specific set of requirements in order to appeal to a particular type of audience. In regards to art, there is rarely an audience that defines the project's success. Instead, art would have more general guidelines if it was necessary, such as if the art was being put together as a collaboration for artists at a particular studio. When an artist is given a project, they wouldn't be required to use a specific set of colors, values, lines, typography, or even subject matter to an extent. I guess a more simple way to look at it would be to think about how artists focus on themselves and how they can express through their work, while designers may work for themselves, but the work is almost always custom to someone else's specifications. But, can an artist be a designer? I think so. Can a designer be an artist? Not always.
In regards to photography, I think it may need its own classification or category. In school, photography usually isn't taught in art courses or design courses. It is usually taught separately as a more technical skill. I say this more because I don't think a raw photo is ever a design all on its own. However, a photo can compliment a design, such as in magazine, layout, poster, brochure, and web designs. If a photographer was classified as a designer, I think it would be more in photo manipulation due to the problem solving that is required. Although, photography would better be classified more by the particular area that the shooting is being done, such as for commercial, personal, and artistic purposes.
Great topic, and some good replies as well. The way I understand it is that art has a focus of evoking emotional response from the viewer, whereas design focuses on communicating a message and evoking a reaction to that message (call to action). Certainly there are artistic aspects that apply to design and vice versa, and this is why they are so commonly interchanged. "Art" is such a broad term that many argue it can be applied to the creation of just about anything. However "design" is not as malleable. I would be comfortable calling graphic designers "visual artists" as they are required to meticulously create and present ideas in a visual format that best suits a given target audience. However I don't feel that you can call all or even the majority of visual artists, "designers".