This may come as a shock to some people. I used to believe that in order to be a good designer, one must be a great sketcher/artist. It took years for me to learn that this is not the case.
Let me explain.
It’s possible to be able to do both - and it is in fact ideal. If a great designer has great sketching and visual communication abilities then she has a leg up on those who do not share this ability. If you’re able to freely communicate your ideas and put them down on paper (or digitally) so others can understand your intent - you have a great skill. It takes years of practice and dedication to be great at this ability. Some people are amazing at it in fact.
However - we also have to consider that there are plenty of great illustrators and artists (in the traditional sense) that are not able to design. They can illustrate. They can communicate. But, they are not designers. Creating form and creating a functional product that can be manufactured in large scale are two very different things.
Ideas. That’s the thing that separates the two groups. There are those who have ideas, and those who do not. Those who have ideas and can execute them are the good designers. Those who can only sketch - can only sketch.
If someone’s out there who thinks that they can’t design because they’re unable to sketch - take a look at the sketches bellow from Phillipe Stark.
And take a look at the resulting product.
There’s no reason to shy away from creating products even if you’re unable to sketch. If you have a purpose driven idea, if you’re trying to create something new and meaningful, something better - then go ahead and create it. Inability to sketch may just be an excuse to slow yourself down.
Dmitry N. Rusakov
This series of content is a small experiment. I pledged to create a piece of content on my site for the next 365 days. You can read the opening post here. The posts aren’t limited to thoughts or ideas, they’re really just a way for me to create original content. If you got any feedback/questions, please reach out. Thanks for looking.