Why Storytelling is an Important Element in Graphic Design

By Jillean Kearney on December 11, 2015

Fast Company interviewed DJ Stout, a prolific 
Austin-based graphic designer that has been a partner at Pentagram since 2000. Previously, he held the title of art director at Texas Monthly, and he won many awards with the magazine. 

Throughout his 35-year career, Stout has successfully molded corporate identities. Stout's career is backed a singular mantra: "solve the problem, don't decorate".

"Like most designers, I don’t really start to conceive of an idea until I really understand what the problem is," Stout told Fast Company. "One of my philosophies is solve the problem, don’t decorate. And I think that maybe some designers get on the computer and start decorating and say, 'Oh I like this typeface' or, 'Oh I like these colors.' What I like to do is figure out what we’re trying to communicate and really get that in my head."

As a result of Stout's editorial background, he believes that storytelling is an important component of graphic design. Whether it’s a design or a package, it needs to tell you a story. It needs to tell you something," he said.

"The thing I like more than coming up with a logo is figuring out how it actually works in an identity systems to fulfill a client's needs," Stout said. "That’s where it gets in to storytelling—what are all the elements of the identity and how do they work together to tell a story."

Read more over at Fast Company.

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December 11, 2015
Categories:  Content Managers
Keywords:  Design

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