Starfish: Creativity awakens

Zack Walker

May this farce be with you.

I’m proud to admit that I still check to see if my midichlorian count has increased to the point of allowing me to use the force. I’m close… I can feel it.

Seriously, Star Wars is awesome. I’ve loved it ever since I saw the first 3 movies as a kid. With the release of the 7th movie, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (It’s a great movie. Don’t worry if you haven't seen it, this blog post is spoiler-free), the “force” has been on my mind a lot. I’ve always pondered ideas of the series—the force (a binding, metaphysical, and ubiquitous power in the fictional universe of Star Wars [Wikipedia†]), Jedi (embodiment of good), and the Sith (opposite of the Jedi, and total ass-hats)—and how these characters relate to my profession and life (yes, I’m a nerd). While pondering said ideas, I had a colossal realization.

Design is the force.

Like the force, design is invisible. It is a system that guides and binds the visual nature of things. Some are born with the curiosity to discover it, while some never believe or understand it. (Special thanks for the excellent Jedi Academy of Design at the University of Central Oklahoma for helping me understand these mystical theories.) We use these skills, acquired from an understanding of design, to extract the ideas from your mind—even some you didn’t know existed—and project them as compelling visuals for everyone to see. That, my little padawans, is mind control.

Those who are fortunate enough to understand and wield design will choose a path to travel: the light or dark side. I’ve seen both types of designers throughout my journey in design. Those of “Jedi” caliber are quick to help, provide constructive feedback, keep ethical practices, avoid plagiarism, and strive to produce their own ideas/designs while working in the design field. Those who prefer the “Sith” way (the dark way) take pleasure in destructive feedback, have no humility, and often take others’ ideas while claiming ownership as their own. Once you slip into the dark side, your creativity dies. Remember, no one likes the aforementioned ass-hats.

Design forms a circular relationship with its wielder; one cannot exist without the other. Like the force, design never dies. It is perpetuated through good creativity and must be kept alive and well by those who value it dearly.

Enjoyed my article. I hope you did.