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Friday, September 24, 2010

Back to Artistry...

So my point after all the training talks is that IT skills, just like graphic arts skills, involve a certain amount of artistry.   There is an artistry to mathematical logic (which is the basis for database queries and programming) just as there is to visual arts.

The lack of understanding in this regard by the print service industry is to me very interesting.  No one ever says, "Wow, you were really clever with your queries to get that list of recipients cleaned up that way!"

On the other hand, I don't know of any IT-type who, when presented with a clever or stylish ad layout didn't take notice or at least didn't show some respect for the designer.

So what is the cause of this "lack of respect" for the artistry of IT?

We can start by looking here.  There is a clever optical illusion and a sort of list of "left" and "right" brain "characteristics" shared by people with think with the left or right side of their brains.  Now this is old ground but I think it gives you an interesting picture.

On the "right brain" side we see, among other things, "use of feeling", "imagination", "symbols and images", and "spatial perception".  I guess these must be the graphic arts types.  You'll notice that this list (from the link above) mostly involves visual elements - either externally in terms of images or internally in terms of imagination.

On the "left brain" side we see "logic", "detail oriented", "facts", "math and science", and "order/pattern perception".  Traditionally this is the domain of science.  Not nearly as much here in the area of visual perception - internal or external.

So I believe that the "right brainers" - the artsy types - really don't get the science and math elements involved in the IT aspects of the VDP/transpromo type work.  Its not that they don't want to get it, its that they are not wired to get it.  I believe the reason is that the IT-type work is not visual in nature - its much more focused on logic, math, and other non-image-related thinking.

The "left brainers", on the other hand, though perhaps not visual, still can have an appreciation of the visual - after all most everyone uses their eyes everyday - even if they don't use visual things to make a living.

While what I say here may or may not be true, there is a completely different take on the left-brain/right-brain issue here.  This splits the thinking not in terms of visual but in terms of gender.

So while the graphic arts industry is dominated principally by "right brainers" its very unlikely that your going to get much appreciation for the IT side of things - no matter how clever.

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