March 04, 1997

Automatic Design Machine

by Santi

// From a Communication Design student to a professional graphic designer working as Company's employee and freelance designer as well as the role of university teacher give me the intelligent thinking, visions and appreciation that have been changing at all time.

When I was going to finish my education and I aimed, at the time, to be a graphic designer, I had my intention, determination and confidence that I was more than ever ready for this sort of profession. So when I started to work in a company for my profession I was quite happy. I tried to produce my best works and intended to learn all kind of production processes as much as I could. But when the time by, I discovered that my determination, confidence, especially my full desire of self-contained had been gradually decreased as if I was becoming " an automatic design machine ". What made me feel like that? the company I was working for? my colleagues? or customer? I think the answer is I put the pressure on myself for what had happened in the designing business I was confronting at that moment. I did not want to modify design works with the reason that was not a real reason: the reason of believing, feeling or personal refined taste. I had only the thought of being an ordinary graphic designer whose duty was to achieve the assigned works completely.

From there I had changed my status to be a freelance designer hoping that I could utilize the working environment flexibility to produce more of qualified design work. But it did not be as I expected. I became " an automatic design machine " once more. That was because of the worthy of trusts and vision of customers given to the freelance graphic designer like myself was far less than those who are working for the company. The direct contact with customers produced numerous odds either the working concept or even the art direction which it should be a duty in decision making performed by a designer. Self pressure was back but this time I was ready to deal with such pressure and began to look for the way out ahead.

Presently I changed my role to be an instructor in Communication Design Departmemt, School of Fine and Applied Arts, Bangkok University. I still accept some design jobs if they respect and believe in me.
I think teaching in university produces the pressure as well but this is the positive pressure:
1. Try to seek more knowledges successively in order to learn to know differently in both theoretical and practical process can be brought to communicate with students understandably and up to date.
2. The determination to make out good design work by students I think it depends upon our design works performances that must express the quality and determination of those performances as well.

As of now I think I am ready with good appreciation for both designer and teacher. With this appreciation I still put the pressure on myself. I think I do not have enough potential either for my knowledges, experiences, or the international existence which are the necessary factors to the world environments in the present an in the future that I could resond to my appreciation completely.

My decision at this time, therefore, is the significent step in seeking more knowledges, experiences and international existence for myself either in the way of perspectives, ideas and methods that I am going to express effectively both in my design work and teaching.

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