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Visual Literacy

Visual Literacy: Why Aren’t You Really Good At Graphic Design?

Seth Godin has a knack for cutting to the heart of issues for marketers. In today’s post, Why Aren’t You Really Good At Graphic Design, he addresses one part of a much larger issue.


“Ten years ago, you had a wide range of excuses for being a lousy visuals person. Starting with no talent, leading to no skill and going from there.

But now, in a world where it is expected that professionals will be able to make beautiful powerpoint slides, handsome business cards, clever bio photos and a decent website, it’s as important as driving. And easier to learn and do, and requiring less talent.”

Sure, designing handsome business cards and beautiful PowerPoint is important for anyone in a marketing-related field. Even more important to your outward visual appearance is the need to understand how to judge color on a proof sheet, or look for encoding problems in digital video.

Just as you’re expected to catch typographical and grammatical errors in written communication, your job requires improving your visual literacy skills to communicate in photographs, logos, designs, video and motion graphics.

These skills are far more valuable than designing your own business cards. Try this exercise; read Vision and Art: The Biology of Seeing as a starting point. Then, hire a graphic designer to design your business cards. Not only will you have professional-quality business cards, but you’ll see exactly why the money was well spent









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