GOOD: an Introduction to Ethics in Graphic Design: Ethics of Graphic Design

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AVA Publishing, 2006 - Design - 199 pages

Consider this simple conundrum: is it possible to be a bad good designer or a good bad designer for that matter? If the answer is yes then which is preferable and what does this reveal about the relationship between ethics and design practice? Good: An Introduction to Ethics in Graphic Design seeks to answer these questions.

Graphic design is in ethical flux. Good comes at a time of growing disenchantment with style-led design solutions and the pursuit of self-expression alone and yet vacuous design judgements are still made without any real analysis of the criteria used. The terms good and bad are repeatedly applied without qualification whilst the relationship between personal and professional ethics is far too contentious to do any more than give cursory consideration. Despite recent manifestos and themed publications on design for good graphic designers have yet to examine what such terms really mean: in a time of relativism it has been far too divisive to do so.

Good takes philosophy as its starting point but is not a philosophy book. It seeks to marry abstract ideas with practical application, removing some of the mystique that surrounds philosophy and highlighting its relevance for us all. Designers are people. This book seeks to engage designers in a debate about their profession and in an analysis of their value and worth. The decisions we make define us, in our ethical choices we reveal who we are.


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Using this book
Declaring an interest
Some useful definitions
The parameters of this book
Making good
Approaching good
Debating good
Being good
Doing good
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About the author (2006)

Lucienne Roberts is a graphic designer who allies a commitment to accessible, engaging graphic design with a socially aware agenda. Her studio, LucienneRoberts+, specialises in design for the voluntary, charity and arts sectors. She was a signatory of the First Things First 2000 manifesto, which called for greater design responsibility, and writes, lectures and publishes on her subject. She is external examiner of BA Typography and Graphic Communication at Reading University, spoke at TYPO London 2012 and has been invited to speak at the POINT conference in 2013.

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