Remembering how graphic design has changed

Actually, the reason I am writing about this, was because I am in the middle of the book by David Sedaris, Me Talk Pretty One Day. If you haven’t read it, or any other book by David, run out and either get it from the library or your local independent book store. I’ll still be here when you get back.

I love David’s writing, because he uses the type of humor that I enjoy, the one where he sets something up, and then plays it out to show how funny it really is, either through exaggeration or just by showing how ridiculous life really is.

Anyway, I was reading though one of the chapters, and he talked about how he used to hang out with the graphic design people because they always had glue, and then one day they didn’t. I laughed at that one. I got into graphic design when you could still smell spray mount in the air (usually outside if we weren’t in a hurry, sometimes inside if we hoped no one was watching. We actually had a small stat room where we took stats, photos to make what we had created into one thing. In fact, when I first joined the agency I worked for, first as a freelancer, then as a full time production person for all of 10 years, the art director was printing out text and then pasting the logo and border down, rather than creating the whole thing on the computer. In fact, I was brought in to do just that, put the logos of the companies we worked for, into the computer so we could just print out the page, and send it off to the paper (this was before the internet was wide-spread enough to just email the sucker in.

When I first started there, the owner of the company would show off the art department, and all the modern Mac computers we had, because, back then, it was impressive. We had one of those huge 600dpi laser printers that were the size of a large horse when they first came out. Five years later, the value and the size had gone down so much that I was able to trade the printer for a lap top.

By the end of the 10 years, just before the company was sold, and we all moved off on our own, the owner brought a prospect by to see the art department. He had not changed his speech in all those years. "And here, we use Macs," he said proudly, showing us off as though we were zoo animals.

The prospect, perhaps hoping he had more to say turned to him and said "we use them too," thus bursting his bubble.


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