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Graphic designers use a variety of design elements to achieve artistic or decorative effects in print or electronic mediums to help determine the message the design should convey.

Doesn't a graphic designer already know what message they have to convey?

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  • Not really... when design begins it is often not known what the exact goal (message in this case) is. That is kind of what design to some extent is: making concrete goals out of diffuse aims. But even when a goal is crystal clear it still needs to be verified somehow. If the clients would know what they truly wanted to message they probably dont need a designer (graphic or otherwise)
    – joojaa
    Commented Mar 27 at 5:03
  • So these design elements help determine the message by playing a role in how a message is conceived by the audience? So determining here means deciding or shaping what idea or emotion the design should provoke.? Did I get it right?
    – kokopelli
    Commented Mar 27 at 5:39
  • I think the quote you're showing is just poorly worded. I don't know its source and this is only my opinion: but "determines" is not the right word. The designer uses graphics to tell or communicate a message, not to decide/work out what that message should be. That's usually something the client will tell the designer before any work starts. Some clients of course do not actually know what they want, and a designer may have to help them discover it. But the "message" generally has to be decided before the work begins. The quote seems to put the cart before the horse
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Mar 29 at 12:35

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Doesn't a graphic designer already know what message they have to convey?

Yes.

All designs start with a goal. That goal can be sales related, educational, informational, etc.. Designs should be geared to promoting that message to a target audience.

Designers do not often determine what the message is itself. The client (or employer) does that. The designer's job is to make that message aesthetically pleasing to gain attention given the information provided (copy).

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  • My question is how do design elements determine a message the design should convey.
    – kokopelli
    Commented Mar 27 at 5:48
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    Use of the words "help determine" are misplaced. Designers help convey a message but they rarely determine the message itself. That is not to say designers can't create a piece on their own and determine a message they personally wish to convey, but that is not the bulk of the work professional designers perform. Most professional designers work for someone that already has a message they want to convey.
    – Scott
    Commented Mar 27 at 6:07
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    Convey yes.. determine no. The designer doesn't "pick the message." The designers's job is to make the message someone else picked clear and pretty/engaging/etc..
    – Scott
    Commented Mar 27 at 6:19
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    Researchers, marking specialist, writers, business owners, etc., all determine what the message actually is. Then the designer is contacted and given copy and asked to create a piece that effectively conveys the provided copy for a sales piece, an informational brochure, an educational pamphlet.
    – Scott
    Commented Mar 27 at 6:25
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    @ZachSaucier - I suppose, if a designer is independently creating templates or other materials to be sold as "stock" items - but that's more of a niche and not broadly what the "profession" of design entails.
    – Scott
    Commented Mar 27 at 21:57

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