Tool #6: Proliferating ambitions and styles

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To be a “successful” designer today, the right look in both image and style is key – both in what one designs and how one presents oneself. Trying to fit in with the style of the moment produces a tendency to flatten the way designed stuff looks (whether critical or commercial) and creates for many a compulsive need for conspicuous consumption in the hope to align one’s design look with one’s ambitions. However, styles and their respective objects have a kind of planned obsolescence of desirability, which gets not only designers caught up in a financially, environmentally and socially costly spiral of consumption for the sake of not becoming obsolescent/undesirable themselves.

But as designers, we also are potentially in a good position to break with this homogenising loop of ambitions and its respective style of the moment. We can activate our skills to contribute to the proliferation of ambitions and design styles that are valued without necessarily relying on detrimental consumerist behaviours.

Last edit: 21.11.2014