design styles & mind types


New Member
Hi I have been thinking about learning graphic design since being offered to me taught by a friend who is a graphic designer. They have there own business and do well for themselves.
I am planning on buying a mac book for myself to take up graphic design but I am curios about a few things.[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]I am creative I enjoy drawing and do it quiet a lot and would consider myself quiet a right brained person. Im often inspired by what I see around myself or what im feeling. But my worry is that you need to be quiet [FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]mathematical[/FONT][FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif] minded, and logical to create a good graphic design? [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]Even though for now it is just a skill im learning, the person who would be teaching me sais they'd like to see my creative twist on what they teach.[/FONT]
[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]When i draw, sketch, write poetry or create something it comes from the non thinking part of my brain if that makes any sense.[/FONT]

[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]So are there different styles of learning? The friend who would teach me is aswell as creative minded but meticulous and perfectionist and that gives him great success, he is also straight lines kind of guy, thinks inside the box, neat and tidy and im the opposite and colour and create outside the box.[/FONT]
[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif] [/FONT]
[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]Can my creativity, right rained, sketchy or not linear style be applied or used in graphic design? and do you have to be quiet mathematical and logical to be a good designer and are there different learning styles in how you can learn graphic design???[/FONT]
[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]My concern is not with tutor its more a doubt in wondering can a holistic, non linear, right brained thinker be able to incorporate themselves into something like graphic design??[/FONT]

[FONT=Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]Sorry for he weird question but opinions would appreciated :)[/FONT]
A difficult question, and I struggled to follow it in all honesty =P but I'll try to offer some thoughts.

I'd start off by saying design isn't art; likewise art isn't design, and (in my personal opinion) the two aren't interchangeable; so be careful when applying your personal thoughts/feelings to a design project.

Design usually involves having a brief from a client and you'll need more than just drawing skills to handle it properly. You'll need to start by ensuring the brief you get is accurate and detailed, this can be presented to you from the get-go, but it's more likely you'll need to speak with your client (face-to-face if possible) in order to get everything you need to undertake a design project. You need to know who the client is, what they want, what they want the project to achieve, who the intended target audience is, what they're like, what they respond to; as well as all the nitty-gritty such as budgets & timescales etc for the project. All of this means you need some logical thinking and good organisational skills to succeed in design. We hate admitting it, but 50% (perhaps more) of the work isn't designing.

Lateral thinking and creativity are obviously very important; it means you can take the information you glean from the brief (and your meeting with the client) and formulate ideas that others can't. This is where design skills truly come into play; you take the brief, process all of the information and start creating some ideas that answer it both effectively and creatively.

What I think you're getting fixated on is the technical skills a designer might have (illustration or using creative software effectively) and although good execution is important, this is only half of what makes good design. It's simply not good enough to just make something pretty and call it designed. If it doesn't answer the brief then it's failed (and as I said before, if you don't ascertain a strong brief to answer in the first place then it'll fail) - It might be that you're inspired by some really off-the-wall things and have your 'eureka' moments in pretty strange places, but you'll need to be able to apply that creative thinking where it's needed. There's a contingent who refer to this as "designing for the sake of design" - where you apply a creative idea because you've had one, not because it works.

I also think a good designer also won't have a "style" - Styles are for artists & illustrator who are defined and recognised by them. A designer should be able to adapt to different briefs aimed at targeting different people in different ways and, if necessary, enlist the help of those with the skills they themselves don't have (this could be an illustrator/photographer etc)

So, to put it bluntly, I think you need more than just the right-side of your brain to succeed in design. It will play a massive part in creating good work, but without the ability to ground yourself, organise a project and understand people/markets/briefs you're supposed to be addressing you could struggle. However, that said, I think learning holistically is the best way to improve this. Keep developing your creative thought processes, go outside the box and approach things from different angles at the same time as remembering to ask the right questions, collect & collate important information & learn new skillsets (writing code, design software techniques etc) - Don't lose the creative way of approaching things, but don't let it make every decision.