Don’t value efficiency over creativity

Image by: Jane Willsie

Your company is after a new look. But instead of consulting a design firm, you decide to try out a new computer program. Within minutes, your company is presented with a complete redesign pitch, neatly crafted to the meet current trends.

So far, automation and smarter technologies have provided us the convenience to pursue our endeavors more effectively. But as computers become more intelligent, how will our human creative and artistic pursuits compare?

I’d say pretty well.

In the fourth chapter of Lucien Ng’s advertising thesis “The Antithesis of My Design Education”, Ng conceptualized “Artificium”: a hypothetical program that fills the creative demands of a graphic designer. Theoretically, a client could use “Artificium” for any creative component that their company requires.

With enough understanding of design theory, layout standards and trend awareness, this program could indeed become a reality in the near future.

But while “Artificium” is capable of reproducing marketing identities, it’s too rationally limited to bring new ideas to the table.

Consider the program an advanced template generator. Even with a program robust enough to consume new media and adjust for new designs, “Artificium” would lack the critical perspective and societal experience to create authentic work.

Artistic endeavors are often initiated by societal change, but are always a result of the artist’s individual perspective.

A computer program can process vast amounts of information far more efficiently than a person; however, it would have to develop traits beyond purely analytic processing to provide creative insight.

Rather than simply being aware of current trends, established graphic designers work to bring their personal style and perspective to the existing market. Creative programs, while useful, ultimately have limited effectiveness in a culture stimulated by new ideas.

As the job market evolves, creative occupations will remain mostly un-automated.

While more advanced technologies will further aid the creative process, designers must remain to rethink established rules and introduce new ideas.

So as automation quickly becomes more prevalent, keep in mind that the human experience — not economic efficiency — will remain the driving force behind our artistic and creative endeavours.

Check out Lucien Ng’s work at

Arwin is The Journal’s Production Manager. He is a fourth-year Cognitive Science major. 


artificial intelligence, Computing, creativity, Design

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