Making careful choices when it comes to the shape, size, and color of your designs can have far-reaching implications. In the case of printed designs, the choice of paper, ink and materials can significantly reduce the carbon footprint of a design piece. This means fewer emissions and a more efficient use of natural resources. Throughout the history of Western art and design, new or “different” thinking and tools are correlated with new aesthetic results.
Designers can help others make green choices Designers are able to influence their customers or employers to choose sustainable printing and packaging options.
Sustainable designmay be different from designs they have seen and used in the past, and if so, they are likely to wonder why you chose the design you chose and how it promotes sustainability. Anthony Dunne and Fiona Raby are supporters of “critical design”, a design that “offers a critique of the prevailing situation through designs that embody alternative social, cultural, technical or economic values. Concepts such as designing products and packaging to be reused and converted into new products later on and building them with universal parts to make repairs easy and accessible later date back more than a hundred years.
This means using less energy in general, and that extends to working with suppliers that use sustainable energy sources and manufacturing. This is another opportunity to find the “context” in which beauty becomes evident in a design without resorting to an external and superficial style. The technology used in digital design must be replaced by other forms that consume less energy. Many designers and companies face higher material costs when trying to implement sustainable design strategies.
A commitment to sustainable design can also mean having to think critically about what makes the most sense for your company. Meanwhile, from Green Acres, I heard Sara de Bondt talk about the Radical Nature catalog designed for the Barbican in London. Sustainable design is an approach to design that consists of a variety of sustainable design principles, all of which focus on extending the lifespan of products and preventing the depletion of natural resources. When an object is remanufactured, it is rebuilt to its original specifications and lives a second life doing the same things it was originally designed and built for.