What exactly is art direction? Why is it so important? How will it benifit my working practice?
The art director (AD) is a person who supervises the creative process of a design. The term â€˜art directorâ€™ is a blanket title for a variety of similar job functions in advertising, marketing, publishing, film and television, the Internet, and video games.
An Art directors general role and job description Various artists may create or develop specific parts of an art piece or scene; but it is the charge of a sole art director to unify the vision. In particular, the art director is in charge of the overall visual appearance and how it communicates visually, stimulates moods, contrasts features, and psychologically appeals to a target audience. The art director makes decisions about visual elements used, what artistic style to use, and when to use motion. One of the most difficult problems that art directors face is to translate desired moods, messages, concepts, and underdeveloped ideas into imagery. During the brainstorming process, art directors, designers, and clients are engaged in imagining what the finished piece or scene might look like. At times, an art director is ultimately responsible for solidifying the vision of the collective imagination while resolving conflicting agendas and inconsistencies between the various individual inputs.
What is art direction? That’s a hard question to answer. In the movies, art directors are usually responsible for creating the “look and feel” of the film. In advertising and print work, art directors (often teamed up with a copywriter) come up with “concepts,” the creative ideas which communicate with us on a gut level through such devices as theme, metaphor, and symbolism. Some art directors do little more than dream up these ideas and present them to clients, while some oversee almost all aspects of the design and production process. Surprisingly, art direction is seldom taught in schools and there is very little formal information on the subject; it is often learned in practice.
A good start is to look at the great image makers. The great painters, particularly the really, really old ones, because in those days paintings were used to tell stories and are laden with visual symbolism.
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