Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Print Is(n't Even Close To Being) Dead.

The other night, in a discussion amongst several colleagues, the notion of "is print dead?" came up. I simply can't help it, my eyes immediately begin rolling the instant this topic of discussion's brought up. Call me a dinosaur, call me what you will, but don't forget to also call me a realist while you're at it.

The "print is dead" theory has largely been spear-headed by metro-bubble, tech-driven, design snobs who huddle around coffee shops and convince themselves that everyone thinks like they do. The argument doesn't hold much water past the newspaper – which isn't even dead yet, by the way.

For starters, every single item made and sold in this world comes with packaging and visual identity. Everything. In other words, order it online from your fancy website and guess what arrives? An actual product, fully-realized in all three dimensions with a design intact that was designed by an actual designer. Weird.

Only a soulless generation would think of creating a visual world filled solely with monitors and digital screens. You can't hold a pixel. A pixel doesn't give you comfort and, let's face it, real life demands a whole lot more than 72 dots per inch. For example, try sending an ecard to Mom on Mother's Day or your wife or husband on your anniversary. They'll hate you, and rightfully so.

Ultimately, it's very likely that a few individual facets of print design will fade away in time but this is not nearly enough to make print D.O.A. as we head into the 2010's – or within my lifetime. And I'm not that old, thank you very much.