The Greater Part

The greater part of creating design is not the final design, but everything that goes into it that’s not evident to the audience.

We can use the example of an iceberg. Only the smallest part of it – the tip – is visible above the water’s surface. Underneath the surface is everything unseen, which is huge in comparison, and necessary for that little bitty tip to exist above the water line.

The tip is the final design solution. The rest is the huge mass of research, discovery, thinking, observation, ideation, evaluation, iterations and revisions… to which the tip owes its very existence.

If you look at only the tip (the design solution) you’ll never value design as both a process and a result. You’ll see it as a product, not a service, and as a noun and not a verb.

Alvalyn Lundgren

Alvalyn Lundgren is the founder and principal of Alvalyn Creative, an independent consultancy providing brand strategy design and bespoke illustration for more than 30 years. She is the creator of Freelance Road Trip — a business school and podcast for creative freelancers. She teaches design and design practice on the college level with design schools and programs.