I don't know if it ever possible to answer the question "what is graphic design?" because it will inevitably mean something different to every graphic designer. But with this buzz I will try and describe what graphic design is to me. First to understand what graphic design is I think it is important to know what "design" is. this is the introduction/definition of what design is from wikipedia:
Design, usually considered in the context of applied arts, engineering, architecture, and other creative endeavors, is used both as a noun and a verb. As a verb, "to design" refers to the process of originating and developing a plan for a product, structure, system, or component. As a noun, "a design" is used for either the final (solution) plan (e.g. proposal, drawing, model, description) or the result of implementing that plan (e.g. object produced, result of the process). More recently, processes (in general) have also been treated as products of design, giving new meaning to the term "process design".
The term graphic design can refer to a number of artistic and professional disciplines which focus on visual communication and presentation. Various methods are used to create and combine symbols, images and/or words to create a visual representation of ideas and messages. A graphic designer may utilize typography, visual arts and page layout techniques in varying degrees to produce the final result of the project. Graphic design often refers to both the process (designing) by which the communication is created and the products (designs) which are generated.
Common uses of graphic design include magazines, advertisements, product packaging and web design. For example, a product package might include a logo or other artwork, organized text and pure design elements such as shapes and color which unify the piece. Composition is one of the most important features of graphic design especially when utilizing pre-existing materials or using diverse elements.
I think this epitimises graphic design to me in terms of it being systematically done, organised and timeless. I like the idea of good design being a joy to use and interact with, good design should make peoples lives better.
This is the American Airlines corporate identity which has been in use and unchanged since the sixties. This reinforces my view that good graphic design should be timeless. It should be beautiful because it offers a solution a problem in an elegant way.
To me information design is very interesting. graphic design in this sense can be approached in a very intellectual way and the aesthetics of a piece are directly derived from its meaning and function. .
In the notes below are pieces of design that I have chosen with my head: intellectual, organised and functional. here I am going to look at MM Paris, I think it would be true to say that I am choosing these pieces of work with my heart. I think graphic design should be a balance between heart and head, creativity and organisation.