Words of encouragement to get back to our origins

It was encouraging to read Michael Johnson’s reappraisal of the power of text in graphic design (DW 17 October). Surely the need for this is due to the fact that the image has, in recent years, surged ahead, often in terms of technology at the expense of meaningful content.

The result of this is the stylish, ‘lifestyle’ imagery that passes for graphic design, contrasting to the effective communication of text and image working together.

The fact that an image can communicate a ‘thousand words’ is a perpetual problem for the visual communicator who may only want to say a few words. This is where text steps in to sharpen, focus and target the message.

The success of marrying image and text depends on a mutual understanding of their strengths and weaknesses as each seeks to bring out the best in the other.

Paul Linnell

Course leader, BA graphic design

De Montfort University

Leicester LE1 9BH

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