Design Under Constraint

The latest print issue of WIRED contains a quite amazing article by Scott Dadich (Creative Director at Wired) about Design under Constraint. (Some abstract?)


“… In fact, the worst thing a designer can hear is an offhand “Just do whatever you want.” That’s because designers understand the power of limits. Constraint offers an unparalleled opportunity for growth and innovation.

Think of a young tree, a sapling. With water and sunshine, it can grow tall and strong. But include some careful pruning early in its development—removing low-hanging branches—and the tree will grow taller, stronger, faster. It won’t waste precious resources on growth that doesn’t serve its ultimate purpose. The same principle applies to design. Given fewer resources, you have to make better decisions…

From Wall Street to Detroit to Washington, the lack of limits has proven to be a false freedom. (…) But design teaches us that this is our hour of opportunity. In the following pages, we explore a few of our favorite constraints. In each case, the imposition of limits doesn’t stifle creativity—it enables it.

Constraints are your friends 🙂

Published by

Erhard Wimmer

Master of Desaster