Design Hong Kong Guide

Design and Hong Kong's Creative Industry
March 29, 2023

Design is about progress. 

It is the conceptualization and creation of new things: ideas, interactions, information, objects, typefaces, books, posters, products, places, signs, systems services, furniture, websites, and more. 

Designers imagine and make. 

They also research and think. Skilled in one or more specialties of the discipline, designers use their abilities in collaboration with others. 

Designers want to make ideas real and to make a difference. 

A career in design is more than a job. It is a way of seeing; a way of interacting with the world. It is a way of life.

Where to look for inspiration?

Hong Kong boasts an incredible art world with some of the most famous auction houses in the world such as Christie's and Sotheby's. 

Both auction houses sell extremely rare items from some of the most prestigious collections in the world.

Art galleries are all around the island, displaying all kinds of pieces, from the modern world to older pieces.

The art world is just one of the booming sectors. 

As Hong Kong designers reach far outside of the art world, you'll find some of them in the tech sector and in entrepreneurs where creativity, development, and design in general is just as important.

With this in mind, in such a blooming city, design is at every corner, in small shops, in the mountain, or even by the sea.

The importance of Graphical Identity

When designing something for a brand, you often have to use its graphical identity, a sort of guideline that reminds the world of who the brand is and what they're about. 

Think of the iconic yellow M from McDonald's.

A graphical identity, or visual identity, is the brand’s message. 

It’s communicated by a company's logo, design schemes, characters, and other visual symbols used in external and internal messages. 

When creating an impactful and consistent graphic identity, you’ll maintain and build a strong brand image.

Visual identity is, a way to make someone think: “I know what that is, I’ve already seen the logo/design”. 

Having a strong, recognizable graphical identity can also distinguish your brand from the group, making it standout.

The best example is probably from Apple, every ad that comes out, every video, website design, and box design aims at showing their brand identity, simplicity, creativity, and efficiency.

Design and the User Experience

When designing anything, you have to think about the intended use of what you're designing. 

This means putting yourself in the place of the user and making his experience, the user experience as memorable and unique as possible.

User experience creates the entire product experience, it’s the reason why users are going to favor your creation even if a competitor gives the same results or created something similar. 

It creates an overall experience that brings your product forward.

Beyond making your product better than the rest, it can actually make you charge more for the same results. Many brands rely on user experience alone to justify much higher prices. 

If that sounds unreasonable to you, think again and look at the brands you use, you'll soon realize that you don't pay for the features but rather, the experience.

The Hong Kong designers association

The Hong Kong Designer Association was established in 1972. 

It is the first design association based in Hong Kong and represents the public interest in design and a higher profession for practicing designers. 

HKDA now boasts over 1 000 registered members covering six major Design categories, including Graphics, Space, Product, Education, Digital media, and Fashion.

The association has become quite famous in Hong Kong's design space as it hosts a variety of events, from awards to classes and various events. 

It is a great opportunity for designers in the city to meet up with like minded people and find new opportunities.

Types of designs

Design can be extremely broad, in itself, it can reference almost any domain. 

Design is the creative restraint of all domains in the sense that it is a creative activity limited by the constraints from other sectors.

When building a product, you're often limited by costs, by quality requirements, by production, practicality, features, etc. 

This leads to specific sub genres of design such as industrial design and interiors.

These requirements lead people to co create and explore to showcase their creativity.

Technology for design

Technology has always been a tool. 

In design especially, it enables artists to imagine new features and improve their processes.

One technology stands out in particular, 3D. 

Be it to build virtual worlds, create NFTs or to create renders of what a design will look like, 3D has pushed the design space to new highs.

In renders particularly, designers can leverage software and tools to visualize what their ideas will look like in real life. 

This creates two things.

Firstly, artists can freely share their ideas with others in a way that shows their ideas accurately, just as they've imagined. 

This means they can convince people and test their ideas with much more ease.

Secondly, creators can iterate on their design with the push of a button. 

This leaves more space for creativity as designers can change colors, materials, and shapes with ease. 

Be it in product design or creating a proof of concept, all these features are fundamental in today's design space.

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