Why UI and UX Design Is Not An Art
If we look at developing what we called “digital technology” in the 21st century, there is rapid growth in this era.
We can see many devices with their particular functions or even combine some of the tasks as one device. We can take a look at a smartphone as an example.
At the very early development, it is all just about function and how it is worked. In recent years, there are a couple of brands that have the same base function.
What distinguishes them is how they can attract customers and give the best perception of their products.
This conception is where User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) can work together.
Both UI and UX cannot be separated from each other in digital product development.
The UI and UX are beyond the very beginning of the creation of a digital product. Each manufacturer has its UI and UX designs that differentiate it from others.
It seems like a competition on a trick, detail, comprehensiveness, and purpose, like an art on the users’ side. But this is where things started to get blurry between UI, UX, and art.
Users will think of how they are the same. Users look at how the products being neat and functional.
Each detail will interpret some designers – people who work on graphic design – in this area, like UI and UX designers.
A designer is not an artist and vice versa. To understand what makes UI and UX different from art, we need to know each of them.
UI stands for the user interface
Before getting further, we need to understand the definition first to expect what it should be like.
The meaning of the interface itself is the spot at which independent and often unrelated systems communicate with each other – in digital products is like the system and the user.
UI interprets the function as a visual of the interaction that the user can see.
Let’s take an example from a smartphone: a camera function. A camera feature on a screen was interpreted as a letter “camera,” is a colour visual (such as icon, picture, animation), or even better, a combination of them.
By using the correct visual, the user can understand that the function exists. UI does not stop right there.
The UI also interprets the more process that the user can interact with.
The UI shows which procedure will be doing what, such as the shutter, flash, timer, and more.
But it needs to be noted that users do not only access all the functions, which users will not use at all, or the function is prohibited from user access to prevent the product’s malfunction.
UI is importantly needed as the visuals of the product.
Indeed, It will lead to the need for UI as the aesthetically pleasing products.
How UI becomes aesthetically pleasing is complex, including the choice of shape, size, colour, details, and positions.
The designer needs to be creative and creates an understandable yet pleasing UI to maximise the product’s function.
Different brands have their designer, which makes the same function in the other development has different primarily UI.
Users will be attracted to choose the better and aesthetically yet functional UI as their option.
Apart from the visual design, the accessibility to the function will be the most important.
The user will judge the design at first glance and will much care about usability and likeability.
The users are more about getting their task or purpose done quickly and with the minimum effort possible.
The design is the designer’s essential, but it only shows the user how to work.
As far as it can function efficiently and correctly as the users’ needs, it is safe to say that the UI is acceptable.
As the user-facing the UI, judging the design and functionality, the user’s involvement in the UI implementation will create a result in the Users Experience (UX)
In general, the UX will affect the physical and digital products.
But we will be focused on digital products.
Since the UI functions on the visuals and the usability of the features and accessed by the user, using the outcome will be personal.
A user who is having an experience with ones’ UI will not get the same experience in another UI.
The same UI will not give the same experience to two or more different users.
The experience then becomes a preference. The user will choose the most effective and most accessible product among any other else.
In designing the product, the designer uses the UX to create meaningful and relevant experiences for users.
This involves designing the entire process of acquiring and integrating the development, including branding, design, usability, and function.
Indeed, each designer has to improve their soft skills like collaboration, empathy, problem-solving, and critical thinking.
A UX designer is concerned with the entire process of acquiring and integrating a product, including aspects of branding, design, usability, and function.
It is a story that begins before the device is even in the user’s hands.
The designer must think through all stages of a product or service – from initial intentions through final reflections, from the first usage to help, service, and maintenance.
They have to make them all work together seamlessly.
Products that provide a great user experience are thus designed with the product’s consumption or use in mind and the entire process of acquiring, owning, and even troubleshooting it.
Similarly, UX designers don’t just focus on creating usable products; we concentrate on other aspects of the user experience, such as pleasure, efficiency, and fun, which we can understand as the crucial parts of the UI.
Shortly, there is no single definition of a good user experience.
Instead, a good user experience meets a particular user’s needs in the specific context of the product.
The result of deciding and creating the UI and UX is the product itself.
The early developing products combine both the visuals and the function but tend to give more role than visuals.
As time goes, the development went further. The procedure might also be developed slightly.
While there is nothing much more to do with the function, the designer will create more visuals. The designer will make a better, easier, and more beautiful visual for the function.
The improvement on the visual will attract the user at first sight while still making sure the procedure was done perfectly.
All of these design tweaks will then become a canvas for creating the most pleasing visuals.
These visual enhancements then become the “art” of designing the UI and UX of the products.
At this point, the user starts to draw a blurry line between the art of UI and UX design and the actual art itself.
The artist makes the art.
The definition of art itself is the conscious use of skill and creative imagination, especially in the production of aesthetic objects.
Here we only focus on the visual arts.
Visual arts are made by interpreting the meaning and purposes using shape, size, colour, details, and positions, which are implemented aesthetically.
The creation of the visual arts will be based on inspiring, reflecting, or perplexing.
It will make the audience (the user of the arts) feel more connected to something else more than themselves.
Arts also will be just there for pleasing the human sense.
In creating the visual arts, the foundation and purpose of the art are limited to fulfil the reason and create its definition of beauty.
The visual arts are more about themselves, and the audience is just the audience who enjoy the arts without having something to do with it.
Visual arts also have the perspective of how the art will mean to be. However, the philosophy of the arts is only comprehended by the creator, the artist itself.
Only the artist that will integrate the reasons of why is it was made, why it should be like that, why not using this or that, it all comes back to the artist.
The arts only belong to its artist, not anybody else, even another artist in the same genre.
It is now clearly seen that there is a difference between UI and UX and the art itself.
The purpose of creating between the UI and UX and arts has walked a different path.
The designer creates the UI and UX to make both visual and function work but still prioritise the process rather than starting as pleasing as possible.
When the procedure has been done entirely without any mistakes or harming any other part of the function, the designer can go to the visual approach to pleasing the user and creating a good experience from the product’s pleasing visuals and superb usability.
This is the point where the purpose of UI and UX designers can meet and be fulfilled.
Meanwhile, the artist’s goal to create visual arts is just as imagery of an inspiration, applying as pleasing as possible with considering to be as aesthetic as possible while still holding its meaning.
Visual arts also have no defined point as a finishing point since only the artist knows they feel enough to create art.
This can make the audience of the art cannot have a perfect experience towards an art.
The audience can be amazed at an unfinished work of art or not pleased with the finished art. It depends back on the artist itself.
Both UI and UX designer and artist can use their creation as business objects, make money, and gains a reputation.
But there is a different approach between the two in accomplishing their creation.
There is a noticeable difference in the product that they create.
Since the UI and UX has a purpose of making some functions done, their work will primarily be marketed as a daily use product that will be used more than once and expected to be working well as long as possible.
UI and UX product will also be obsolete, broken, upgraded, or replaced when it seems unreliable, either the function or the visual.
Taking smartphones as an example, you can see this in how the application, which we can say beautiful a well-functional, keep upgrading or be replaced with a better one.
It different case for the arts, however. Once the crafts were created, both the artist and the audience can do with the creation.
It’s just there, being awful or magnificent forever as long as the product exists.
As we can see on a painting, sculpture, and more. Art product is just one and cannot be replaced.
Even if the same artist creates the same art, making the original and the other ones are different, thus will define as a new work of art.
That is why most of the old arts are valued higher than their original value on the creation.
At this point, we can understand what UI, UX, and art are and how they look the same, but there is a blurred line bordering on one another.
UI is the visuals of a function, while UX is the experience that resulted in a working UI and how the users will get the product’s value.
On the other side, artists created art to fulfil our sense of needs for something meaningful.
From this article, next time you see a helpful product that is pretty and pleasing, we can see which one is the creativity of the UI and UX designer and the natural arts. Cheers!
Author Bio: Ulfah Alifah Yuliarso writes this article. She is an SEO Manager and a Content Writer from RRGraph Design. Keep in touch with Ulfah via her LinkedIn.