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The history of graphic design is linked to cultural changes and technological advances that humanity has suffered over the years. Starting with cave paintings, going through hieroglyphs and reaching modern branding, we can understand more about the origin and evolution of design.

Starting point for graphic design

In the Middle Ages, ornamentation and decorations began to be used in religious texts, and by the year 1440, at the hands of Johan Gutenberg, the printing press was born: a mechanical method with the ability to reproduce texts and images on paper on a massive scale.

With the emergence of the printing press, new materials, inks and fonts also appeared. In addition, a new profession was created: the typographer or typesetter, a person specialized in layout and text adjustment. In the 1960s, the printing press gave way to ‘coranto’, the forerunner of the newspaper in which the first print advertisements were published.

It was thus that at the end of the 19th century and motivated by the need to generate income, artists began to work as designers and this profession began to have relevance throughout the world.

The industrial revolution and its impact on graphic design

The evolution of graphic design accelerates in the middle of the 15th century with the Industrial Revolution. However, it manages to consolidate in the 20th century, leveraged by various historical events around the world:

During the 1920s, a time that brought great changes to humanity, Art Deco appeared: an artistic movement focused on decorative arts and industrial design.
In the 40s, Soviet political propaganda was the protagonist and gave way to the modernism of the post-war period of the 50s.
The contrast of the modernist style with the psychedelic design set a trend in the 60s.
Consequently, in the 70s the pop-retro style was born.
The evolution of graphic design accelerated in the 1980s due to the emergence of the internet.

The consolidation of graphic design

In the 90s, with the arrival of the digital age, minimalist design took hold. In addition, it became an indispensable element of modern advertising in the 2000s, when the branding boom hit the industry.

Digital marketing continued to develop and companies began to demand, more and more, the creation of a unique identity to ensure that their presence on the internet was relevant. In this way, elements such as logos, brand manuals and websites became indispensable.

Where do we find graphic design today?

This activity continues to be a crucial feature of advertising. However, designers also apply their knowledge and skills in areas such as:

Creation of new brands.
Digital marketing.
Product photography.
Research and media management.
Movie theater
Multimedia design.
Editorial design.

What comes for this practice? Undoubtedly its development does not end, so let’s enjoy the gifs, emojis and stickers while it surprises us with something new.

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