Erik Spiekermann has something to say about Dribbble(medium.com)

over 6 years ago from Nice Shoes, Art Director

  • Marc EdwardsMarc Edwards, over 6 years ago

    How can you reduce a project — any project — to just one image?

    Include larger attachments? Write accompanying comments? Write a blog post and link to it? Post a few shots, and use the tags, project and rebound features on Dribbble to group them?

    Dribble perpetuates the prejudice about design that I disagree with most: it’s all about pretty pictures.

    Firstly, Dribbble is a site for designers and illustrators. For those in the industry, sometimes the smaller details are interesting, even if the broader strokes of a project can’t be seen.

    Secondly, designers and illustrators are communicators. It is our job to communicate within the constraints we have to work with. Dribbble’s small image size is a constraint I welcome. I find the challenge fun, and constructive.

    How do we know something is “amazing work” when all we see is a 300×400 img?

    The problem with this statement is the premise.

    61 points
    • Dirk HCM van BoxtelDirk HCM van Boxtel, over 6 years ago

      Knocked it straight out the ballpark.

      Also, while "making stuff pretty" isn't all we do, it is part of what we do. This whole knee-jerk towards visuals just because UX is important is a bit over-the-top for me.

      Having said that, I think people on Dribbble could do with some more interesting opinions. "OMG AWESOME" is only fun every once in a while, and tastes better in between some "[...] could be improved" and "Have you tried [...]".

      11 points
      • Marc EdwardsMarc Edwards, over 6 years ago

        Also, while "making stuff pretty" isn't all we do, it is part of what we do.

        YES. If Dribbble is a good place to view pretty things or discuss techniques for making stuff pretty, then it still has a good purpose.

        7 points
    • Laurens SpangenbergLaurens Spangenberg, over 6 years ago

      I think that Eric's criticism is related to how Dribbble is extremely focused on the visual aspect of designs. Yes there are attachments, links, and so on, but in the end the Dribbble home page puts emphasis on the visual aspect, and people click on designs based on that aspect. Besides, as far as I understand, not everyone writes blog posts, links multiple images, or attachments. The emphasis is on the visual while the more "intellectual" part is made optional. (I know this isn't the best word to use)

      The medium is the message.

      1 point
      • Marc EdwardsMarc Edwards, over 6 years ago

        I think that Eric's criticism is related to how Dribbble is extremely focused on the visual aspect of designs.

        Then I agree, Dribbble isn’t the ideal place for a long form case study. Does everything have to be a long form case study?

        Yes there are attachments, links, and so on, but in the end the Dribbble home page puts emphasis on the visual aspect, and people click on designs based on that aspect.

        Is that a bad thing?

        4 points
        • Andreas Ubbe Dall, over 6 years ago

          It seems that for instance the behance platform affords itself better to more indepth posts. I can't wrap my head around why people commenting here seem so determined that dribbble change and become something else than it is. Why not just embrace the platform for what it is, and look elsewhere for other desires?

          2 points
        • Laurens SpangenbergLaurens Spangenberg, over 6 years ago (edited over 6 years ago )

          How I interpreted Eric's criticism is that at the end of the day, it doesn't really matter that Dribbble has all those features because their core focus is still visuals in their form of small thumbnails.

          My issue with Dribbble is akin to those with large subreddits. It's large enough where every person can be grouped into a mob and it has a competitive atmosphere. This is not to say that this is a game, but rather that people share things with a visual style that reflects what the crowd agrees with. Dribbble is a place where people share what they will get praised for. This leads to very homogeneous content with little critique. I think it's dissapointing that Dribbble doesn't have one of the most useful things that come from sharing work, critique. That's not to say we should be nihilists of course, but rather that we all find ways to help each other become better designers.

          I've nothing against a nice place to share just visuals, but I do think there's a better way to do it.

          0 points
          • Marc EdwardsMarc Edwards, over 6 years ago

            Maybe I use it differently. I don’t really care what the mob likes or doesn’t like. I don’t care about trying to score some kind of social media points.

            I use it to share small snippets of things I'm working on, to post fun little visual experiments, and for research. For me, Dribbble has been brilliant and I’ll gladly pay for a Pro account subscription.

            If other people don’t like it… ¯_(ツ)_/¯

            0 points
          • Andreas Ubbe Dall, over 6 years ago

            Try viewing recent shots instead of the most popular, I guarantee you not everything is the same visual style. The fact that 'the crowd' (Real people, you and me, everybody who uses dribbble) vote certain things to the top has nothing to do with the platform itself.

            If you think there should be more critique on dribbble, start writing insightful critiques, instead of whining about dribbble - would be much more productive, surely.

            1 point
            • Laurens SpangenbergLaurens Spangenberg, over 6 years ago

              I rarely use Dribbble and don't usually comment about it, unless asked about it, like here.

              Having used it rarely, this is just how I perceive it as is. But, I'll check out the recent shots more if it reflects more different types of content.

              0 points
              • Andreas Ubbe Dall, over 6 years ago

                So the original link is by a guy who visited dribbble for the first time the same day as he wrote the medium post (and clearly lacks a full understanding of the platform) - and in the comments we have people who rarely use dribbble commenting.

                Might explain why the discourse is reduced to the typical dribbble-hate circlejerk.

                0 points
    • William Fendler, over 6 years ago

      +1

      Comment this on the article itself. Would be interested to see some back and forth with Erik on these rebuttals.

      0 points
    • Account deleted over 6 years ago

      Thank you, Marc :)

      0 points