We can trace the development of this kind of design, the way it is today, through the use and production of images. Henri Toulouse Lautrec, the 19th century illustrator, printer and painter, can be considered to be an early graphic designer, because his work was commercial and was aimed to be reproduced innumerable times. This can be considered the beginning of this type of design. Toulouse Lautrec was the head of his business, he was getting the client’s brief, understanding the context and the research, doing the drawing, the most part of the printing and we can assume he was delivering the work to the clients. From these activities began the concept of a commercial artist.
Graphic designer, Quentin Newark, has traced the practice of illustrating an idea with images and words to the 20th century, when well-known graphic designers, such as Milton Glaser, displayed that visual communication was very much about both, imagery and words, to the 21st century when we can see that illustration is leading into more visual communication.
Illustration is only one aspect of picture making or image making and a few graphic designers are such that they cannot be distinguished from illustrators. Graphic designers like Milton Glaser and Seymour Chwast are mainly illustrators, who have also practiced the subject. An excellent recent example is Paul Davis, who not only makes drawings, but also uses language and words, thought bubbles and speech bubbles, being an extremely capable designer in his own way. He has designed many books, and seeing the way that he manipulates and positions his drawings, he seems to be more that simply an image maker.
Illustrations are now quite well-liked elements in design-based consumer branding, during the recent years. Because illustrations are quite human and personal kinds of visual communication, they are being used because corporations that want to play down the impression of their being impersonal and being considered a part of mercenary globalisation. According to writer and designer, Adrian Shaughnessy, this is also happening because designer illustrators are incorporating typography into their work. This has created an original seductive message that brings together the directness of typography and the sensory appeal of pattern, illustration and form making.
A graphic design company or a graphic designer’s job is to choose, develop and structure imagery, colour palettes, typography, paper stock, layouts, printing graphics and the complete graphic styles in a manner that help the client to achieve their desired effects. According to the project’s nature, the designer and the client, the process may permit uninhibited artistic expressions, or it may be firmly connected to commercial imperatives. In numerous cases, it is the stress between the two approaches that results in producing the best and most effective projects.