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A list of contemporary graphic design research paper topics


Graphic design tells a story with or without words in much the same way as contemporary art but with a topic that may have a more pointed commercial value. This may be a logo, a poster, an entire theme for an office or a banner. When you decide to research in this subject area, your choices are also quite extensive. Here are a few to consider.

How color TV changed graphic design

Prior to the invention of color television, the graphic art featured in popular shows had to focus on elements that did not require color. Look at examples of how these early designers worked around their limitations to produce a workable product. You can also look into the type of graphic design that is targeted to visually impaired people to get an idea of other ways that graphic artists have and still do improvise.

How the Gutenberg press changed typography

Prior to the invention of the Gutenberg press, books were expensive and with good reason. Each one was written by hand by monks. Once the press was created, books could be made far more quickly and errors were reduced. This also led to a standardization in lettering. Look into how this has influenced modern writing.

The birth of realism in traditional art

While graphic design is not only art, it overlaps with the field significantly enough for a topic on traditional art to have relevance. The stylized type of art that was popular in many ancient cultures has been borrowed from in graphic design quite successfully. This paper can discuss how the shift was made into a sort of realistic standard.

How computers made graphic design accessible

The prices of technology have decreased at rapid rates so that even the graphics that were the top of the line a few decades ago are now achievable on the average home computer. You can discuss how much the industry has benefited from this increased access.

The most influential designs of the past century

This research paper can look at classic designs and the features that make them so timeless. For comparison, it can explain why other designs were quickly abandoned.

As a graphic designer you may be more interested in designing than writing about design. At times we may need to do things that we don’t enjoy in the pursuit of academic glory. Select a topic you can relate to and the process will be that much more interesting for you.

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