I really love this quote about design from Frank Chimero’s interview on The Great Discontent:
Design is a vessel. There’s the whole Buddhist thing about the essence of a bowl being its emptiness—that’s why it’s useful. Its emptiness allows it to hold something. I guess that means that design must talk about something else. If you make design about design, you’re just stacking bowls, and that’s not what bowls are for.
Another way of putting this is that good design frames the content and conveys the message in the simplest way possible. Just like a bowl.