Good design isn’t a matter of pairing the right typeface with a gorgeous color palette. Good design is the balance of form and function. It is about giving the user what they expect, and then taking them beyond those expectations. Good design is about clarity.
As a graphic designer, my focus was never on just making things beautiful, it was on making things functional by solving a problem. It is a process that involves research, iteration and testing; and if I’ve done the process correctly, there will be an inherent beauty in the solution because it is functional, addresses the user need and communicates clearly. Of course type choices, color palettes, spacing and all the foundational principals of design are necessary too. It’s simply that those principals only applied the the end of the design process, not at the outset.
As a UX designer, my process is now more robust. More structured. But the goal is still the same: to achieve great designs through research, iteration and testing.