Trianimals

Ned Drew
Professor
Department of Arts, Culture and Media
Rutgers University

Brenda McManus
Assistant Professor Graphic Design
Dyson College of Arts & Sciences
Pace University

This letterpress project encompasses the traditional printing method with a contemporary and modular printing system. Inspired by the minimalist children’s book design of artists such as Blexbolex, Bruno Munari and Paul Rand, we set out to develop a narrative, and its accompanying visual vocabulary, based on a simple shape—the triangle. Using this shape we developed a unique story, generated through a system of expanding interpretations and multiple combinations.

The overall concept and design of this project revolves around our dedication to the foundations of design. Basic design principles, such as color, shape, abstraction and layering are at the core of this initiative. We developed a printing system based on a single unit, a one-inch right triangle. Like building blocks, we set out to create a series of simplified illustrations that were comprised of this single unit (the triangle).

Although conceived as a letterpress project, our process started with a more contemporary tool, the computer. We used Adobe Illustrator to design the animal illustrations, this process would later serve as a digital blueprint to work from when translating the various layers to the press bed. Once we worked through the design we produced one hundred, type high, 1” x 1” right triangles. To implement this system we produced 3D printed 1×1” triangular counter forms or “slugs”. These slugs enabled us to easily “lock up” different configurations on the press bed. We also custom cut a set of plywood “furniture” in various sizes that acted to fill and organize the unused areas of the press bed. This marriage of old and new technologies allowed for exciting possibilities, a departure from the conventional pica based printing process.

The use of digital tools in the design phase was instrumental in the success of our illustrations and in implementing and managing the printing process.

We often discuss with our students the concept of “1+1=3”. This simple concept helps to illustrate that, in design, basic elements can be combined to make unique combinations. In our printing process this is was also true. A major design consideration was the correct and balanced layering of colors to achieve the different components of the animals’ portraits. These whimsical and simplified representations came to life through the subtle layering and manipulation of various color combinations.

How Hard Is It To Navigate A Rectangle? Harder Than You Think

Neil Ward
Assistant Professor of Graphic Design
Drake University

Wayfinding and signage are important pieces of a buildings structure and interior space, especially on college/university campuses. They provide a visual blueprint that informs students, administrators, faculty, and public visitors where they are and attempts to direct them to classrooms, galleries, labs, performance spaces, and offices. When the signage is missing, incomplete, or inconsistent, all who enter the space are left confused and quite possibly frustrated as they wander around. A missing/poor wayfinding system can intensify these feelings when an individual is mobility challenged and unable to use the stairs. Especially when the building in question is rectangular in shape.

This is a particular problem senior level graphic design students encountered during a Research and Application class in the Fall semester of 2016. Using photo ethnography, observational research, and visual anthropology, students learned and observed how and why visitors entered, moved through, and exited the Fine Arts Building (A building that is rectangular in shape). Based on their findings, students designed a wayfinding system for the building that heavily considered those who are mobility challenged.

An individual (we will call her Jane) from the Office of Student Disabilities, who is mobility challenged, volunteered to test the wayfinding systems. During the user test, dialogue ensued between both parties about what was missing, what could be done better, and what to think about for future iterations. Upon debriefing, students passionately discussed their systems and the building as a whole through Jane’s point of view. Experiencing movement through the building with Jane they unanimously decided the current systems are unacceptable for a campus deemed accessible. Furthermore, they were inspired by Jane’s encouragement and the notion of how their wayfinding could continually and positively impact a large audience.

“How hard is it to navigate a rectangle? Harder than you think” will feature project visuals, the unexpected drive to design for social good, and the issue of accessibility to inspire empathy through wayfinding.

 

Eat Your Vegetables: Sneaking in Conceptual: Thinking during Technical Instruction

Suzanne Dell’Orto
Adjunct Lecturer
Fine & Performing Arts
Baruch College, CUNY

“Eat Your Vegetables: Sneaking in Conceptual Thinking during Technical Instruction” is an experiential progression of graphic design projects that helps to introduce and refine the technical skills essential to professional practice. More important, it overlays other 21st century skills, adding pedagogical depth to the skill-building through an implicit layer of meaning-making, critical thinking, and abstract and symbolic thinking.

My introductory graphic design class is mandated to build the skills to communicate ideas and cover the essence of branding (a highly competitive game of attention-getting, recognition and trust), and the class is enriched by the addition of a critical thinking element. Students imagine, conceptualize, then filter and form allegiances to a random “theme word” assigned at the beginning of the semester. The challenge of deepening the development of this key word threads through 15 weeks of instruction, intersecting critical thinking with learning technical skills. This approach also allows the mimicking of a real-life designer/client relationship, using the theme word as a surrogate client. Students also learn and use tools for thinking in the curricular sequence, some borrowed from other domains such as the writing process of “word mapping”.

Attendees will learn, in this illustrated lecture, that the complexities of contemporary professional practice and the competitive global business context demand a critical and creative approach to foundational coursework––well-prepared hands, eyes, and minds.

A Start Up Simulator: Collaborative Design Studio

Efecem Kutuk
Program Coordinator Industrial Design, University Lecturer
Robert Busch School of Design
Michael Graves College
Kean University

In recent years collaboration has become a fundamental of the design industry. In the start-up business environment, the corporate structure has been replaced by a passionate, skilled and capable 24/7 work force of risk-taking design entrepreneurs.

Everyday we witness independent design collaborations that capture recognition by launching their products through powerful tools such as social media and crowd funding, the innovate nature of which are several steps ahead of their market majority corporate competitors. What if we can simulate these collaborations at an earlier stage, during undergraduate education? What if we can mimic the experience of a start-up in the classroom?

I have been teaching “Collaborative Design Studio” the past three years, utilizing team-building and problem solving techniques to produce imaginary start-ups, which incorporate the full spectrum of the start-up model- user experience, branding and packaging by Graphic Designers, design development, prototyping by Industrial Designers, and exhibition of the product by Interior Designers. At certain points in the process, the team divides and conquers by their specialization within the design field. At other points, they work as a team to make common decisions. They follow a road that intermittently splits and merges throughout the journey. The course offered a window on how start-ups run, and gave students the ability to practice before graduating, rather than figuring out design entrepreneurism on the job.

My presentation will include examples of student work, from initial ideations to a finalized solution, by focusing on team members’ key decisions throughout the project. I will also substantiate my argument by highlighting the success of collaborative creative teams by other researchers findings. Finally, the importance of having a collaborative course in the design curricula, especially for institutions that have various design programs, will be open to discussion.

Designing Immersive Experiences with Empathy

Ed Johnston
Assistant Professor
Michael Graves College
Robert Busch School of Design
Kean University

One essential component in the vast majority of design thinking methodologies is the importance of empathy. As designers, we have the opportunity to understand and share the feelings of another, articulate pain points within a situation and develop solutions to those pain points.

With the emergence of mobile virtual reality and augmented reality, designers can begin to develop novel solutions to some daunting and exciting questions. What if we could help someone travel through time to the past and see things as they once were? What if we could transport someone into a space, which they cannot reach? What if we could help distract someone from feeling chronic pain or loneliness?

I have been working with students and creative researchers on projects to respond to some of these questions. In my Liberty Hall 360 research initiative, I have been using immersive technologies, including 360-degree video and augmented reality, to address a variety of needs within Liberty Hall Museum. These needs include accessibility and enrichment of the museumgoer’s experience to feel a stronger sense of presence within historic moments.
In this presentation, I will share the development of my collaborative projects and some inspirational projects by other creative researchers, which are establishing the experiential and therapeutic significance of the application of immersive technologies. In addition, I will put forth an argument for the importance of incorporating immersive technologies into design education curricula.

Fashioning The Brand

Summer Doll-Myers
Graphic Design
Kutztown University

Ann Lemon
Advertising
Kutztown University

The good, the bad and the beautiful of fashion advertising.

What does it mean to wear a label, a logo, a brand – across your chest or on your back pocket? Consumers, especially millennials, are becoming more invested in the brands they love by following, liking, and pinning products in addition to wearing them. The entire brand “story” is built from an archive of images that support an ongoing narrative. Fashion is a $1.2 trillion global industry according to a report from the U.S. Joint Economic Committee.

“Fashion apparel for the teenager is not the first considered purchase,” Wissink said. Teens see electronics as “popularity devices, not utilities.” –International Business Times

It isn’t just about “did you see what he’s wearing?” but more about “can you believe she still has an iPhone 4”?! Millennials are more skeptical about what they see as inauthentic or contrived messages.

The majority of ads for brands found in fashion magazines and online are non-conceptual. With the trend moving toward believing in a brand, ads need to be more than just pretty – they need to be designed around a solid brand concept.

After years of this Intro-Level Advertising Design assignment being used to teach students the power of the image in an ad, this brief got a revamp. First and foremost, students needed to have a concept. They were required to research positioning, and identify a specific audience. Beginning with sketches, they were not allowed to move on to shooting before a big, insightful, on-brand concept was approved. Students then explored the collaborative realities of production by taking on the roles of art director, photographer, casting director, writer, and stylist. We will show the project process award-winning student examples.

 

 

A Selfish Communication

Brian Dougan
Associate Professor of Architecture
American University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

From within the hasty pace of academic change, the absence of certain platitudinous expertise in design education together with an emphasis in nascent design technologies has resulted in an unavoidable deficit in terms of how students work. The contemporary attack is often cold, hurried and lackluster. I am impressed by student’s many technological and sociological advantages and their fluencies in calculation and fabrication methods, but disappointed with their abilities to negotiate their own human sensitivities. My default role in most every creative academic endeavor is to teach students how-to-do whatever it is that requires doing. How-to work might be a better way to describe the role or even, how-to communicate – communicate to the immediate community, the professor and most importantly, to themselves. How to speak well about what it is they are trying to say. My role is to teach them that how they say something fundamentally effects what that something is.

I am developing an approach for teaching design students how to be drawers. It is about learning to draw and drawing to learn. In a first year drawing studio, I orchestrated a series of lessons about “seeing” in relation to coordination; a craft based approach emphasizing how one cooperates and coordinates with tools. The lessons are concerned with hand/tool coordination and with hand/eye coordination. I initially rely on blind contour exercises stressing an honest relationship between the seer and the seen. Eventually the seers are liberated from exclusive blindness to varying degrees of judgment. I have been calling this process, ‘the spectrum of judication’. Through the student’s virgin eyes, the poles of the spectrum are in diametrical opposition – immeasurable quality and calculated recognition. The intentionally gradated engagement has produced a generally high quality of product and a rather large collection of seemingly confident young drawers.

Colloquium 3.1: Kean University

Design Incubation Colloquia 3.1 (#DI2016oct) will be held at the Kean University in Union, New Jersey on Saturday, Oct 22, 2016. This event is open to all interested in Communication Design research.

Hosted by Robin Landa

Saturday, Oct 22, 2016
Time: Starts 12:30pm
Kean University
Green Lane Academic Building 6th Floor
1000 Morris Avenue
Union, NJ

Design Incubation Colloquia 3.1 (#DI2016oct) will be held at the Kean University in Union, New Jersey. This event is open to all interested in Communication Design research. RSVP with name and affiliations if you plan on attending.

Abstract submission for presentations deadline Oct 1, 2016.  For details visit the Call for Submissions, and Submission Process description.

Directions
The Green Lane Building houses Barnes & Noble. It is on Green Lane (across the street from the main campus), adjacent to the new NJ Transit stop. People can take NJ Transit/Raritan Valley Line from Penn Station.

 

From Union Station: Located at 900 Green Lane in Union, N.J., the station is directly across the street from Kean’s main campus. Union Station is on NJ Transit’s Raritan Valley line, which runs northeast to Newark Penn Station, and southwest to High Bridge in Hunterdon County.For a Raritan Valley line train schedule, click here.

Presentations

Look Closer: Interaction, Interpretation, Environmental Storytelling
John Delacruz
Professor of Advertising
School of Journalism and Mass Communications
San Jose State University

The Rise of the Design Entrepreneur
Denise Anderson
Assistant Professor
Michael Graves College
Kean University

Fashioning The Brand
Summer Doll-Myers
Graphic Design
Kutztown University
Ann Lemon
Advertising
Kutztown University

Eat Your Vegetables: Sneaking in Conceptual: Thinking during Technical Instruction
Suzanne Dell’Orto
Adjunct Lecturer
Fine & Performing Arts
Baruch College, CUNY

Designing Immersive Experiences with Empathy
Ed Johnston
Assistant Professor
Michael Graves College
Robert Busch School of Design
Kean University

BREAK (2:00PM)

The City of You
Robert J. Thompson
Assistant Professor, Graphic & Interactive Design
Department of Art, College of Creative Arts & Communications
Youngstown State University

How Hard Is It To Navigate A Rectangle? Harder Than You Think
Neil Ward
Assistant Professor of Graphic Design
Drake University

A Selfish Communication
Brian Dougan
Associate Professor of Architecture
American University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

Idea Incubator: The Architectural Design Studio Experience and the Nurturing of Creativity
Craig Konyk AIA
Assistant Professor of Architecture
School of Public Architecture, Michael Graves College
Kean University

A Start Up Simulator: Collaborative Design Studio
Efecem Kutuk
Program Coordinator Industrial Design, University Lecturer
Robert Busch School of Design
Michael Graves College
Kean University

Trianimals
Ned Drew
Professor

Department of Arts, Culture and Media
Rutgers University

Brenda McManus

Assistant Professor Graphic Design

Dyson College of Arts & Sciences
Pace University

Look Closer: Interaction, Interpretation, Environmental Storytelling

John Delacruz
Professor of Advertising
School of Journalism and Mass Communications
San Jose State University

The creative industries rely on interdisciplinary practices. They require team working skills and the ability to learn, support and help others in an increasingly inter-disciplinary environment.

Students at San Jose State University who aim to enter the creative industries have been working on a project with Santa Clara County Parks creating interactive and interpretive story tree installations on the Coyote Creek Parkway Trail at Hellyer County Park. This is the Coyote Creek Fables, part of a bigger project of artworks to be sited in Hellyer Park.

Our presentation will explore how the student team has evolved and produced a body of work that will exist in a real space, enhancing the trail and the Ranger-led talk, and online, supplementing the Coyote Creek fables with information and interactive elements shaping the user experience. How did the design process unfold? How did the experiential and improvisational pedagogical approaches help shape the outcomes? What are the Coyote Creek fables?

The concept, inspired by the Ohlone tribes of California and their associations with totem poles, is intended to enhance existing interpretive programs, while encouraging trail users to take a closer look at the wildlife found along the multi-use Coyote Creek Parkway Trail.

Our design team is a diverse mix group of undergraduate and graduate students with backgrounds in graphic design, journalism, photography, advertising, and mass communications. The project has enabled them to engage in collaborative, experiential practices where different skill sets have allowed peer mentoring to drive them to their final products.

The student team has engaged in peer to peer collaboration, and found ways to work remotely at times. They have developed awareness of natural history and environmental stewardship as they flex their creative muscles. The overall learning experience has provided them with a skill set that will help them navigate their future careers in the creative industries successfully.

The Rise of the Design Entrepreneur

Graphic designers who aspire to become entrepreneurs can achieve their ambition by tapping into their well-cultivated ability to think creatively, generate ideas, and help clients bring their concepts to market through the creation and execution of commercialized branding programs.

In many cases, however, both students and professionals simply lack the fundamental knowledge or experience to translate original ideas into viable and actionable business opportunities. Graphic designers who want to bring their ideas to market need to know what to do, how to do it, and where to find the network and resources necessary for launching and building a sustainable enterprise. They need to think and act more like traditional entrepreneurs, and to accomplish this, they need supplemental business education that fully considers the life cycle of a product or service as it makes its way from idea to market. They must learn how to evaluate risk and the impact it may have on their business. Additionally, they should understand the traits common to entrepreneurs, as well as how to draw upon or develop similar qualities in the context of their role as graphic designers.

The Rise of the Design Entrepreneur will feature yet-to-be-launched business projects, survey results that reveal the business fundamentals that design practitioners say are essential bringing ideas to market, and recommendations for resources that will help graphic designers achieve their aspirations.