Design for Good
Create an object that raises awareness of a situation or a cause. The situation or cause should be local. Your object can be a poster or a video for a campaign to raise awareness and/or support. If it is a poster, it should be printable at a size of at least 8.5 x 11. If you are creating a video, it should be no longer than 3 minutes. The inspiration for this is based on the AIGA’s Design for Good platform.
As commercial artists and designers, it should come as no surprise that the majority of what we do is geared towards moving commerce and increasing consumption of goods. What we typically do to offset this is to do pro bono work or work for the common good. The AIGA is helping to promote this idea, raise awareness of the need for design in social arenas and help remind us that design should be a tool for good. We need to always be mindful of the fact that we should be constantly looking for ways to improve the world around us.
Investigate a social issue, cause or a non-profit organization (NPO) that you feel strongly about supporting or raising awareness of. For this assignment, you need to be aware of it’s impact in terms of published numbers e.g. the estimated number of homeless youth in Lane County or the number of animals that are abandoned within a given time frame. Use the most appropriate resources available to start building data for an argument. These resources may be freely available on the internet. Everyone doing this assignment should contact a reference librarian to determine where their best starting point for investigation should be. Research is key to this assignment. Don’t forget to consider who your audience is at this stage. Knowing your audience will help shape how you are making your argument.
Once you have determined what your argument is going to be and how you are going to support it, your next step is to think about how you are going to represent the issue.
The first thing to get out of the way is determining the medium. If you feel more comfortable with static imagery then consider a poster campaign. Some of you will feel more comfortable with moving images, in which case a video will feel like a natural choice for your first decision. Video can be comprised of a lot of things, namely traditional video, animation either through an image sequence shot on camera, or computer based animation. You can also make your video a hybrid of static imagery, motion sequences and traditional video if the project is best served by those decisions. From the very start of the project, you want to make your decisions based on what is best for convincing your target audience that this issue has weight or that your NPO is worth supporting.
If you are going the print route, keep in mind that your images should be able to be printed at their desired size multiplied by 300 pixels per inch. Thus if you had an image you wanted displayed at 5 x 7 inches within your poster, that image should be around 1500 x 2100 pixels minimum to print without losing quality. Avoid using an excess of colors (for an additional challenge try to work with just 1!) or typefaces (limit yourself to 3 at the most). With this exercise, your tools are visual, type, space and your intuition about how they should be arranged. Before using any tools, you should thumbnail at least 10 times and do several roughs when you decide on a layout before even touching a computer to do the layout. Refer back to Golombisky’s text, Whitespace is Not Your Enemy as a guide for laying out your project and other considerations about color, type and space.
For those of you geared towards the creation of moving images, you will want to script and storyboard your idea before breaking out any cameras. Again, refer back to our course text Whitespace is Not Your Enemy to understand what shot types are possible and get an overview of the issues you will want to consider when constructing your sequence. Your time limits are a minimum of 1 minute and a maximum of 3.
Whether you choose a poster or a video, you must use work that you have produced or is licensed for re-use (e.g. CreativeCommons or public domain material or have been given written permission to use.) This goes for everything including but not limited to images, graphics, logos, videos, animations, sounds, and music.
Handing it in
You will be turning this project in just like all the other projects this term (on your blogs) with a few more additions:
- Those of you producing a poster will also need to hand in a version large enough for print at 8.5 x 11 inches in either JPEG, PNG or PDF format.
- Video producers will likewise need to hand in their finished video at full resolution (the same file you uploaded to YouTube).
Both the poster images and videos will need to be handed in to the dropbox on the Class Materials Server at school (sorry, can’t do this from home.) When you name your files, make sure you do so with the following naming convention:
(of course, use your last name instead of putting “LastName” if you would like credit for this assignment.)
When creating your blog post to display your work, you will either embed the image like you have done all term or embed the video like you did for the Animation & Video exercise. Embedding is always preferred to linking and will be necessary for full points on this assignment!
Finally, make sure you categorize this as Term Project so that your post syndicates to the correct areas for all of us in class to find!