This past semester was rough attempting to attend events that did not interfere with work. Now that I had quit one of my two jobs I intend to go to more events, especially ones that can help me clearly express what my installation may be.
Event 1: Entrepreneurial Design
This event was extremely interesting because it related to our Senior Project class. It was compelling to see how similar other students had planned out their idea of a project. I had related to one student’s project in particular who had a personal problem of coming up with an idea for what to draw. She has such a passion for drawing but could never think of something to draw, or anything that would spark enough interest to encourage her to draw. She came up with the idea to create a ‘Mad Libs’ for what to draw. The idea was brilliant! She gave out a couple ‘Mad Libs’ cards for her friends and other students to fill out, and progressed with those cards as her suggestions for drawings. This was one of a few projects that truly related to me because when I first entered the program to SUNY Farmingdale, my passion for drawing slowly disintegrated and I only drew when it was required. When I wanted to draw, I didn’t know what to draw, and therefore never did unless it was required. I enjoyed that her project in specific was so personal that perhaps not everyone could relate to, but yet captured the audience with the solution she came to that almost everyone could relate to, Mad Libs. This sparked my thought process and made me realize that with my Senior Project, maybe not everyone has experienced the frustration of falling asleep on the train and missing their stop, but what can they relate to that will help me to help them see my solution as well. When the student left off with her thank you slide, she invited the audience to create a fun Mad Libs card as well and email her with those suggestions of what to draw next. This also helped me understand that my final pitch ‘thank you’ slide needs to be inviting as well as captivating to leave the audience with something of my own in order for them to participate as well in my solution.
Event 2: Sappi-Ideas That Matter
The Sappi Ideas That Matter program funds designers working to create positive social change in order to impact communities through their design work. The presentation was enlightening to see how many student projects held ideas that launched a process. It felt as if Cheryl had a universal voice for us as designers stating that the program as a whole helps “develop our own voices,” and how “design is a means to a greater end, not an end in itself.” This made me think of the job I had recently quit. The graphic design job I had, I did not consider graphic design. Everything I did every week in fact came to an end and nothing was understood as design just something that needed to look decent with no reason or thinking behind it. I needed out and needed more. I felt relieved to hear Cheryl speak about design being more than what it looks like, but as a seed of an idea. Everything starts with an idea. One of the last slides stated, “Not everyone needs to invent something new. But everyone does need to invent themselves as someone they are fulfilled by and proud of.” I believe this can relate to everyone, especially our Senior Project class. Our project is not just a project, it was an idea we chose because it fulfilled us. As we learn to struggle, entertain, lose, and gain aspects in our projects, we will in turn be proud of it. And lastly, “most boundaries are arbitrary,” us as designers are not restricted. We must take our ideas outside of the box and not continue by what we may think are ‘the rules of design,’ because whatever our idea, if breaking the rule works, go with it. Although this may relate with all design work in its own, it can also be directed particularly toward our thinking behind our Senior Project installations, and to understand that there are no restrictions or boundaries (aside from the 5×5 ft of space).
My progress again is coming along slowly. I’ve constantly had set backs this past year that I’ve let interfere with my progress. I believe that the more I talk about my Senior Project as well as attending events, helps boost my confidence and encourages me as a designer. I hope to make a huge impact at my exhibit and leave people with an experience rather than just a memory.