AIB Design: Visual Research

The Project in Detail


The City of Boston has a call out for graphic design students to create a design campaign proposal. The goal of the campaign is to inform and excite Boston’s public middle and high school students about green technologies. The city hopes to encourage students to learn about this emerging field and its related job opportunities.

In this semester long project you will use this design brief to develop your own visual research methodologies leading to the design of a campaign. The quality of your research and ability to make your work visible through this process will be the focus of your learning and evaluation.

Project Parts + Schedule

You are required to organize and document each of these parts within a reflective visual assessment to be discussed in class. All ten assessments will be contained within a designed book.

Course and Main Project Overview W, September 9

Part 1: Using graphic design strategies to enter content M, September 14 and W, September 16

Using only the texts provided by the city of Boston, develop at least 3 unique low and high tech strategies for entering this content. Some strategies to consider include list generation, highlighting, text collage, computer coding, color coding and picture sourcing. Present your strategies clearly to the class.

Part 2: What is graph design-based qualitative research? M, September 21 through W, September 30

Explore at least 5 ways to use and show qualitative research photography, drawing, a literature review, research of other campaigns, collections, field notes, observation and library research. Your research must include both pictures and text research.

Part 3: Using interviews to go deeper M, October 5 and W, October, 7

For this audience and subject, find at least 2 appropriate people to interview to gain more insight. Design and present your findings.

Part 4: Practicing iteration:Name and tagline W, October 14

Class review on what makes a successful iteration process. From your research, develop a unique name and tagline. Explore 50 iterations. No class on M, October 12, Columbus Day.

Part 5: Practicing iteration: Visual identity M, October 19 and W, October 21

Class review on what makes a successful visual identity. Using your final name and tagline, explore at least 50 iterations for your visual identity. Create a mood board for your campaign.

Part 6: Design that explains M, October 26 through W, November 4

Class review on what makes successful graphic design. Using your research and own writing, create a design that explains what green technology is in a voice appropriate for middle and high school students. Generate 3 concepts.

Part 7: Design that excites M, November 9 through W, November 18

Using your research and own writing, create a design that excites students about the study of and the fields within green technology. Generate 3 concepts. No class on November 11, Veterans Day.

Part 8: A focus on craft M, November 23 through W, November 30

Refine the visual quality of your visual identity, and designs. Create presentation boards for your designs. No class on November 25, Thanksgiving.

Part 9: Pulling everything together W, December 2 through W, December 9

Collect, refine and design a compelling visual presentation that shows your research and design process. Use your presentation boards to supplement your presentation.

Part 10: The final presentation M, December 14 and W, December 16

Present your work to an outside jury.

Final class reflection M, December 21

As a class, we will discuss the final presentation and course.

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