For over a decade, students from 33 high schools across the region have signed up for annual workshops hosted by The University of Tennessee School of Art. Approximately 100 high school students sign up each year seeking to experience a collegiate level studio workshop setting. The event culminates into an inter-disciplinary gallery show.
The Art Academy 2012 Graphic Design workshop description: Experience a day of hand-on improvisational design. We will explore design that makes something out of nothing. The content generated by both individual and group actions through the day will result in posters that are sculptural and/or cinematic in nature. Think handmade and theatrical-set techniques, not computers.
For the first exercise, we analyzed +41's Nike Germany ID Air Max I campaign (without the students knowing the client or the product was initially.) Unpacking the visuals came naturally to the group: What is this creative about? Who might buy this product? and What traits or characteristics of the product are emphasized? We moved from unpacking the creative to using it as inspiration for an improvisational class portrait. Very quickly, the students took over all responsibilities for problem solving, art directing, staging, and documenting the work.
We started the second exercise of the day with a brief discussion on texture. For inspiration, I shared examples of the various ways other designers have used texture to convey meaning including YCN/ Young Creative Work Network, London Alphabet art directed by Alex Bec and Michael Bojkowski. After handing out 4 letterforms as templates for the texture studies-- the group was on their own to make a poster.
After lunch we looked at works in which the use of color plays a large role in shaping the meaning including the works of PLEASELETMEDESIGN's Funk Sinatra Season 3 & 4. Then, the class divided into two sections, completed a scavenger hunt around the building for either orange or white materials, and finally created two different series of posters.
With time remaining in the workshop, the students splintered off at will to make other works based on any design principles and technique they wished to use.