“Think” for the design
Meeting and conveying information are fundamental human activities, regardless of the era. Starting with basic lessons in the essential expressive fundamentals of graphic design, namely illustration, photography and typography, students will work on the production of such projects as poster or banner design, and packaging design. The topics will start from “how to think about” rather than “how to make” graphics. Emphasis will be placed on thinking, and thinking again, followed by a repeated trial-and-error process as students pursue the fundamental nature of the expressive means required to convey information. In addition, these projects will not be done as individual works; students will form groups to create their projects, thus fostering the ability to consider a project from the viewpoint of others.
“Feel” for the design
Information should not simply be conveyed; it should be conveyed with sufficient warmth, feeling and even affection. Indeed, the fundamental nature of information design is to convey expression or sentiment. Students must give credence to their own feelings and accumulate as many emotional and physical experiences as possible. This filed will begin with sensory training utilizing all five senses, and a variety of experiential lessons, such as drawing using the entire self. Through these lessons, students will reconfirm the importance of “feeling” and link that knowledge to their specialized courses. Vision is not the be all and end all, rather, when one expresses information to be conveyed, then what remains, what is lacking? The ability to accurately ‘feel’ the answers to these questions is an important sense for creators. Various professionals, including working designers from diverse fields, will be invited to lecture on their experiences in “feeling.”
“Express” for the design
In order to convey information, an ability to edit and compilea variety of materials is essential. Through lessons on the editorial, typographical, diagrammatic and pictogram aspects of information, students will learn the fundamentals of information editing through gathering, culling, combining, and re-assembling information, and learn the techniques needed at each stage in the process. There will be a rich array of opportunities for students to come into contact with actual information production sites, such as the use of graphics software, lessons in creating a book by hand, and study sessions at printing plants. These sessions will also enhance students’ ability to present works and to communicate with society. Through links with industry and local government bodies, students will also actively engage in off-campus design projects, thus directly linking student coursework with real-world situations. The “Design Laboratory” nature of this coursework will provide students with important opportunities for direct experience at conveying information.