I love to work with design. From the corporate world to the classroom, I have been known to play for hours with the elements of an artifact. I have created brochures, business cards, invoices, multimedia PowerPoint, and graphic organizers to name just a few. While this may make me look like an expert, the fact remains that each time I create a new artifact, I am always a beginner. Why would I saythis? It is simple. The artifact is never about the creator, but always about the audience. As the creator, I have to consistently and pervasively consider who will be using the artifact, what the intended purpose of its use will be, and how to best covey the message required.
1. Brainstorm Ideas
2. Gather materials
b. design elements
c. text wording
3. Create QR code
4. Execute the design
5. Edit and Revise
The task I chose was to create a flyer for the Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project’s (KMWP) Literacy Conference. I was provided with the theme “Get Connected with Literacy,” a link to the conference website, the request for a QR code, and KMWP’s artwork. With these pieces, I began my creative process by brainstorming possible ideas. As I thought about the theme, I jotted down elements that came to mind. Finally, after much consideration, the thought of collaboration and its link to connection sprang forth as the guiding element.
Next, I chose the platform I would use to create my flyer. My favorite software is Publisher. I know there are other programs out there, but this felt like the software for this project. In addition to the provided artwork, I wanted to add an image of an open book. My favorite royalty free image site Animation Factory. While a membership is required (for a fee) to use this site, I like the variety and the quality of images available.
The process of the design was relatively easy from this point forward. I started with the layout of the KMWP logo. I wanted to make sure that it was visible and aesthetically pleasing. Once placed, I began the process of balancing the images on the page. The focal point needed to be Literacy, so I placed the book in the center. To balance the line created from the logo to the book, I created and included the QR code at the end of the line. The line intentionally will bring the eye into the Z pattern when one views the flyer. Surrounding the image in a border are the mountains of the KMWP logo. I intentionally have them appear to touch as they surround the elements of literacy found in the center of the design. The border appears to be random squiggles, or the connective-ness that is circling the literacy elements. The Font for the title was intentionally reminiscent of the border, again adding to the feeling of free-flowing connection. The colors used were duplicates of the colors used within the KMWP logo. The final element of design was the stars that are shooting from the book. The key words I chose to use came from the text of the KMWP Conference website. I chose these words with the audience in mind. If a teacher considered attending, what key words would peek their interest?
Finally, I added informative text to enhance one’s desire to want to attend, even further. I centered the date and time under the textbook. Then, I included a rhetorical question to allow the viewer to say yes. The last element of text that I added was a paraphrased description of the conference. I kept the tone upbeat and connected to the theme of connectivity and collaboration.
The most challenging component of design falls in the revision and editing component. I could spend hours upon hours changing little elements that many would not even notice, but would forever bother me. This creation was no different. In fact, I decided to walk away and allow my brain to think about the creation for a while before submitting the final product. Three days later, the final idea came to me at the gym, much to my trainer’s dismay! Overall, I am pleased with the design’s simplistic appearance. I feel that I connected with the ideas presented for the conference and I hope that the intended audience feels drawn to attend this conference.