What are you learning about yourself and your creative process as a result of this unit’s discussion of values?
Values are more objective than they appear to be, as what we choose to do through our design does affect others, whether we intended the impact or not. My creative process inherits personal perceptions of the world and this weeks discussion of values has made me more aware of what this means when design is driven by personal values alone (some being very different from others). I do believe that a degree of difference is preferred because there is a richness of seeing a value through the many facets of understanding it beyond my own. I also am aware that I must be careful of the values that I instill or refrain from using in my work and to the best of my abilities foresee what happens with my design as I am creating it and after it becomes the voice of something else. An example that came back to me this week from an earlier class is Paul Rand’s logo designs for large corporations. He couldn’t predict what Enron was going to become beyond when he designed the logo, but he said there were companies that he did turn down because he was initially aware of their beliefs and they were contradictory to his own. My creative process has a fairly consistent route, but it is forever changing based on the type of design I am doing for a project. There is really (to me) no singular voice that goes into work over and over again by the same designer. The values I possessed when I first began designing are immensely less developed than the way I approach work now. It is a reminder to myself to constantly keep abreast of my own methods and why I do things. I will likely feel that the way I design now was very immature when looking back upon it from a future date. That is just how design goes as it is an act of our present self every time we sit down to create.
How do you find that values (personal, political, cultural, etc.) inform your creative practices?
Values of all kinds affect my creative practice as I learn about them. I think of values as drivers to my inspiration, since they are often the fruits I pluck from my mind to interpret into a design. Examples are social issues, personal obstacles or growth that I have experienced, and political disturbances or hopefuls that I set my sights upon. The best designs I have ever produced have grown out of a personal belief or understanding that I creatively expressed to communicate with others. Almost every graduate project I have completed while a student at SCAD so far has stemmed from some value that informed my process. The same happened as an undergrad. I think this happens because those values are how we reach into ourselves as humanitarian individuals and are able to face these issues head on through design. Creating for a purpose is more gratifying to me than creating for the sake of creating. It is a work ethic that is inside of me that keeps me pushing an idea and feeling like it is something beyond a selfish motive of my own. My practices are always adapting to new avenues of communicating these values as well. Whether it is out-of-the-box reinventions of old means of communicating or experimenting in a completely new channel, having a value to inform design decisions is a guiding light and a gratifying result.