I believe that my students' design solutions can be found at the point where their individual interests intersect with the design problem. In encouraging students to discover these solutions, I suggest to the students several different ways to go about finding the best answer, as opposed to directly telling them how to achieve the goal from my point of view. This method of teaching enables students to embrace their own aha-moments of discovery through exploration based on their individual interests and creativities.
As John Berger stated in his book, Ways of seeing, “We never look at just one thing; we are always looking at the relationship between things and ourselves.” This invisible tie between the real world and each individual is key in developing a creative and unique vision. As an educator and a visual communicator, my teaching approach is based on this common belief that we all live in a cage that has been shaped by our own perception. The cage consists of many bars. These bars reflect an individual’s personal experiences, backgrounds, their level of education, etc. This cage can be thought of as a perceptual filter on one’s eyes and mind that helps the individual perceive and represent the tangible and intangible. Today’s students, having been born in the digital age, can “bring many different skills to school” and might “have more recent, more accurate, or even more relevant information in some field” than his or her professor as Victor Papanek described in his book, Design for the Real World. Although all students have their own unique skills and ways of thinking, similar to that of a gemstone, these individual intellectual assets need to first be dug up and polished before the student is able to wholly realize his or her full potential. Through in class practice, students will develop the ability to embrace their individual perceptual filters, thereby allowing for the creation of fresh ideas that can then be contributed to the field of graphic design.
Teaching Philosophy Quick samples of Student works
ART 191: Introduction to Graphic Design – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
ART 1102: Introduction to Graphic Design – Appalachian State University
ART 2302: Calligraphy – Appalachian State University
ART 3202: Interaction Design I – Appalachian State University