The Pewaukee Kiwanis Club sponsors several community events in early spring and summer. Students designed Beach Party tee shirts and RiverRun buttons. Both items are sold at the Kiwanis events in May and June. The client provided the specifications for the two events including the color of the tee shirts, the size they wanted the designs, the budget for the event, which affected the number of colors that could be printed and the parameters of the event itself. Both of the items designed (tee shirts and buttons) are used to promote the the Kiwanis Club. Students had to meet the criteria of each event and meet the client's requirements. This was a worthwhile challenge for students. The class critiqued the work created discussing which designs they felt would be chosen and why.
The designs were submitted to the Kiwanis committee and they chose the winning designs. It was interesting for students to participate in this process and to observe the differences in the class selection and the Kiwanis committee's selections. There were edits requested before the final designs could be printed. Students had to revise further based on the client's requests. The experience was invaluable for students, giving them the opportunity to create for a real client and real event. Seeing their work become an actual product to be sold was a huge boost to their professional portfolios. It was important for students to have the chance to communicate with Kiwanis members to develop the rapport needed between designers and their customers. The winning student for each item received a check for $25.00 and a copy of the button and shirt. This was a great way for students to learn from an authentic experience. Congratulations to Sammy Pfister for her winning tee shirt design and Miriam John for her winning button design.
Journalism is a newly created class at Pewaukee High School and is taught by Mrs. Laura Bengs of the Language Arts Department.. The Visual Art department's Graphic Design class taught by Mrs. Jeanne Bjork collaborated with Journalism to create a corporate identity package for the newly established student publication called The Hook. Corporate identity usually includes the design of a logo, business stationary and 3-dimensional products that may relate to the company. It can sometimes include elements towards a website as well. The goal is for the logo to identify the company through symbols and typography illustrating the company as a recognizable brand, service or product.
The collaborartion with The Hook again included students competing to have their design chosen for the final publication. As part of this process students presented their designs in person to the Journalism class. They discussed why they felt their corporate identity concept was the best for the publication. The Journalism class voted to determine the best logo. It turned out that they liked aspects of several of the student designs, which meant that the Graphic Design students needed to collaborate further with each other to create the final version of the desired logo. Having it be a combination of student individual designs was a unique experience. They adapted the colors and fonts based on the request of the class. The authenticity of this process went beyond assessment and grading as the satisfaction of the client and the publication of the final design were the goal of the end product, not a grade. Congratulations to Sarah Winzenreid whose main design was chosen to be adapted. Sarah collaborated with Kyle Roberts, whose design provided some aspects of the final chosen logo.
Both graphic design experiences provided students with a more realistic work flow that was true to a professional office. Students learned that the final design isn't really final until the client signs off on it. There are often edits and changes that must ocurr along the path to publication. It is invaluable for Graphic Design students to have printed and published works as part of their professional portfolio. It's really cool to see their designs in the community. Authenticity provides motivation that goes beyond traditional assessment and grading creating a learning environment that is more true to the work environment of these future graphic designers.