Why design for this?

Commercials lie. We all know this. Ads try to hook you with the idea that buying whatever they're selling will make you cool, attractive, healthy, wealthy, and anything else that sounds good. The products themselves are disguised as innovations, but honestly most of them are trivial and a waste of cash. Do you really need Snuggies, or the new Calvin underwear, or pre-measured ingredients delivered straight to your door via Hello Fresh? Or can you just use blankets (a timeless invention), any underwear brand really, and measure ingredients that you went out to get on your own the day of, instead of waiting to have them delivered for a weekly fee of $69?

Honesty and purpose are very important values to me in terms of designing. I know that there are graphic design agencies out there that are not focused on getting you to lighten your wallet. They exist to actually provide solutions—the real innovators in the pack. Join me (and my disenchantment with the current popularity of the advertising field in graphic design) as I explore the two paths of communication design: the Commercial path and the Noncommercial path (which includes non-profits, information design, and design for print) in order to figure just what the hell to do with my education.

Information Is Beautiful

Information design is (or in theory should be) the most unbiased and honest subcategory of design. In its pure form, information design aims to present data in a clear, organized, and engaging way. One designer that specializes in this field is David McCandless. David is an author, writer, data-journalist and designer from London...

McDonald's

Ah, food. We can't live without it...literally. Since the struggle for survival has long since been won here in North America and in other developed countries, food has become so much more than an essential in our daily lives. It has become a pastime, a friend, a source of entertainment, and a main ingredient in the success of many multi-million dollar fast food chains. Notice how I said "a main" instead of...

WCS

When it comes to important causes and nonprofit organizations, Wildlife Conservation Society has always been at the top of my list. Nature plays so many essential roles in our world. Without it, there wouldn't even be a world. I am also absolutely fascinated with wildlife, and have been observing all creatures that I could find on the ground, in the water, or in the sky with intense interest since I was a little kid...

Apple

I attend a university where Apple is the dominant brand of technology. By dominant, I mean approximately 1% of students have laptops that are not Macs. I am the 1%. I don't have anything against Apple in terms of its products. I agree that their user experience is well-planned and the products themselves look nice. There are also several really handy design apps that can only be used by Apple products, which is a nice...

Book Design

I've designed and printed one full-size book for my core typography class, and several small chapbooks for either myself or other classes. I find book design to be fun and accomplishing, especially when I'm designing it for my own content (I've created two chapbooks of my own creative writing in the past month). It hasn't occurred to me until a few months ago that...

Music

Music is, without a doubt, a huge source of inspiration and motivation for me. I love many different genres, ranging from classical music to industrial rock. Anything from Mozart to Marilyn Manson is what I like to say. I'm one of those people that can proudly state that music has helped me through really tough times...

Social Media (and some general reflections)

I started this blog while in the middle of a battle of sorts. On one side was the path I had originally set out to take with my BFA degree, the path of advertising and commercialism. My parents encouraged me to switch from Fine Arts to Communication Design in order to pursue this path because it pays really well. On the opposing side of the battle was my growing disenchantment with...

Information is Beautiful Part II

I wanted to get a copy of Information is Beautiful from The New School's library but unfortunately they did not have it, and NYU is only in the process of ordering a copy, so instead I will be getting Visual Miscellaneum: A Colorful Guide to the World's Most Consequential Trivia. It is another bestseller from David McCandless that presents information in his iconic colorful graphs. I will update this post after I borrow the book...

Graphic design is, in some ways, a Frankenstein; The designer must stitch together elements from several different fields (illustration, photography, writing, psychology, sociology) to form the body, a physical manifestation of the idea they want to communicate.


Maria Zabolotnaya is an aspiring graphic designer (and hobbyist writer) from Brooklyn, NY. She currently studies Communication Design at Parsons. Having originally entered Parsons as a Fine Arts student, Maria has adapted her skills as an artist for use in creating visuals for print and web design. She aims to piece together these abilities with her passion for music and creative writing and work as a designer for the music industry in the near future.