Graphic Design Students Hold Final Showcase of Work
It was the culmination of years of education, a semester of planning and several weeks of intense, round-the-clock work. This past December, some of Auburn’s newest graduates presented the Graphic Design Senior Show in the School of Industrial + Graphic Design’s Wallace Hall. The show featured the self-directed work of 20 students in their final semester at Auburn.
The Senior Show is presented by students in GDES 4990, a capstone class required for all graphic design students who are about to graduate. They begin the semester by proposing an idea to a committee of faculty members and then develop a proposal for “deliverables,” which are the types of design products they will present. Websites, logos and branding materials are the norm, while some students go outside the box with promotional materials like t-shirts, mugs and vinyl decals. The students develop their own brands, creating a hypothetical client scenario.
Samantha Herbert, chair of this semester’s faculty committee and Associate Professor of Graphic Design, said the show featured a wide range of projects. “This last semester we had fashion lines, a movie/pub brewery, a charter fishing company, a snack box subscription, an electrical contractor and a dance performance—a big range,” Herbert stated. “Some other interesting topics were a women’s Mexican wrestling team, a Southern-themed bar located in a decommissioned church and a restaurant located in a zoo. Everyone did high quality work.”
Herbert said the show is important because students must take responsibility for their work and manage their time without the faculty member oversight they would normally have in a class setting. Also, once approved by the committee, students are given the freedom to create a project that is meaningful to them. “It’s their last opportunity to do a project that’s all theirs without client restraints. That’s the fun part,” said Herbert. “It gives them a chance to start depending on each other more. The relationships they make in school will continue in the real world.”