The Dichotomy of Design


Design is bitter sweet. It’s being paid to be creative. Sweet. It’s being creative for the sake of money. Bitter. It’s security in your finances at the expense of security in your art. It’s being able to go on a yearly vacation and paying rent in Cosmopolitan cities. It’s relinquishing creative control at the behest of the client. It’s both an ideal and, paradoxically, as real as it gets. Our culture dictates. Refuse the dictation and you will pay via poverty and ostracism. That’s the realism element. The ideal is you can still express yourself, and let’s face it; even a mild form of creativity like client-work is an improvement over the majority of occupations in the world. Designers are allowed to be inspired and likewise to inspire. That’s the ideal. My goal is to learn the tools, become a competent designer — run-of-the-mill, initially — and then, once I have the experience and stability, I plan to slowly sneak my idiosyncratic conceptions with more frequency into each project (with the blessings of the client). The fringe benefit of course is I’ll have obtained the knowledge and experience I need to work on my own little artful side-projects, should my attempts to share my creative vision with the clients be rebuffed. Likely.


Graduation and Awards Show : Class 24

Graduating Class 24

On Thursday, April 18, 2013, the 24th Class of the Digital Design program had their Graduation moment and then celebrated each other’s accomplishments at the Award Show.

The evening started off with Digital Design’s Program Manager Lizzie Hudson who introduced our host for the evening, Digital Design’s Head of Department, Miles Nurse.

Miles thanked the families for their support, which the students definitely appreciate and need during the rather intense year-long program. He thanked the students for their professionalism, for their endurance and fierce dedication. And he reminded them of their incredible achievement during the program. He asked them to reflect on how much they had actually produced during this time, and reminded them of what a great opportunity it was for them to be that creative — producing more work in one year than a lot of professionals manage over the course of their careers. He also reminded them of some of the fun that was had, and pointed out the importance of embracing failure, of failing often and moving on. He said that VFS doesn’t change who you are, rather, it shows you what is possible — what you are capable of.
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Appetizers : Class 24

Appetizers April 16 2013 Class 24

On Tuesday, April 16th, 2013, VFS Digital Design held it’s Industry Night event, Appetizers, for it’s 24th class. Appetizers is the penultimate event for Digital Students, held just two days before Graduation and the Awards Show (Thursday, April 18, 2013). It begins with a short meet-and-greet at 5:00pm, followed at 5:30 by the Graduate Project Presentations, which goes for about 90 minutes. Each student gets 3 minutes to introduce themselves, to explain the problem they’ve addressed, their process for coming up with a creative solution, the tools they mastered to help, and then show a brief video piece of their results.

Appetizers Class 24 group shot

It can be very difficult to tell the full story of your project’s development in just 3 minutes, but the students did a great job of it last night. Congratulations to them all for their hard work in realizing their creative ideas!

The theatre filling up for Appetizers

It was a full house last night, with many Design companies and studios being represented, including EA, Tidal, Ayogo, RelicSwitchDesign StampGiant AntDareTaxiDDBCossetteEast Side GamesBlast RadiusSequenceAxiom ZenAequilibriumInvoke Media and Linetest.

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What’s the Big Idea?

What's the Big Idea?

In the Big Idea class, Digital Design students are introduced to real world project workflow. They work on developing meaningful experiences for a target audience by creating campaigns that potentially have long lasting positive impacts.

The project is about using information design to transform unpalatable data points into narratives and visualizations that actually mean something to people. The students conceptualize campaigns and deliver integrated design experiences using multiple platforms. It is one of the touchstone projects of the year at VFS.

In 2011, students Paul Belen, Luis Francisco, Felipe Dos Santos, and Tamish Aswani created a massively successful anti-bullying video called Cyber Aware, which went viral, getting over 6,000 hits on youtube alone.

The 25th Digital Design class tackled this challenging project with their trademark gusto. The following groups each took on different briefs:

Signature7 — Ismael CosioChris ChanJaime Ugarte, Craig WilsonMatt CoadyNatasha Tentes and Seerat Bawa 

When It's Gone
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On the Wall : March 2013

On the Wall - Mar 2013

In the early weeks of each new term, the students in Digital Design are encouraged to submit images from work that they did in the previous term. They are welcome to submit anything from character or logo designs, interface mockups, to even screen captures from their motion design work. The work is then posted online so that all of the Digital Design students can vote on the work, resulting in a “Of The Students, By The Students” selection of winners, who then see their work framed and mounted On The Wall around the campus.
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