GRDS 761 Week 2: Don’t force it

I must admit I am feeling quite anxious about my thesis. I have so many subjects and areas that interest me it has been difficult focusing on a topic and then delve into deeper discussions on the selected topic. I have been working to narrow down my list of interests based on suggestions from the unit 1 and 2 note – History and sports-based design. In the next phase I am working to breakdown the topics with these 2 areas particularly history as that can cover a vast amount of topics. Before I started this course I began thinking about what a Graphic Design thesis consisted of. I have asked friends who have gone through graduate design programs (Industrial Design and Architecture) but they could only tell me they completed a semester or yearlong design project. An MFA thesis has more layers. Like any curious individual I then turned to Google to find answers. After reviewing the infographic from unit 2 on how Google is run on algorithms and processes search results I laughed at myself.  The unit points out something I already knew, but often forget – “the human brain exceeds these algorithmic methods in its ability to make random associations.” This means I can make more unique associations in a topic that will help me generate additional routes of inspiration and information for my thesis topic.  I did come across a few articles over the summer that attempted to breakdown some general considerations:

  • Think of something you feel really passionate about – something you like and would want to discover.
  • Pick a topic that is somehow related to your future career
  • Stay updated on what is going on in the design world

History is a deep interest and passion, but I am looking to pursue a career in sports design so I a feeling a little conflicted about the direction I should take. As I think about the qualities of each I begin to wonder if they can be combined. Sports design and teams in particular have very rich histories. There is a designer here in Charlotte that completed a self initiated design project for the Carolina Panthers. He imagined what their brand would look and how it would have evolved has it been established in 1955 instead of 1995. He uses historical references is the visuals based on the culture of each decade.

Matt Stevens – Daydream Rebrand: Carolina Panthers Hidden History

I like the research behind  the visuals. I know whatever I decide to pursue would need to encompass more than a cool design. This week I plan to sit down and use the mind map approach to see what connections the share. In doing this I am hoping for a little serendipity to reveal something new. I won’t force myself to nail down a topic, instead I will apply method that will encourage new possibilities and ways of view the subjects or even their similarities.


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