And I’m Back (Assign. 1: Design Manifesto)

After a long break from posting, I’ve returned to this blog! I’m happy to say that that the last 9 months have been incredible. I finished my first year of art school and am currently in second semester of second year. I feel bad that I stopped posting here, because it was a great place to put my sketches and talk about process. But, with the start of a new design course, I’ll be updating once again. With that, here’s a sustainable design manifesto I created for my design class.

Explanation of Thought Process and Self-Assessment

This project began with research. I read the Riot Grrrl Manifesto, the Draft Craft Manifesto, 1000 Words: A Manifesto for Sustainability in Design, DAM, and checked out the GDC’s Sustainability Hub. I took inspiration from these sources when I created my own manifesto, so please check them out, if you like what I made.

From my research I learned that sustainable design is more than environmentalism. The GDC website provides a good definition, which I’ll summarize: Sustainable design employs sustainability principles. Practitioners consider the full life cycle of products and services, and commit to strategies that value environmental, cultural, social and economic responsibility. The City of Marion website defines cultural sustainability as “developing, renewing and maintaining human cultures that create positive, enduring relationships with other peoples and the natural world.” This is why I included commentary on appropriation, stereotyping, and critical thinking in my manifesto.

Thinking about sustainable design prompts questions like “are you using the most environmental materials and methods?” “Does your design promote the conservation or destruction of the natural world?” At this point in my career, I’d like to specifically explore what cultural sustainability means, and integrate what we’ve learned about Canada’s aboriginal culture into my work.

In terms of aesthetic, I naturally draw “comic-book” style cartoons, and funnily enough, this style has earned me the most paid jobs! Money isn’t key, but the point I want to make is that there’s a demand for your unique style, whether it’s goofy or serious or something else entirely. Comics influence everything I create, and so I used a comic style and communication device (speech bubbles) in this piece. I would like to work as a comic artist one day, and I think this style would catch the eye of prospective employers.

Process Pictures and Final Image


With all of the above in mind, I put thought and effort into this piece, but improvement is always possible. I’d give myself a B+.

Here’s a link to a PDF version of the manifesto.

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