My Recipient

Jack Mcdermott-Sweeney

I acquired various information through his designer website and social media, but the response to my questions guided much of personal component. I highlighted major influences.

  1. What is your definition of design?
    1. To design is to think. Design is a way to approach problems and come up with solutions that bridges gaps between disciplines. Design is a practice in empathy and the attempt to understand the experiences of others.
  2. Are there any design quotes that you know or that have shaped your design style/process?
    1. “Effort will never betray you.”
  3. Why design?
    1. I love the ambiguity of design — it’s the perfect blend of art and science. I like the challenge of subjectivity and the process of researching a problem.
  4. What do you hope to do as a designer?
    1. I am a UX designer and product strategist.
  5. What aspect of a gift do you consider the most important?
    1. The most important thing about a gift is who it comes from and what they mean to me. I’m likely to respond stronger to an accompanying note, card, or letter than I am the actual gift. I’m not a very material person so intent is always more valuable than the act of giving.
  6. How the packaging of a gift add to the experience of receiving it?
    1. There are some really cool ways packaging can reflect the character of the gift or even be incorporated with the gift itself. When I had this project in design foundations, I spent the majority of my time working on the packaging — it set expectations for the gift inside.
  7. What’s one thing you wish you would’ve known going into this project?
    1. The receiver might not have anything to say about your gift. When I was in your position, I never got to meet the receiver of my gift, and they never reached out with thank you or, more importantly, feedback. It was a serious bummer — so just know I’ll be sure to express my gratitude.
  8. What hobbies outside of design interest you?
    1. Baseball. Running. Music production. World travel.
  9. How would you describe your aesthetic?
    1. Simple and ascetic. I don’t like flashy or attention-seeking colors, patterns, or tricks. I value bare-bones design sensibilities — look into Dieter Rams’ principles of good design.
  10. How would you describe yourself?
    1. My bark is worse than my bite.
  11. What would be your last meal on death row?
    1. Breakfast bagel and hot coffee.
  12. If you could live the life of a character from a movie or TV show, who would you be? Why?
    1. Leslie Knope, because she has her sh*t together.
  13. What would the name of your autobiography be?
    1. My Short Stupid Life.
  14. You have your own late night talk show, who do you invite as your first guest?
    1. Johnny Cash.
  15. Favorite font?
    1. Helvetica.

Quote Meaning and Plan

Concept Statement

The quote by designer Irene Au, “Good design is like a refrigerator—when it works, no one notices, but when it doesn’t, it sure stinks” speaks of how design is concreted in everyday objects but can be ignored by the population due to its efficiency and harmony. Her humorous comparison of the refrigerator functioning juxtaposed to it not functioning reflects on how design is not necessarily meant to be flashy or overwhelming but can be simple. In similar matters, my gift is simply giving time and tranquility during this tumultuous pandemic. To build upon Au’s words, the video ends with its “breakdown”, proving that function is essential to creating meaning. The gift is a playlist packaged in a short animation and claymation. The purpose is to provide my recipient with music emoting quarantine sentiments. The songs are about loneliness, boredom, positivity, and hope. It is designed to send the message that no matter what one feels right now, they are not alone, and society will endure. The animation provides an invitation to join me in listening to a few samples of the songs. It is me virtually spending time with the recipient. Through the use of movement, the video will give a live perspective on experiencing the music. Shape and form will a transition from arriving to socializing. This is done through the use of 2-dimensional digitally drawn animation and 3-dimensional clay stop-motion film. The clay’s character use smooth texture to provide a clear, legible form. The dynamic playing of the movie will be cut short, abruptly demonstrating poor design. This unfortunate ending reiterates Au’s words of disfunction being noteworthy. Nevertheless, the recipient will be left with the message hidden in the music.

Plan Ideations

Spot the difference, puzzle, virtual scavenger hunt, animation, claymation

***Music playlist added later

Elements and Principles

  • Color
    • Use bot BW and color
  • Contrast
    • Functioning video vs breakdown
    • Black and white isolation vs colorful hope
  • Unity
    • Beginning and end relate
  • Movement in visuals
  • Scale when using clay
  • Smooth texture and clean form in clay for clarity

Function and Meaning

  • “Good design is like a refrigerator—when it works, no one notices, but when it doesn’t, it sure stinks.” –Irene Au
    •  It speaks of how design is concreted in everyday objects but can be ignored by the majority due to its efficiency. She highlights how an object’s design can be appreciated more when broken. Her example of the refrigerator functioning is invisible, but when it does not work it is quite bothersome. This idea had me reflect on how design is not necessarily meant to be flashy or overwhelming but can be simple. This made me reflect how a gift is similar.
    • Quote location and more about Irene Au-
  • Spend time with gift
  • Relate through quarantine
  • Provide sentiments of hope and positivity
  • Introduce source of entertainment in these boring times

Materials and Tools

  • Clay
    • Paper/ cardboard backdrop
  • Animation
    • Motionbook
    • Photoshop
    • Sketchbook
  • Playlist
    • Spotify
    • Just a list
    • Email
  • iMovie to bring all together