Friday, August 28

ds: local rebrand

client: Santora's Pizzeria 

The owner's great grandfather Antonio Santora migrated to America from Naples, Italy in 1880, bringing with him family traditions and recipes.  Santora's Pizzeria opened in 2009 using his same recipes! It's located on 39th & Main St., so conveniently a Midtown favorite. It's well known for it's $1 cheese slices. (an art student favorite).


but once I tried to go inside, I sadly noticed that the business had been shut down...

This kinda makes me want to redesign the brand even more, but if I'm not allowed then I've also photographed Joe's Pizza (by the slice) & I can still go from the concepts I've started for Santora's. 

the problem:
The main problem I have with the design is it's inconsistency. There's fun hand-painted food illustrations with bright colors that seems pretty disconnected with everything else. I'm not quite sure what exactly the logo is because the name is written in so many different typefaces / styles. 

Also, the website is just pretty out of hand. There are too many display typefaces and it's on top of the harsh brick background. I get what they were trying to do here, this urban Italian vibe, but it just isn't working. The menu (at least the online version) has the same problems.

(the following is a working process) :) 

concept 1: integrity 
maintain the kind of "hole-in-the-wall" feel, but well designed. 
some ideas / examples:
exposed brick walls, wooden stools / tables, etc. Make it feel more like a wood oven pizzeria. 
The menu's on brown or white paper with black type, all in one typeface. 

concept 2: indulgent/ bold/ in-your-face
I like this idea of "food-porn", so I'm kinda going off that.
I want the food containers to be see thru, very sexy. 

concept 3: concession stand 

Thursday, August 27

va: ideas + research

Rose Brooks 

Rose Brooks is a safe place.  It provides immediate and safe housing to families escaping violent homes. It’s an emergency shelter that offers women an opportunity to rest, repair, and reconnect with themselves and their children in a safe and supportive environment. More than 800 children and woman find safety at Rose Brooks Center a year. Rose Brooks give special attention to children to teens because a child who witnesses violence is four times more likely to be violent or a victim of violence as an adult. Rose Brooks is also one of the only shelters that also accept pets. They have an animal shelter to ensure that all members of the family escape the abusive home.

Although I have done some volunteering at Rose Brooks, it’s hard to identify what  “problems” this company has without more interaction. But I can imagine that there could be improves made. Possibly nicely designed encouraging posters for the halls of the building or an addition to their security system to insure safety of the residents. I’m not sure what technologies are in place, so I would have to learn these things in order to come up with solutions.


Unbound is an international nonprofit that works side by side with people in 20 different countries, bringing people together to challenge poverty in new and innovative ways. They provide personal attention and direct benefits to children, youth, aging and their families so they may live with dignity, achieve their desired potential and participate fully in society.  It seems like this company already has a pretty functional online system, where they have a sponsor and an account and everything. But there is a local location, so I would be interested to find out how they run things and what if any holes they have in their system.

LM Alcott Art Center Foundation

The Alcott Arts Center started as an effort to save a neighborhood school from becoming a minimum-security prison in 1999. At the time the area was troubled with old abandoned truck stop buildings across the street from our school building and a less than desirable motel that rented rooms by the hour.  After a battle for the building, this group of people joined in and organized a fact finding committee to make sure that what ever was in the school would be something positive and that it would benefit a large variety of people bringing opportunities to the local KCK area, as well as preserve the wonderful old building. It became an Art Center. Alcott is a regional Arts Organization with interaction with Artists, Actors, teachers and sponsors from all over the area and country.  It has been operated and run by unpaid / volunteer staff all of the thirteen years in service with over 40,500 hours donated to this organization.

Wednesday, August 26

va: reading responses

Design Thinking: A Useful Myth by Don Norman 

I really enjoyed this article. It was humbling and brought me to something I can relate with. Constantly surrounded by designers, sometimes I felt like "am I missing something?" No. I just don't have a superpower: "design thinking." This is why our department exists on an art campus and why we designers go through the same Foundations program that all the other artists on our campus. We all are creative thinkers, constantly creating new strategies. Although I do understand the importance of radiating this idea of "design thinking." As we are also taught in this department, design isn't just making something look pretty. So that's a great term to use when describing how essential design really is to an outsider. So no one else needs to know that I don't have a superpower.

What does designing for "good" mean? 

Design for "good" means to design with a meaningful or greater purpose. Designing for good, essentially means to question what we do and who we do it for. Overall I'm really excited about the experience to use my 'superpowers' for a real life good cause.

Good Citizenship: Design as a Social & Political Force 
Designing for Social Change 

-Immersing yourself can mean many different things. Sometimes you may need to fade into the background and observe, while at other times you might need to work side by side with members of the community.
-Designers need to give up a certain amount of control.
-Different levels of getting to know a community can lead to different results.

(Build Trust)
-Requires full authenticity and relationship, otherwise they will feel used
-Prove that you are serious about partnering with them to improve their lives.
-Earning trust will help you connect emotionally with the community members and their problems / take pride in your design solution
-Being invested will cause your designs to reflect the personality and ethos of community members

(A Book by its Cover: Reading Stereotypes)
Masri’s project dealt with the uncomfortable topic of racism and discrimination, so teachers were a little weary for him to come in and discuss with their (8-10 yr old) students. But once he clearly provided his good intentions it become an extension of anti-bullying already being taught in the schools. I liked that he didn’t just visit one school or a few schools in the same area. Instead he went to schools so that these kids from all different backgrounds. By having the kids pair up with a student from another school, he started to create relationships with people they may not have ever had the chance to be around. Racism roots from the unknown and little interaction with people outside of another race, so this project broke down those barriers.

(Promise Only What You Can Deliver)
-Once emotionally involved in the community, you may become vulnerable, making it difficult to say no to their requests.
-Social problems deserve realistic design solutions.
-The community will not benefit from idealistic promises.

(Prioritize Process)
Prototype and get feedback from the community before tackling final ideas / designs

(Confront Controversy)
With taste and playfulness

(Stories of the City)
Social media allows us to connect with people from all over the world but few of us actually know our next-door neighbors.
Without creditability and trust, Allen’s neighbors were very reluctant to be apart of her project. I like that Tyler suggests that he will talk to parts of the community about the project before sending his students out.

(Identify the Community’s Strengths)
-Do not have the tendency to place heavy emphasis on the problems. Instead make a list of strengths and challenges.
-Represent them with dignity.

(Utilize Local Resources)
Locate skills and talents within the community you are helping.
This will empower them to deal with similar issues in the future.

(Design With the Community’s Voice)
-Get feedback from the community throughout the design process.
-It’s not important what it looks like as much as how it changes behavior or how it can give a voice to a community.
-As long as the community engages with it and feels a sense of ownership- most important

(Give Communities Ownership)
-“Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime.”
-Show steps of design process—such as setting goals, researching, prototyping, testing, and implementing
-Look for ways to give your final design a form that can be easily duplicated or implemented so the community can add or modify the design on their own.

(Sustained Engagement)
-This relationship should feel like a friendship
-discover another way to stay in frequent contact with community leaders
-it will take time to get to this stage and it may be difficult to sustain that close connection

mx: mind map + planning

Our main idea for this project is "KC pride" basically bringing together all of Kansas City's subcultural(s) / communities together. We really want to highlight local businesses and have a "one stop shop" so to speak to find anything you need to know about our city. We want to include events, activities, places with sub sections such as music, arts, sports, active, foodies, night life, and historic fun facts. We plan to actually go out and talk to business owners / interview them for our research. We've made a list of locations we're interested in visiting. Our next steps will be to contact them and set up interviews. We also have set some goals but still need to figure out scheduling and deadlines. 

list of local businesses:

Makers & Artists/Designers
West Side Local
Normal Human
Maker Goods
Brass Tacks
Bernstein Rein
Easy Tiger
Band Wagon
Two Tone
Owl & Mouse
Basement Soap
Casey Ligon
Made in the Middle
La Cucaracha
West Side Story

Barrel 31
Joes BBQ

Record Machine
Mills Record Company
Riot Room

75th Street Brewing Company
Beer Kitchen

Oddly Correct
Little Freshie
Filling Station
Thou Mayest

preparation goals: 

Calling Ahead
-gather numbers / info from all businesses 
-have a written statement we all know to say

Business Cards 
-gather contact info
-come up with introduction 
-figure out how we are printing
-design style

Film Prep 
-film handling / testing
-list of questions

-set deadlines
-get cheap calendar for this project

Research Poster
-due 9/16
-need significant research like a week 
before so we can have time to design