Commit 1903f3a5 authored by colmoneill's avatar colmoneill
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all sorts of files left over from graduation

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Title: Thesis conclusions
Date: 2017/01/05
# Conclusions
The questions that drove this thesis have been addressed from my personal experience. I feel very strongly about my field becoming functional utility because I believe in the power of a visually shaped message. It confuses me that the majority of the graphic design I observe in the public, executed by professional shape givers, is not more interested in it's position in relation to the politics of the tools it is created out of. During my training in art school, I used to get frustrated with my peers and I coming to similar visual resolutions to the assignments we had. It became clear after a few of these occurrences that, while we might have had different interests and background cultures, we were receiving the same assignment, from the same teachers, out of the same workshops; and we responded to these assignments with influences from the same lectures, the same blogs, same magazines; then we resolved them with the same tools (and similar methods in said tools, as we had been thought these tools together) on the same computers. Finally we all went to the same print shop and did our final cuts and bindings in the same ‘technical’ room, before assessments. I'm explaining this frustration because I think a lot of what was happening during graphic design school is happening in today's professional design world too. Trends will be trends and influences weigh differently from place to place, but my reoccurring feeling is that a lot of the bits of graphic design I see nowadays tastes the same as the next. It feels similar. It's not unthinkable that these designers would have had similar influences, or followed similar trends, but the taste and the feel I'm talking about comes from composition and from shapeliness. It's like all this design was made on the same grid, or had to abide to the same template. It's like all the production had to conform to the same guidelines, bordering on the line of subliminal. My cynical belief is that this is true, because it is an almost sure bet that these designers have worked within similar environments, within similar influences, with similar design tools, on very similar computers. The consequence of all design looking the same is that it all gets read the same way. Serving the same pictorial facture over and over means that the audience views in comparison, not in difference. This shortcuts to a view of graphic design that is a regularised transaction.
I think the similar compositions and similar shapes come from the defaults and presets the used tools have. Somehow the mould and the cast are identicals, and that ends up being just OK. I'm quite confused and disenchanted by this state of affairs, but I do believe that interesting graphic design can be restored. It can be rebuilt by looking at what it involves to make graphic design today. The re-identification as crafts-people as opposed to sequencers is the first point. Understanding how craft has changed, how tools have changed it, and what it means to practice with abstracting / abstracted tools and understanding the politics that surround these tools is a second point. Seeing that ‘industry interests’ are not to be taken for granted, and that efficiency and speed actually have costs. The costs constitute the third and broadest point of this thesis, about learning curves and their payoffs.
......@@ -36,10 +36,12 @@ Murrey, T., 2009. Sharing good practice, Forum for International Students. [onli
* Briz Nick, 2016. The Browser: how it became the artist's modern canvas. [video online] Available at: <> [accessed March 2017].
* Broeckmann Andreas, 2001. Review: Abstracting Craft: The Practised Digital Hand by Malcolm McCullough, Leonardo, [online] Available at: <> [Accessed November 2016]
* Broeckmann Andreas, 2001. Review: Abstracting Craft: The Practiced Digital Hand by Malcolm McCullough, Leonardo, [online] Available at: <> [Accessed November 2016]
* Fuller Matthew, 2000. It looks like you're writing a letter: Microsoft Word. Nettime. [online] 5 September 2000. Available at: <> [Accessed 22 September 2016].
* Galloway R. Alexander, 2012. The interface effect. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
* Gürses Seda and van Hoboken Joris , 'Privacy After the Agile Turn, in: Selinger et al (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Consumer Privacy, Forthcoming 2017. [online] Available at <> [Accessed October 2016].
* Goldberg Adele and Kay Alan, 1997. Personal Dynamic Media, original publication: *Computer* 10(3):31-41. March 1997. [Available in] The New Media Reader, 393-404, [text online] Available at: <> [Accessed January 2017].
......@@ -50,7 +52,9 @@ Murrey, T., 2009. Sharing good practice, Forum for International Students. [onli
* Manovich Lev, 2011. Cultural software. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed January 2017].
* McCullough Malcolm, 1996. Abstracting Craft: The Practised Digital Hand. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
* McCullough Malcolm, 1996. Abstracting Craft: The Practiced Digital Hand. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
* Morozov Evgeny, 2013. To Save Everything Click Here. London, UK: Penguin books.
- Nelson Ted, 2012. The Myth of Technology/Computers for Cynics. [video online] Available at: <> [Accessed December 2016].
......@@ -2,3 +2,15 @@ Title: Acknowledgements
Date: 2017/01/08
I would like to thank Marloes de Valk, Aymeric Mansoux and Steve Rushton for their writing support. The body of tutors at the Piet Zwart Institute, Master in Media Design and Communications for feedback and project development. Open Source Publishing for their energy, welcome and flexibility. Finally, my family and parents for their enablement, encouragements and support.
### Document information
This document was meant to have a dual existance, on paper and online at It is an assembly of sub section and chapter documents concatinated by [Pelican]( a static site generator. The sources and versions of the files are accessible via the online counterpart.
### License
Aside from any partial ownership the Hogeschool Rotterdam may have over this text, this text is copyleft Colm O'Neill 2017, available under a Free Art Licence
### Font-family
Document set in HK-Grotest, Designed by: Alfredo Marco Pradil & Hanken Design Co.
###### generated on Monday April 10th 2017 in Rotterdam, → pdf
......@@ -90,3 +90,7 @@ They reveal the importance they give to this regulation, and the importance they
This substitution deepens my disidentification. I am spoken to as an individual I do not identify with, and my plain acts of being in online spaces associates me with politics I do not agree with.
## 3 totalisation
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