Radford University Scholars' Repository

Overlooked Companions

Morris, Ellen Overlooked Companions. 2021. Radford University,

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Many graphic designers are also fine artists at heart. The graphic design field is based on creating products for a particular client, usually with the intention of making the client money. A fine artist creates work usually meant to be appreciated through aesthetic or intellectual means. I’ve been contemplating this concept of creative intention for a long time. I want to find a way to use my skills, not only to make money for a client, but to also contribute to my community in a more positive and compassionate way. Most of my illustrative and design experience has been founded on the intention of making a profit, whether it was for me or for someone else. It didn’t matter what the content was, as long as it resulted in someone making money. During my time as a graduate student, I found that this reality wasn’t enough for me. To feel fulfilled as a creative professional, I needed to find a way to use my creative passions to initiate a positive change among my community instead of feeling as if I was commercializing those passions. Before starting my graduate career, I worked as the Graphic and Multimedia Designer for three years at Wintergreen Resort in Nellysford, Virginia. This position required me to learn how multiple forms of technology could work together across multiple platforms to convey a consistent, unified message. After working long hours in front of a computer, sometimes I needed to decompress by revisiting traditional art materials. This led me back to exploring my love for acrylic painting. After sharing a few paintings on social media, I started getting requests from family and friends to create custom paintings of their pets. Because this was a great chance for me to keep painting while also making a little money, I took on every request. During the summer of 2020, I was granted the opportunity to paint a large-scale mural in downtown Blacksburg. After seeing the direct impact this mural had on the Blacksburg community, I realized this new skillset was a chance to accomplish my goal of initiating positive societal change through using my design and illustrative experience. Knowing I had the skill set to paint animals, I began brainstorming which local business could benefit the most from these paintings. This is when I came to the idea of creating a mural for a local animal shelter, the Shenandoah Valley Animal Services Center (SVASC). After discussing this idea with my committee, I decided organizing a fundraising campaign for SVASC would offer the chance to utilize many of these skills I had obtained. The forms of media I planned to include in the campaign would consist of a large outdoor mural, several physical paintings, video clips of animals at SVASC, and a website to tie everything together. This paper is from my personal perspective and explains my journey of developing this comprehensive project using a wide range of skills and techniques.

Item Type: Thesis
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NC Drawing Design Illustration
Divisions: Radford University > College of Visual and Performing Arts > Department of Art
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2021 01:35
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2023 19:26
URI: http://wagner.radford.edu/id/eprint/726

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