In the first week we were briefed by a lady from the Plymouth council names Hannah whom informed us around the structural change Plymouth is going to experience over the next coming years. As it stands, Plymouth is rather poor and faces a few problems. Some of the issues raised to us were the ageing population causing a burden upon the health services and the tax payer, graduates tend to leave the city which again succumbs to the ageing population and the amount of children leaving education unable to read and/or write. As a group, we were shocked that only 82% of children in Plymouth leave education unable to read and/or write but after discussing it and reflecting upon our own school experiences, we weren’t that surprised. Today, school is more of a popularity contest than it is a learning curve, in my experience it has been anyway. But maybe it differs in the South.
After deciding on our topic, we spend the second week of the experience discussing how we could show the population of Plymouth that the ability of reading and writing is important. At first, Kevin had the ingenious idea of forming a written phone contract that was spelt wrong and made little to no sense, showing that one whom could not read nor write could not possibly understand the important elements of a formal contract, and where that may lead them financially in the future. Then we discussed other possibilities as we didn’t want to limit ourselves to one concept as that isn’t a good practice for a graphic designer.
After thinking about the affects on your life without being able to read or write, we decided on 3 visual concepts we hoped would hit home. After all, what good is a graphic designer that cannot emit emotion from an individual?
- Concept one: A written contract. This will adhere to adults more than children as it shows the responsibility of being ‘an adult’ and how the inability of writing and writing will affect your life in the long run, rather than just getting a U at GCSE and calling it a day. It imposes a long life of hurdles, especially when it comes to legal things such as contracts. We thought along the mind set ‘if you cannot read the terms and conditions of a contract, how can you possibly understand them and the affect it may have on you in the future?’ It could affect you financially and that is something we should all consider.
- Concept two: Sweets. Aimed at children, in fact, people of all ages. We rebranded a famous sweet packet to show the affects the inability to read could have on your health. If you cannot begin to read, how can you understand the nutrition facts on packaging? This could have major impacts upon your health and wellbeing.
- Concept three: Social media. This will adhere to young adults/teenagers as they are the ones whom are most likely to use social media. As you begin to mature, you are warned through out high school, college and even university of the details you disclose on social media. Your name can be searched so easily nowadays by anybody, and if your social media has anything that is sexist, homophobic, racist, fascist and just plain rude, an employer has the right to reject you as this is a reflection of you, and of them if they were to hire you. We began to think ‘what company would hire somebody with bad grammar? Would they be likely to dismiss your application based on your social media?’ We wanted young adults to reflect upon this themselves as they are more than likely to come to the right conclusion.
Overall, as a team I think we answered the brief in the right way. We thought about how we could impact the target audience and worked towards that, whilst also focusing on the problem at hand. If anything, we made individuals think about the problems they would face not being able to read and the struggles it could cause potentially in the future for them. Here is our final exhibition: