The State of the Arts: Follow Up

Clarifications regarding the article The State of the Arts: Graphic Design may provide more insight into the piece.

In my previous article, published in the 10th issue of The Crescent, Senior Lehman Pekkola was quoted: “they teach style and communication arts, not what’s new and upcoming.” Pekkola has since clarified that the “communication arts” referenced in the quote refers to the publication, Communication Arts, which is regarded by many as the TIME Magazine of design. “It’s been around for a long time, but like older publications I feel like it’s lost its relevancy, but they still keep pushing it. It’s old fashioned, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It has its pros and cons. It’s important to know what used to be.” Pekkola said.

Sophomore Jordyn Dunseath was on the search committee for the new graphic design professor. The university hired Brandon Waybright to begin teaching starting in the Fall 2017 semester. “He’s awesome. He’s energetic, innovative, and conceptual. There’s going to be a lot of new wonderful classes,” she said.

In the previous article, the class Creative Suite I was mentioned. The class’s structure revolves around professor Bob Bredemeier’s tutorial videos, and Pekkola was quoted as saying “they should be teaching us what you can’t learn in videos.” Pekkola stand by his words, citing Google as an education landscape game-changer in recent times, but adds that “that’s not to discredit all the work he’s put into the videos. But also, in addition to the videos, I think we should be learning more concept.”

“The art department is very technically oriented right now, they’re training us to be technicians and then to think conceptually as we go out,” Pekkola said. He emphasized that this is not a negative, rather a personal preference to start conceptually and move to the technical side. On a similar note, regarding the quote “I’ve had to pave my own path,” Pekkola clarified that the reason for this is “because what I’m interested in is not necessarily what they offer.” Pekkola is interested in print publications, which could be considered more of a niche concentration. “I’m very thankful for all the opportunities the program has given me,” he said.

“The design world is constantly changing. And to keep up with it is very hard, especially for a university,” Pekkola added. However, freshman Allison Spoelhof points out, “they’re doing a good job of understanding what the program needs. With the new jobs coming into the market, especially in the art realm, it’s going to be really cool to see the diversity in the graphic design program.”