Yesterday I gave an hour-and-a-half design breakout session for participants at the 2009 Baptist Media Forum at Camp Buckner, up near Inks Lake. The seminar was entitled Between Heaven & Helvetica: How Good Design Can Energize Your Existing Communications. I hadn't delivered a talk that long before, so I was a little nervous to say the least. I figured I'd leave a half-hour for Q&A and prepared what I thought was an hour's worth of content.
My stated purpose was to "embark upon an interactive, multi-sensory conversation among designers, self-proclaimed non-creatives, quasi-creatives, and people who have to work with creatives in order to sketch at the intersection(s) of good design, good theology, and our role as culture creators." True to form, it was meandering and quirky — a soupçon of history, theology of the Imago Dei, a little design philosophy and advice, and visual inspiration/stimulation (I hope).
About 15 minutes into it, I realized I had too much content, but pressed forward, and we ended up getting through most of it without much compromise. Before I went on, my friend Marcus Goodyear gave a great presentation on online community building; I knew he was going to skew his content heavily (actually completely) online, so I weighted my presentation toward traditional media and channel-neutral branding design.
The preso was a mashup featuring three youth media case studies tied to some theological points I made at the presentation's "history unlesson" ... as well as a gallery of twenty logos I had designed, which I will glom together and present to you below. I also re-fashioned and re-presented my "six design nuggets for non-creatives" talk as a 10-minute overview.
I was really pleased with the mix of people — I asked the group of media professionals (I assumed I'd be getting mostly PR folks, writers and editors) to classify themselves (how modern of me): almost a third of the room comprised designers and creatives. Another third considered themselves quasi-creative, and only one guy thought he was a non-creative.
My friend Tim Snyder made the trip out to the hill country with his visiting friend (my new friend) Josh. They audited the whole session and Josh participated in the interactive [Playdoh sculpting!] portion of the talk as well. With them and Marcus and my friend Brad Russell from The Baptist Standard there in the room, I was more at ease than I would've been.
After the presentation, Tim and Josh and I spent the rest of the day together. On the drive back to San Antonio, we stopped in the Blue Bonnet Café in Marble Falls, TX. That's Josh and his chocolate meringue pie. After that we crashed at my house for a bit ( I really needed a nap) before heading to Alamo Drafthouse Theater to see Slumdog Millionaire.
It was a nice break in the middle of the week.
I leave you with an excerpt from an essay by Leland Ryken that I published in Communiqué back in the day, and dredged up for the conversation yesterday (but didn't have time to share with the group):
Here's a handful of the logos I've designed* — I used these in the presentation:
*the All Saints logo was a collaboration between myself and Von Glitschka, whose work also made it into the presentation.