Campus Spotlight: FHSU’s Let Your Voice Be Heard! History of Graphic Design and ADP Poster Competition
Fort Hays State University (Kans.) held an ADP poster contest this fall entitled “Let Your Voice Be Heard! History of Graphic Design and ADP Poster Competition.” Students designed posters to raise awareness of political issues important to them.
Above is the winning poster submitted by Jill Herbert
I am a senior in the Graphic Design program at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas, originally from Wichita, Kansas. I plan to graduate in May. Learning the ins and outs of design has really allowed me to find such a strong and expressive way to relay my ideas and thoughts onto a visual plane, and I am forever grateful for that. During my years at FHSU, I have also developed a passion for acting and theatre. I hope to someday be able to merge these two worlds by doing movie poster design.
For this poster, my goal was to open people’s eyes to an extremely grave issue that is happening right under our noses. I chose Dada style because the dirty, raw construction of it strongly aligns with this current issue. Using my own photography, I took an extremely recognizable, Kansas-associated figure (Dorothy), and I corrupted her, dirtied her, and took away her innocence. I wanted to show the ugly truth of what is happening in my home state, and what could be happening to someone you see as just another face in the crowd. People who are being trafficked will display signs of seclusion and be fearful of almost everything. They have a limited amount of clothing and possessions and are unable to travel freely. They may show signs of physical harm, have limited access to medical care, and are in overall poor health both physically and mentally. Know the signs and report it if you see something by calling the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline at 1-888-373-7888.
—Jill Herbert, 1st Place, “Human Trafficking in Kansas”
I am a senior student of Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas, majoring in graphic design. I plan to graduate this spring with a BFA in graphic design. I am from Xi’an City, Shannxi Province, China. For me, design is the way to tell a meaning or a story that behind each product; the way to connect people and the way to convey an influential message to people. Through powerful design, we can change the world. My plan after graduation is to stay in America and pursue a job at a design firm. This country provides such a great opportunity to create and learn from other extremely amazing designers.
The concept of my poster is to remind the pregnant women—who do not want their baby because it would disrupt their life—to stop and think before going through the process of abortion. Through my research, I found that insulin injection is the most common way to abort a baby in the first trimester. I also wanted to hit the viewer hard with a powerful statement: “abortion doesn’t make you un-pregnant, it makes you the mother of a dead baby.” It will definitely get one’s attention and hopefully change people’s minds about abortion. I hope to cause lots of conversation with my poster in order to bring about change.
—Gao Fan, 2nd Place, “Abortion of Convenience”
To me, design is a form of communication. It is an opportunity to reach the world. It is an opportunity to inform, influence, and persuade. Most of my life, I have been seeking an opportunity to shake things up; a desire for a greater level of humanity. I found design to be the perfect fit for the voice I want to express. Graphic design requires great vulnerability and immense courage. It constantly challenges me to function smarter and live lighter. Some of my life’s greatest rewards were found through my design work; however, prior to design, philanthropy, ministry, and various international travels brought me great rewards. As a recent graduate of the Kansas Women’s Leadership Institute (a Study of the United States Institute program), and a combination of these accomplishments as a whole, I have formed my greatest dream thus far. I dream of working in the field of design for social change where my thoughts and opinions can be shared throughout the world with a simple design, such as the one I created for this poster project. Within the last few years, our Kansas governor (Sam Brownback) has made significant budget cuts to the arts education system and the education system(s) in general. As a student who had her greatest moments in the art classroom, and as a student who recognizes the importance of creativity in every field, I find it devastating to watch Brownback “destroy”our state. In my poster, I depict Brownback as a walking tornado upon our state of Kansas. In my opinion, he is crippling the creativity, innovation, and progress of our future.
—Brittany Bange, 3rd Place (tie), “Kansas Brownback Tornado”
Originally from Wichita, Kansas, I am a senior in the Graphic Design program at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas. I am enamored by graphic design because of the diversity of the field and how creativity can be applied to anything one encounters through design thinking. My dream job is to work as an in-house designer for Target on their social media team.
My inspiration for this poster was fueled by my passion for social equality, which led me to support the “Free the Nipple” project. I feel strongly not only about gender equality, but also about censorship. This poster speaks about the censorship of women as compared to how we treat violence by placing a despondent topless woman next to a confident woman wielding a powerful weapon. The poster is presented in a classical art nouveau style because one of the only ways females nipples are allowed to be displayed on social media is through classic art pieces. The poster isn’t intended to present a solution to gender inequalities and censorship, but instead to prompt thought about where our priorities are as a society.
—Amy Smarsh-Johnson, 3rd Place (tie), “Free the Nipple”