School of Art, Media, and Technology

BFACD Student Spotlight: Katie Minchak

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Katie Minchak is a Brooklyn-based designer, illustrator and graduating Senior in Communication Design. She specializes in brand development, graphic design, book design, and creative direction.

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Please Come to the Show was designed as an exploration of documentation in Book Design with Andrew Shurtz. The book contains images from an exhibition in which David Senior, bibliographer at the MoMa, selected a wide range of exhibition-related ephemera—invitations, flyers and posters from the 1960s to the present—and presented them as a historically overlooked but integral aspect of exhibitions.

 

Who do you look up to in the design community?

I’m surrounded by so many talented people in fashion, art, and design and have had the privilege of working with inspiring, women-led creative agencies including RoAndCo and LMNOP.  I look up to the businesses they have built and the beautiful work they put out into the world.

 

How has Parsons shaped you as a designer?

Parsons has made me a much more critical and disciplined designer. Design is a powerful problem solving tool and my time at Parsons shaped the way that I focus and apply my skills. I’m constantly looking to my professors and peers for ideas and inspiration.

 

Parsons also transformed the way I work. I’m no longer satisfied with one project at a time. I feel most comfortable when I’m busy, and find that as I work on multiple projects at a time, different ideas and solutions are presented as I shift my focus.

 

What have your favorite classes been at Parsons?

Some of my favorite classes at Parsons have been Advanced Typography with Jeanette Hodge-Abbink, Type Core Studio with Geoff Han, Book Design with Andrew Shurtz, Senior Thesis with Dave Yun, and Death of Cool with Jessica Glasscock.

 

What are your plans for the next few years?

I plan to start working at a creative agency or in-house for the next couple years. My goal is to make valuable connections and to learn as much as I can about running a business so that I can one day open my own studio. Also, I would love to teach at Parsons in the future.

 

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The New View Campaign posters were designed in Jeanette Hodge-Abbink’s Advanced Typography course. Our prompt was to design activist posters for an organization using only typography. The New View Campaign was formed in 2000 as a grassroots network to challenge the distorted and oversimplified messages about sexuality that the pharmaceutical industry relies on to sell its new products. Sexual problems are complicated, sexuality is diverse, and no drug is without side effects. The goal of the New View Campaign is to expose biased research and promotional methods that serve corporate profit rather than people’s pleasure and satisfaction. The Campaign challenges views that reduce sexual experience to genital biology and thereby ignoring the many dimensions of real life. The New View Campaign is devoted to education, activism, and empowerment.

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I Get Shit Done business cards were created for a friend in an identity design course at Parsons. We first chose three adjectives to describe the person – I chose blunt, confident, and creative. Next, we had to visually communicate these characteristics in a single business card. I used cheeky language and bold typography to best represent her personality.

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Genius, Disturbed, Both, or Neither challenges the relationship between authorship, anonymity, identity,and the ways in which persona is crafted through the internet. The story is framed through a cultural lens by following one active and anonymous author on Craigslist that fits the archetype of a tortured artist. The chosen user, DannyMcDelta, writes in a turbulent stream of consciousness. Genius, Disturbed, Both, or Neither takes place in the small town of Crystal, Minnesota. Informative graphs and journal entries are used to introduce DannyMcDelta’s situation, relationships, and way of life. As the book progresses, and DannyMcDelta becomes less lucid, graphic devices such as typography and layout structure lose control. Readers become immersed in the psyche of an anonymous person. The final product exists as part character study and essay in which identity, the private and the public, and knowledge and the unknown are juxtaposed. The purpose as the author and designer is to find the intersection of persona and reality. Through investigative research, Genius, Disturbed, Both, or Neither explores what happens when content that begins online is taken out of context and brought into the physical world.

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