Opportunity for Experience: Creative Perspectives on Connecting with People
We believe there is a need to reinforce our connection to each other as human beings. Suppose we can return to this concept as a core principle of creative practice and education. In that case, we can create new opportunities to come together instead of driving people apart.
We live in a moment when business and socio-economic demands require rapid pursuit of data and technological advances while leaving behind those same topics’ personal and social sides. We are, as a society, altering our human experience under the illusion of increasing our connectedness. But still, we seek the meaningful connection, the moments that remind us of humanity regardless of our awareness of design and technology.
We are now 18 months into a global pandemic, where life as we know it has been flipped on its head. We are relying more than ever on technology to increase our connectedness. It has suddenly and quickly become less illusion and more real, and we are genuinely seeking connection to reality through technology.
We believe, though, that the pendulum has swung too far in the wrong direction into a world of an extreme pursuit of data and technological advancements while losing sight of human impact. So while we believe the design industry has played a significant role in this swing, we think creative people and perspective can return us to a balance.
I’m proposing a framework and a methodology for design practice and pedagogy—a sort of manifesto of perspectives on human connection.
Nicholas Rock, co-founder of Station is a Graphic Designer, Strategist, and Assistant Professor at Boston University. He received his BFA in Studio Arts from the University of Rhode Island in 2001 and his MFA in Graphic Design from Yale School of Art in 2008. In addition to his role as Assistant Professor, Nicholas is the Co-Chair of Undergraduate Graphic Design and the Director of Graduate Studies at the School of Visual Arts, Boston University. Nicholas spent eight years in the Army and is a veteran of the war in Iraq. In 2018 Nicholas was awarded “Volunteer of the Year” for his work with Peace Love, an international organization using expressive arts programming for mental health awareness and therapy. In 2013 Nicholas won the “Best Book Design” award for the AIGA Best of New England Design Show. He has spent time at the award-winning design studios Open, NY, Tank Design, and Korn Design and has operated his studio practice, Station, in design and strategic consulting since 2011. Nicholas has led projects on everything from architectural publications to brand strategy to user experience collaborating with various design studios across the country on work with clients such as Harvard Graduate School of Design, Apple, and American Express.