Confession: I’ve been witness to another driver taking out a metal crossbar as I sat helpless in the passenger seat. Being a little shaken up sparked an idea. Can something be done about road rage? When I learned how to drive, the DMV driver’s manual only had ways to avoid aggressive drivers. I thought, what if I address a teen audience as if they were to become a potential road rager?
I created Routeen, a social campaign against road rage fueled for young drivers. Included in my thesis were a set of three posters, a social experiment clip, and an informational packet. The informational packet included a zine with illustrations and factoids, a “be happy, it’ll drive them crazy” car freshener and laser cut key chains. These items were packaged in a bubble wrap packet (to pop and reduce one’s stress). The ideal setting for distribution would be in a school, particularly a Driver’s Ed course. I chose a topic that almost everyone encounters. My class critiques became fun, as they were filled with non-stop conversations with innovative solutions. It’s a real-world issue and I set out to a design with the safety of others in mind. I couldn’t be more pleased with how much I pushed myself. I dare you to experiment in this season of your life. Youtube tutorials and teach yourself new techniques. Go to a MICA Design League meeting and pose your questions to other members. If you can’t motivate yourself at times, design it for someone you love.
Behind pretty thesis photos that you see are also emotions that crumbled into a million pieces and friends and family that lifted them back up. I remember carrying around a plank of wood feeling like Jonny in “Ed, Ed and Eddy” as I searched for a wood shop open. It’s about trusting through the tough stuff. Realize that your thesis won’t be perfect but should be pointing. I hope these following tips point you in the right direction.
1. Sculpt your thesis down to one sentence with a clear message.
2. Get all your ideas out. If you’re feeling stuck, create a mood board, reach out to friends or find hidden gems at the Decker Library.
3. Create with an atmosphere in mind. How can you target all the senses? My car fresheners filled my space with vanilla. The shelf to display my work was a car grill installed with lights. How can you engage with the audience?
4. Practice your presentation at the end of year. I can’t tell you how many students winged it and went over time. Practicing also shows your maturity level. You worked hard baby! (Hint: Look up Ted-Talks before hand).
Jenna is working at By&LG in Redbank, NJ.
See more of her work at jennagregor.com.