The essence of graphic design is the visual communication of information with the goal of maximizing understanding — to shed light on the content. The technology, tricks, and tools are numerous and diverse, and thankfully, always changing.
At school, students work on diverse projects that reflect the many aspects of the graphic design field. Projects and studies are always interconnected with zeitgeist, history of the field, world and art history, and people and current issues, mixed with personal vision, research, collaboration with clients and colleagues, and a broad group of talented individuals who come into the program to share their knowledge.
Graphic design is everywhere — therefore graphic designers work with all kinds of stuff and all kinds of people. We work with builders, booksellers, historians, movie directors, architects, product designers, musicians, programmers, fashion designers, writers, dancers, chocolatiers, teachers, students, people who love animals, governments, and sometimes our moms. We are everywhere: on the way to the house, inside the car, outside the house, inside the house, on the shelf, in the fridge, on the bottle, in the pocket, the text, way down in the depths of a deep sea expedition or jumping out of a balloon soaring at the edges of the hemisphere. (We’ve also been to the Moon and Mars, and are floating somewhere in the solar system.)
We’ll show you that tomorrow we can expect mostly sunny skies (a warm breeze with a chance of showers), that your train is due shortly, the difference between mild and suffocatingly hot pepper sauce, that the documentary is about salmon and will open in a few days, that this is a single lane bridge next to a blind corner, that this egg belongs to a duck but not a loon, that the dose is two drops twice a day, that you need to screw and then glue, that the latest album from the band is brighter than the last, that 1 Hallgrímskirkja church tower equals 3,75 sperm whales, that Icelanders are a nation built on magic, who the baddie is, and that quality is always important.
Students learn first and foremost to think creatively, and these abilities come with authority, power and great responsibility.
Graduation projects come in all sorts and call for different approaches and work flows. The students’ aim is to create a whole, challenging and strong conceptual project that convey a certain message in a way that is most appropriate and most effective. In order to achieve this goal students use various tools in collaboration with all kinds of people.
The thing that exemplifies a good project is a strong and clear personal vision which serves and communicates the intended meaning. The studies are a preparation for the infinite diversity of the projects which await graduated designers. Students use critical thinking, understanding of current technology, feeling for zeitgeist, vocabulary of their profession, curiosity, will to collaborate, understanding of the environment, and empathy for people’s needs and their nature, in the goal to communicate, understand, entertain, move, learn and educate.