⟵studio garner


document design ◦ prototyping

The RCID is an interdisciplinary program in Clemson's Graduate School. It is focused on the intersection of meaning, historical communication, and digital futures. The program had several unforeseen digital and print visualization needs. I worked with them on 4 fronts: documents, surveys, social identity, web design.

Built for: Clemson RCID
Built by: J. Ryan Garner
Built with: Adobe XD, AE, Affinity

To begin with, the program had a complex PhD process that was only roughly articulated in a handbook. Students could not decipher their own path to success. The leadership continued to return to the same textual measures to clarify these problems.
By adding MORE sentences they only excacerbated confusion. What they needed was a simplified but precisely accurate visual layout that allowed a student to see their entire course map at a glance.

It was important not to simply bypass all of the instincts of academics by creating an application UI or adding another software. Most academics still want printable documents rather than a digital interface. Therefore, I created a document that was digitally editable but remained materially accessible.

In addition to the logistical needs, the RCID did not have a consistent digital mood or aesthetic. I provided a few banners and avatars that helped give the RCID a unique look while staying within the larger university brand.

The RCID is housed under the College of Arts and Architecture. The incoming Dean of the college needed help organizing his professor and graduate student data. He asked me to develop a program that would allow him to solicit information from departments wherein that data would be redistributed to a simple printable document.

I used simple Google tools with the help of some plugins. The design element came from the way I delivered this information and process. I created a wireframe walkthrough and a tutorial website.

I also decided to create a rhetorical repository of sorts. Many students come into the program with diverse backgrounds. Therefore, the standard rhetorical lexicon can be alienating. I designed a website called Pillcrow that would operate as a kind of encyclopedia of rhetorical history. I also
created a promotional video for it.

The design features—Pillcrow—played on the symbol designated for a paragraph while also cross-referencing the famous Corax the Crow who is mythically considered the father of rhetoric. The mark is an ambigrammatic take on those two.