Define a problem that exists, and explore creative design solutions for that problem.
I started out the discovery phase of this project by identifying topic possiblities by listing things I like, dislike, problems I see in the world, problems I think can or cannot be solved, and other things that I am passionate about, and eventually narrowed down the topic to music education. Every year more school systems across America are cutting back on the funding of music education programs. I began my research thinking I would try targeting a high school student audience, and their parents in efforts to engage students in music education to increase support for music education programs, which could then increase funding. However, the more I researched the benefits of music education, the more data I found to support the importance of music education in the early years of a child’s development. Parents and students need more awareness on the benefits of music education for grade school students. This caused me to refocus and gear my research towards a different audience than initially anticipated.
Topic for Investigation
I want to engage young students in fun interactive experiences that promote music education outside of the traditional classroom environment.
For my initial concepts for my logo variations I wanted to remain kid friendly, while combining common musical symbols like notes and clefs, with symbols that could evoke the feeling of monsters like spikes, spots, and, spiked tails. I broke down the initial set of logo variations into three categories (iconic/symbolic, logotype/wordmark, and combination marks) to ensure I was trying a wide variety of options before refining. I also played with various styles of type to be sure I was using some combination of thin and bold type to help play on the two combined words for the brand name.
From the initial brand identity poster I extracted the design elements inlcuding typographic treatements, and graphic elements that would be used throughout the rest of the project.
Black & White photographs, musical notes and symbols with CMYK split overlays
Overlapping color elements, plenty of negative space, uses contrast in color, scale, and line weight
Brightly colored shapes with thin outline
Customized colored version of Helvetica Neue header type, bold headers, thin sans serif copy, no paragraph indent, left alignment
The first deliverable for RHYTHMonster I created is a mobile app that provides an interactive fun experience for children that teaches them how to compose music. There is a game element that walks students through the steps on how to start composing, a sharing feature where they can interact with other students and share music they have created, and information for the RHYTHMonster Day event. The goal of this deliverable was to be a fun experience for young students to engage with music education outside of the classroom that also acts as step by step instructions on how to compose music. By being able to quickly create, edit, and listen to the songs they are creating, students have fun creating their own music.
The second deliverable is an information kit that will go out to students and parents. For this deliverable I envisioned a different color coordinating throughout the design of the deliverable that corresponds to the grade level of the student that the kit is intended for. The kit contents I have further developed are for the Grade Four kit, and carry the CYMK Cyan color throughout the design as the primary color in the color palette. The kits themselves are mean to provide information to help students create their own music outside of the classroom without relying on the app to guide them. It also has an additional educational booklet for the parents/guardians to help encourage support for the child’s music and to provide additional resources for the parents on the benefits of music education.
The third deliverable for RHYTHMonster is an event. The goal of this deliverable is to create a fun engaging event evinronment for the target audience to come together to play music together in untraditional and technologically innovative and interactive ways. The main sections of the event that I have highlighted are the Interactive Music Wall and the Stage where participants will perform their own songs together or individually. The Interactive wall is a main feature of the event where participants can come together, touch the wall along the music staff, and create notes to an impromptu through their touch. I created the event to be engaging for the students in the target audience, informative for their parents, and to inspire collaboration between the students as they come together for the love of music.