After more than a year of work, the Graphic Lab for teens is almost ready. Research, consultation, acquisition, prototyping, exploration… a lot of preparatory work has been done. It is now time to gather it all together and activate the space.
On March 7 and April 12, members of the Graphic Research Unit (GRU) will travel to the Sunshine Coast to help re-envision and activate the Graphic Lab at Gibsons YMCA Youth Centre. Members of the GRU will deploy their design skills to help draw traffic to the youth centre and demonstrate to youth some of the great possibilities and potential held within the space. During the site visits, the GRU Master of Design students will also hold small workshops, collaborating with youth around their specific areas of design research. What better way to showcase the potential of a Graphic Lab than to give the space a little design makeover, and then put it all to use?
Many lessons can be learned from adapting design resources to the specific needs and skill sets of teenagers. Those lessons can be applied to make mainstream design resources more accessible, safer, easier to understand, less expensive, and more impactful. By engaging with teenagers (our edge case), we learn how to make design practices more accessible and empowering for everyone.
Many thanks to the YMCA of the Greater Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast Regional District and the Gibsons Area Community Centre without whom this collaboration would not have been possible. Many thanks also to the Master of Design student members of the Graphic Research Unit: Medha Mistry, Devansh Parikh and Laura Caceres Rivero. This project is made possible by a grant from the President’s Office at Emily Carr University of Art + Design.