Designing towards Multidimensionality

By Michelle Hays.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Design plays an instrumental function in bridging understanding of the contents and context through visual, verbal, and interactive methods or experiences. Revealing vital connections and the interrelations of aspects within a theory, art, and design serves as a means to understand the significance of designing visual communication design artifacts that exhibit wholeness and multidimensionality. The interplay among process, materials, form, senses, text, imagery, visualization, and theory comprise the basis for developing multidimensional forms.

It is paramount that designers see how a theory can become practical and embodied within communication design forms. This paper explores how the design of an artifact, a book, encourages audience participation beyond a typical reading experience. The design requires the audience to engage with the form and parts to synthesize the meaning and message of the piece. As a vehicle to pique curiosity, stimulate engagement, and interaction on multiple levels, it provides a reader with different ways of understanding through verbal, visual, tactile, and hands-on methods. Each level presents a different representation or way of revealing the content. This is a vital point, designing with multiple representations to create multidimensionality within one form.

Keywords: Multidimensionality, Process, Book Design, Theory, Design Practice, Layers, Multiple Intelligences, Learning Theory

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp.383-396. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.472MB).

Michelle Hays

Assistant Professor, Communication Design, Austin, Texas, USA

Over the last 15 years, Michelle Hays’ passion and enthusiasm for visual communication has manifested in many forms; designer, illustrator, educator, studio owner, and community volunteer. One aspect of her design practice includes designing and developing book projects that illuminate the subject matter by sparking the reader’s curiosity and encouraging their engagement. Michelle has taught design courses at Rhode Island School of Design, San Diego State University, Point Loma Nazarene University, and San Diego City College. She completed her graduate studies at Rhode Island School of Design, where she earned her M.F.A. in Graphic Design in 2004. Michelle served as a team member for three design studios in San Diego, and now owns Hays Design Studio in Austin. She is also a founding partner of MIRA Design Lab in Austin. Through these studios, she has contributed to local, national, and international projects. Michelle’s design work has appeared in publications including HOW, Print, and Graphic Design USA, and has been included in several galleries and museum libraries in Texas.


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