the academy projecT


Brief description:


The Academy project is an independent study which I created through Drexel University in the Fall of 2016. I approached the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia in hopes to create a partnership with a focus on design work I've created based off of the fossils in their collections. The work was received enthusiastically and a partnership was formed. I was given access to the Academy's private collections to document as I wished. The documentation can be viewed below. The pictures were taken with Canon Rebel T6 50mm lens, and the pictures were then manipulated in photoshop and adobe illustrator to create symmetrical patterns. These patterns are displayed below. The patterns were then applied to merchandise to be sold in the gift shop.

documentation: The academy of natural sciences

Private collections

Synopsis for the Academy of Natural Sciences Design Project

 Throughout the entirety of winter term, I have been working on my independent study, which is a collaborative project between the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University and I. I made patterns and designs based off of the academy's private collections by contacting the collection directors and then taking photographs of the collection and manipulating the photographs in programs such as; photoshop and adobe illustrator. I used multiple methods for the production of patterns such as the kaleidoscope method. For this process, I would compile multiple cutouts of shells that I photographed into a “pile”. I would then select a certain area of the pile and cut out a square and/or rectangle which would then be duplicated and reflected multiple times in order to create a certain pattern. There were also multiple patterns created by drawing and painting on paper. It was decided that the superior pattern making method was through computer programs.

    Sarah and I would coordinate and meet once a week and discuss/critique my work and plan for the next steps in the project. I produced approximately 55 patterns based off the photographs I collected over the course of the project. I put all of the patterns into a PowerPoint and presented to the Academy to show the work I had been doing. After meeting with the marketing director, graphic designer, education director, and Sarah Steinwachs, it was decided that the patterns were acceptable to apply to products. These products included and are not limited to; mugs, bookmarks, umbrellas, water bottles, stationery, gift bags, tire bags, magnets, pens, journals, planners, prints, and phone cases. After this meeting, it was decided that we could present a PowerPoint to Barnes and Noble with the patterns placed on these products. I made this PowerPoint and it was received by the marketing director of the academy. That is the current stage that the project has concluded to for the term, although, there will be a continued connection between the Academy and I for the creation of these patterns.

   In conclusion, I learned a multitude of skills for the marketing of design and gained experience and amazing insight on pattern making, photoshop/illustrator. Overall it was a successful project and independent study.