One of the most resounding quotes I heard from yesterday’s UN Youth Pre-Conference (website) was “Where does your joy meet the world’s greatest need?” The panelists were discussing ways for youth to make a difference, and how to get involved. Everyone always talks about donating money, but there are many other ways to get involved. For myself, I was a bit frustrated by the conference; they kept stressing how important youth were to accomplish the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, yet there were very few “youth” there. I appeared to be one of the younger people there (I’m 24), and the main reason I attended was b/c I designed a poster. I keep debating between thesis topics, I want to do something significant, something with meaning, either to me, or something that could bring meaning to others. I went to AIGA’s Young Blood Thesis presentations this past week, and while many were well-done, some presentations were so pretentious, and void of meaning. I was sitting there, and thinking, sure you’re smart, you did a lot of research, but your arrogant intellectual thesis topic had no effect on my life, and I truly don’t find it that interesting.
I was really inspired by these posters I saw by the UN, created by Gala Narezo, who is mentoring our Design Advocacy class. The series is called What Moves You?, and is a portrait series of people all over the world, talking about how the UN’s MDGs effect their lives. I love the concept of putting a face with to these issues. It creates a human element, and makes the MDGs personal and touching. I also like the way they look visually, especially the colors, B&W photography, and typography (all my favorite things wrapped into one project).
I wonder if I can do a similar series, but with my quote (Where does your joy meet the world’s greatest need?) and spotlight people and organizations who are doing just that. I even like the idea of making this a guerrilla campaign, making wheat paste posters, putting them everywhere, and creating a dialogue on this topic. I could use my postcard idea, and leave postcards around, asking people how could their joys or passions to make a difference, I could blog about it, create a twitter account documenting what I find. I feel like for thesis I have a million ideas running through my head, so hopefully this one sticks!