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Looking Past the Obvious

Visual Design

I don’t know about you, but seeing our work up on a big screen is really gratifying to me. Presenting to large audiences naturally requires the use of oversized graphics for ideal legibility and consumption, so I suppose it’s no surprise that the sheer size and scale of the visuals make the creative more impressive. Under normal circumstances, our work in digital is generally consumed on much smaller devices. A desktop monitor or laptop screen – let alone a mobile device – is no match for a keynote presentation. Seeing our design up on the big screen gives it something extra, a grandiose feeling that I don’t normally experience when seeing it on the usual devices.

In a keynote presentation, a speaker presents an engaging monologue, adding an illustrative voiceover to the visuals that tells the story of the challenges we’re solving for. It’s really enlightening to experience our own work from this perspective. Hearing the narrative played back from an accomplished storyteller paints a picture of what, why, and how the design makes an impact for organizations, not to mention the positive effects it could have on the lives of the workers themselves.

Mimi Brooks, CEO of LDS, presenting the Frontline Worker case study at the 2017 The Conference Board Innovation Master Class event.

So maybe it’s more than just seeing it in such a large format. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s being presented, in this case, by my CEO, Mimi Brooks… on this grand stage… to an audience of senior executives and thought leaders representing some of the top companies in our industry today. It’s possible that this feeling of delight isn’t a result of the large screen at all, but because of a sense of accomplishment, that we’ve done something great. Our creation is center stage and is the star of the show (ehem… along with Mimi of course). It has transformed from a mere concept to a thing of value and purpose. A work of art that’s now recognized as being worthy of the spotlight by the very audience it was designed for. As if, all at once, the big screen validates the effort that went into the design, legitimizes its value to the world, and invites a room full of experts to appreciate it. And just like that, poof! Our design suddenly has meaning.

It’s indeed a memorable point in the career of a designer, or any other professional for that matter: The moment you begin to understand the impact one’s efforts can have in people’s lives, and the feeling that you’ve made a positive mark on society.

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