Browse Tag

Design

/

Black Interior Designer Spotlight: Bailey Li

Bailey Li is an interior designer and decorative artist based in Orange, New Jersey. She discovered her passion for decorating while working as a Real Estate agent.

Drawn to the architecture and character of historical homes, she began providing home staging services to homeowners that were looking to sell.

What inspired you to get into interior design?

In 2003, there was an influx of professionals from the New York City market seeking to put down roots in Northern New Jersey where I worked as a realtor.

A lot of the homes that  I listed were beautiful historical homes that simply required some refreshing and updating in order to get the asking price or above. During that time home decorating shows on HGTV  were super popular and as a result, the demand for home staging services was on the rise.

Black Interior Designer

I had a listing for 1.3 million dollars that needed some major sprucing up so I seized an opportunity. I  called in one of my best friends, Wanda Anderson who had an amazing sense of style. I told her that I needed her to stage the home for me; she came in, won my client over and was hired that day.

Wanda had never staged a home before so she insisted that I help her! She and I left the meeting that day and immediately formed our home staging business.

We had a check in our hands before we even had a name for our company. Staging was a means for clients to easily visualize potential properties as a place to call home and a way to speed up the sales process for me.

Little did I know that it would spark a passion for interior decoration / design and ultimately Guide me towards creating artistic hand painted/ textured walls and murals.

What inspires you?

I decided years ago to be fearless and to allow that fearlessness to fuel my work and inspire me creatively. I also wanted my work to not only be beautiful and functional but I committed myself to going the extra mile and pulling out the hidden parts of my clients that are truly begging to be expressed and translate them  into their spaces.

Black Interior Designer

The point of this was to ensure that their spaces transcend aesthetics and kick down fear based barriers that prevent many people (especially people of color) from  allowing their living spaces to reflect who they truly are.

I aim to always have my designs be rich in history and explosive in personality.  I am constantly inspired by my clients’ accomplishments, cultural backgrounds, travels  etc. and I would be remiss not to infuse aspects of their life journey into their homes.

My clients often tell me  that their spaces have become daily reminders to them of how amazing & brilliant They are and that waking up and coming home to their new environment encourages them everyday to not only live up to that but become more of what they are meant to be.

I challenge myself to do the same … with every project I make sure that I am not limiting myself to just the role of interior designer but instead I stretch myself into an Interior artist, a curator, a decorative strategist, a visual artist / muralist etc.  whatever I need to be in order to bring that vision to life, I become it. I am also mindful of the fact that I am not “here” to blend in and/ or be accepted.

Black Interior Designer

I am here to stand out, to make an impact on the lives of my clients and to pave the way for other young aspiring black interior designers. I truly aim to create dynamic, unique experiences that uplift the client, myself and all who see it.  The idea of that in and of itself inspires me.

What is your dream project? 

My dream project would be to be part of  a collective/ team  of dope and passionate artists, architects, creatives, Designers, professionals that together purchase and develop properties in order to create artist/ creative communities around the globe.

The structures will be historical structures that we’d renovate and / or retrofit to become affordable and conducive for artists and creatives to thrive in.

Since this is a “dream” project I imagine  that it will be fully funded by “angel”  investors whose only required return on investment would be that each artist pour back into the communities and remain a vital and ongoing part of the development of rising artists and creatives.

I believe emphatically in the idea that art in all its forms and genres has the ability to change the world so ultimately my dream project would be one  that would positively impact the lives of multiple people and that impact will be so great that it will improve the lives of many for years to come.

What advice do you have for someone who is clueless about how to design their space?

1. Stay true to you; infuse your experiences and journey into your space.

2. Choose a concept and stick to it.

3. Do not be afraid of color.

4. Hire a professional to help you bring it all together.

If a student wanted to enter the field, what advice would you give them?

Make sure it is a passion and if it is let it guide you to your purpose. There’s one thing to have a job/ career and there’s another to have a job/ career that your passionate about because through that passion you have the ability to discover your PURPOSE in this life.

Purpose is what ultimately leads to fulfillment. Once you’ve discovered your passion … Be fearless and make a mark! Your unique gift was not given to you in order for you to just blend in.

What do you envision for the future of design?

The future I envision is one with more black artists, collectors, galleries, furniture makers, interior designers / decorators entrepreneurs etc living in the dream that God has for them. I heard Oprah say those words “I’m Living in the dream that God has for me” and I concur;  I see that for the future of myself, design and everyone periodt!

 

-Tony O. Lawson

 

/

15 Black Architects Who Helped Build America

In the 1930’s, there were about 60 Black Americans were listed as registered architects. Many of their buildings have since been lost or radically changed. Although conditions have improved, many people feel that Black architects today still lack the recognition they deserve.

Here are some of America’s most notable Black architects who paved the way for today’s minority builders. Notice how the university first called Tuskegee Institute, whose School of Architecture is today named after one of these historic figures, played an important role in the careers of many Black American architects.

Black Architects

Robert Robinson Taylor (1868–1942)
black architects
Architect Robert Robinson Taylor on 2015 Black Heritage Stamp Series. U.S. Postal Service
 

Robert Robinson Taylor (born June 8, 1868, Wilmington, North Carolina) is widely considered the first academically trained and credentialed Black architect in America. Growing up in North Carolina, Taylor worked as a carpenter and foreman for his prosperous father, Henry Taylor, the son of a white slaveholder and a Black mother.

Wallace A. Rayfield (1873–1941)

Black architects
16th St. Baptist Church, Birmingham, Alabama. Carol M. Highsmith/Getty Images (cropped)
 

While Wallace Augustus Rayfield was a student at Columbia University, Booker T. Washington recruited him to head the Architectural and Mechanical Drawing Department at Tuskegee Institute. Rayfield worked alongside Robert Robinson Taylor in establishing Tuskegee as a training ground for future Black architects.

After a few years, Rayfield opened his own practice in Birmingham, Alabama, where he designed many homes and churches — most famously, the 16th Street Baptist Church in 1911. Rayfield was the second professionally-educated Black architect in the United States, right behind Taylor.

William Sidney Pittman (1875–1958)

William Sidney Pittman is thought to be the first Black architect to receive a federal contract — the Negro Building at the Jamestown Tercentennial Exposition in Virginia, 1907 — and the first Black architect to practice in the state of Texas.

Like other Black architects, Pittman was educated at Tuskegee University and then went on to study architecture at Drexel Institute in Philadelphia.

 

Moses McKissack III (1879–1952)

black architects
National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington, D.C. George Rose/Getty Images (cropped)
 

Moses McKissack III was the grandson of an African-born slave who became a master builder. Moses III joined his brother Calvin to form one of the earliest Black architectural firms in the United States — McKissack & McKissack in Nashville, Tennessee, 1905. Building on the family legacy, today’s McKissack and McKissack has worked on thousands of facilities, including managing the design and construction of the National Museum of African American History and Culture and being the architect of record for the MLK Memorial, both in Washington, D.C.

The McKissack family reminds us that architecture is not exclusively about design, but that all design architects depend on an architectural team. The Smithsonian’s Black history museum was designed in part by African-born Architect David Adjaye and was one of the last projects by American architect J. Max Bond. The McKissacks worked with everyone involved to get the project done.

 

Julian Abele (1881–1950)

Duke University Chapel, Durham, Norrh Carolina. Lance King/Getty Images (cropped)
 

Julian F. Abele was one of America’s most important architects, but he never signed his work and he was not publicly acknowledged in his lifetime. As the first Black graduate of architecture (1902) at the University of Pennsylvania, Abele spent his entire career at the Philadelphia firm of the Gilded Age architect Horace Trumbauer.

Abele worked for Trumbauer when they received a commission to expand the campus of a whites-only university in Durham, North Carolina. Although Abele’s original architectural drawings for Duke University have been described as works of art, it has been only since the 1980s that Abele’s efforts have been acknowledged at Duke. Today Abele is celebrated on campus.

Clarence W. (“Cap”) Wigington (1883–1967)

Cap Westley Wigington was the first registered Black architect in Minnesota and the first Black municipal architect in the United States. Born in Kansas, Wigington was raised in Omaha, where he also interned to develop his architecture skills.

At about age 30, he moved to St. Paul, Minnesota, took a civil service test, and was hired to be that city’s staff architect. He designed schools, fire stations, park structures, municipal buildings, and other important landmarks that still stand in St. Paul. The pavilion he designed for Harriet Island is now called the Wigington Pavilion.

 

Vertner Woodson Tandy (1885–1949)

black architects
Villa Lewaro, the Madam C. J. Walker Estate, Irvington, New York. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division
 

Born in Kentucky, Vertner Woodson Tandy was the first registered Black architect in New York State, the first Black architect to belong to the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and the first Black man to pass the military commissioning examination. Tandy designed landmark homes for some of the wealthiest residents of Harlem, including the 1918 Villa Lewaro for the self-made millionaire and cosmetics entrepreneur Madam C. J. Walker.

 

John E. Brent (1889–1962)

The first Black professional architect in Buffalo, New York was John Edmonston Brent. His father, Calvin Brent, was the son of a slave and became the first Black architect in Washington, D.C. where John was born. John Brent was educated at Tuskegee Institute and received his architecture degree from Drexel Institute in Philadelphia. Brent is well-known for designing Buffalo’s Michigan Avenue YMCA, a building that became a cultural center for the Black community in Buffalo.

 

Louis A. S. Bellinger (1891–1946)

 Born in South Carolina, Louis Arnett Stuart Bellinger earned a Bachelor of Science degree in 1914 from the historically Black Howard University in Washington, D.C. For more than a quarter of a century, Bellinger designed key buildings in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Unfortunately, only a handful of his buildings have survived, and all have been altered. His most important work was the Grand Lodge for the Knights of Pythias (1928), which became financially unsustainable after the Great Depression. In 1937 it was remodeled to become the New Granada Theatre.

Paul R. Williams (1894–1980)

California Residence c. 1927 by Architect Paul Williams. Karol Franks/Getty Images (cropped)
 

Paul Revere Williams became renowned for designing major buildings in Southern California, including the space-aged LAX Theme Building at the Los Angeles International Airport and over 2000 homes in the hills throughout Los Angeles. Many of the most beautiful residences in Hollywood were created by Paul Williams.

 

Albert Irvin Cassell (1895–1969)

Albert I. Cassell shaped many academic communities in the United States. He designed buildings for Howard University in Washington D.C., Morgan State University in Baltimore, and Virginia Union University in Richmond. Cassell also designed and built civic structures for the State of Maryland and the District of Columbia.

 

Norma Merrick Sklarek (1928–2012)

The Pacific Design Center, West Hollywood, California. Steve Proehl/Getty Images (cropped)
 

Norma Merrick Sklarek was the first Black woman to become a licensed architect in New York (1954) and California (1962). She was also the first Black woman honored by a Fellowship in AIA (1966 FAIA). Her many projects included working with and overseeing a design team headed by the Argentine-born César Pelli.

 

Robert T. Coles (1929– )

Robert Traynham Coles is noted for designing on a grand scale. His works include the Frank Reeves Municipal Center in Washington, D.C., the Ambulatory Care Project for Harlem Hospital, the Frank E. Merriweather Library, the Johnnie B. Wiley Sports Pavilion in Buffalo, and the Alumni Arena at the University of Buffalo. Founded in 1963, Coles’ firm ranks as one of the oldest in the Northeast owned by a Black American.

 

J. Max Bond, Jr. (1935–2009)

American Architect J. Max Bond. Anthony Barboza/Getty Images (cropped)
 

J. Max Bond, Jr. was born July 17, 1935 in Louisville, Kentucky and educated at Harvard, with a Bachelor’s degree in 1955 and a Master’s degree in 1958.

He studied in Paris at Le Corbusier studio on a 1958 Fulbright scholarship, and then for four years, Bond lived in Ghana, a country newly independent from Britain. The African nation was welcoming to young, Black talent — much more gracious than the cold-shoulders of American architectural firms in the early 1960s. Today, Bond may be best known for actualizing a public part of American history — the National September 11 Memorial Museum in New York City. Bond remains an inspiration to generations of minority architects.

Harvey Gantt (1943– )
Mayor of Charlotte Harvey Gantt, Democratic Candidate for the U.S. Senate in North Carolina, 1990. Cheryl Chenet/Getty Images

Harvey Bernard Gantt’s political future may have been metaphorically cemented in place on January 16, 1963, when a Federal Court sided with the young student architect and future Mayor of Charlotte. By court order, Gantt integrated Clemson University by becoming its first Black student. Since then, Gantt has inspired generations of minority students and politicians, including a young law student named Barack Obama.

 

Source: Thought Catalog


Subscribe and Follow SHOPPE BLACK on Facebook, Instagram &Twitter


 Get your SHOPPE BLACK Apparel!

/

Black Owned Home Decor Companies You Should Know

The home decor market is growing at a steady pace. This is partly due to the fact that nowadays, everyone from millennials and Generation X-ers, wants to personalize their home and office spaces.

Black owned Home Decor Companies that can offer quality and convenience to savvy consumers like these are in a position to succeed.

Black Owned Home Decor Companies

Tackussanu Senegal

black owned home decor

GOODEE

ụlọ

54kibo

Mismatch

Peace & Riot

Elan by Uri

Established 25

Global Attic

Nicole Crowder Upholstery

Hana Getachew 

Black Owned Home Decor

Malene Barnett

Black Owned Home Decor

Expedition Subsahara Black Owned Home Decor

Black Pepper Paperie Co. by Hadiya Williams

Black Owned Home Decor

Sheila Bridges Design, Inc 

Black Owned Home Decor

Rayo & Honey 

Reflektion Design 

Justina Blakeney’s 

Rochelle Porter 

Eva Sonaike

Don’t Sleep Interiors 

Black Owned Home Decor

BLK MKT Vintage 

Black Owned Home Decor

xNasozi 

Livvy& Neva 

Estelle Colored Glass

-Tony O. Lawson

If you would like to add your business to this list (or another) SUBMIT HERE.


Subscribe and Follow SHOPPE BLACK on Facebook, Instagram &Twitter


 Get your SHOPPE BLACK Apparel!

/

Ancient Modern: Designer Hadiya Williams on Her Work and Inspiration

In 2018, we’re launching a new section: Aesthetics + Design. Our love of architecture, the arts and timeless design is married to our commitment to supporting the brilliant creatives that produce the work that adds value and beauty to our lives. Featuring architects, curators, artists, creators and makers, we’re excited to celebrate those most visually talented amongst us. Additionally, we’ll be sharing inspiration from homes and spaces that inspire.

For our inaugural feature, we sat down with Washington, D.C. based designer, Hadiya Williams, whose design has left in indelible mark on our lives, literally and figuratively. She was the mastermind behind our gorgeous wedding invitations for the #BlackestWeddingEver bka the ORIGINAL Jolloff and Jambalaya. (Believe it or not, some people actually stole our hashtag. Can you imagine?) But I digress.  She also recently completed a few larger scale projects in our Philadelphia home that was featured on HGTV’s Sneak Peek with AphroChic.

Check out what Hadiya had to say about her own personal aesthetic and process and look forward to more gorgeous inspiration to come.

Shantrelle P. Lewis

SB: Where are you from and how did you start working in design?

HW: I was born and raised in Washington, DC. I started designing while I was attending Bowie State University. I decided to take some computer graphics classes for an elective. I fell in love with the class and continued to teach myself how to use the design software. I eventually received by BFA in Graphic Design from Columbia College in Chicago.

SB: HBCU LOVE! And shout out to Columbia College. The Museum of Contemporary Photography(MoCP), on Columbia’s campus where Dandy Lion was on view in 2014, was one of the best things that ever happened to my career. Oh wait, you actually came to Chicago and saw the show there.

HW: I did! It was great to be back in the city. And of course, the exhibit was all of the things.

SB: Please describe what you do. How you self identify? As an artist? Designer? Creator?

HW: I would call myself all of the above. Depends on what I’m discussing or referring to. Ultimately, I am an artist. I know for a fact that what I do is art. I work intuitively most of the time. My work evokes emotion and very rooted in spirituality. Always has been.

SB: What inspired you to launch your 100 days of Black and white?

HW: I follow designer and book artist @eisroughdraft on IG. She shared a creative challenge, #The100DayProject with Elle Luna & The Great Discontent and I decided to do it. I was in a really tough space, creatively, at the time and thought the challenge would be a good way to help me focus and explore what I could do within that space. I had no idea how dramatic that release would be. I highly recommend a challenge like this where you do something for at least 21 days.

SB: What gave you gumption to start Black Pepper Paperie?

HW: #theblackestweddingever was the tipping point for me actually starting my business.  I did the invitation for this dope ass wedding which we all knew would be out of this world.

No one could have know just how amazing that experience would be. I came back from New Orleans in a completely different state of mind.

Before I left I was focused on working at my nonprofit gig and building up my position there. But I got back home and I knew I had to do work that I loved and that was exciting.

I began to plant the seeds for my stationery/event design business. Hence the “paperie” part of my name. I was pumped about that but there was still a part of it that I hadn’t figured out. I’m still learning and figuring out where this is going but it’s going definitely in the right direction.

SB: What are the most challenging and the most rewarding parts of owning your own business?

HW: The most challenging part about my business, so far is the learning. I have spent my career learning technical skills and design and being very focused with in the graphic design world.

Being an entrepreneur requires you to know so much more outside of art and design. That part is definitely challenging for me as a creative person. Like many artists, I just want to make shit.

The rewarding part, however, is the learning. Lol. Everyday I am faced with a new challenge. Creative and otherwise.

SB: Where do you pull inspiration? Who or what are your muses?

HW:  Black women. I am surrounded by an array of amazing, talented, dynamic women who guide me. They’re my muses. I’m also inspired by so many things around me. I have tons of design books, I go to vintage shops, thrift stores, outdoor markets, Pinterest.

I love West African art and design. It has always influenced my design thinking and the way I see.

SB: Tell me about your favorite personal/professional project?

HW: Ha! So, recently I painted designs on two walls in this home in Philly. Of course this is your home. That was something I hadn’t explored before and almost told myself that I wasn’t capable of. I consider it a favorite because it taught me that I have so much more work to do. And it reminded me that my work is spiritual.

I was inspired by the home itself and the history of the historically Black neighborhood, you and Tony’s roots in West African culture, and the open-minded spirit and boldness that you have.

Your curatorial work is bold and is all about taking risks. No one really thinks of home decor as risk-taking but it is the place where we are our most vulnerable and most comfortable. It says so much about who we are or at least it should. When people see our living space, if we are fortunate, it should tell them what we value most.

SB: Is there such a thing as a Black or African aesthetic?

HW: I think there is a thing that comes from Blackness that is innate, intuitive, not something that can be counted and measured. You know it when you see it and you actually feel the aesthetic, energetically.

I don’t think there is one specific aesthetic that is Black or African. I believe that we have a common aesthetic thread throughout the Diaspora.

The way we create music, dance, paint, and experience art in many forms, is connected. The evolved version of Black Americans is still connected to the Continent.

The same for the Caribbean. We all belong to each other. We consistently birth new art forms everyday. We are the cultural creators of the world.

SB: How would you describe your own personal aesthetic?

HW: Currently, my work is an amalgamation of West African cultural art, Black American cultural art and design, and early 20th century, western, abstract art and design that is essentially an appropriation or reinterpretation of West African art forms.

People who see my work tend to know or think they know it’s mine. So clearly I have an aesthetic, I have not found the words to describe it yet.

SB: What’s on your coffee table?

HW: A handmade vase from a fellow ceramics classmate, a book of matches, candle, my “genie bottle,” Dandy Lion by Shantrelle P. Lewis, Black Panther by Emory Douglas, Remix by AphroChic, The House Book, a Fire!! reprint, Black Society by Gerri Major, Taschen Publishing’s Logo Modernism.

SB: These days I’m becoming more and more selective about the kind of images I want to see in my social media fees. Who should we be following on IG? 

@BLKMKTVintage, @nicolecrowder, @justinablakeney, @andreapippins @ShoppeBlack, @nayyirahwaheed, @xnasozi, @tactilematter, @Afrominimalist @WalkieChatter, @ProfessionalBlackGirl and @Nachesnow. There are more but these are the first to come to mind.

SB: Lastly, what are tools that you can’t live without?

HW: My laptop.My cell phone (camera). #2 HB Pencils.

You can follow Hadiya on IG at @hadiyawilliams and @blackpepperpaperieco or visit blackpepperpaperie.com to inquire about projects, to purchase items and for more information.

/

Envisioning Blackness In American Graphic Design: Preface

Envisioning Blackness in American Graphic Design is an essay written by Maurice Woods. The goal was to identify, from Black culture, an aesthetic in design that is easily recognized as arising from the uniqueness of the Black experience. The pretense is in support of increasing the value of diversity in design.

Envisioning Blackness in American Graphic Design: Preface

Defining a Black aesthetic in graphic design is a challenging task for anyone wishing to see it evolved and used. Development relies on many factors that exist outside the scope of literal interpretation (Kente cloth, red, black and green, African masks, etc.) and more towards the values of social, political, and economic life.

AiighXAxGLlyyXwFhb82smQB9tkSe7Elap7bO3w2TmY

I believe for there to be a Black aesthetic in graphic design, there must be a collective consciousness of Black identity in America as well as healthy individual identities.

Currently, many Black people do not put emphasis on the role design can play in advancing and extending the level of business practice or self image–Black folk have to become participants productively engaged in upholding Black identity in the face of American culture.

Secondly, Blacks must be able to identify some of the historical contributions of Blacks in art. Understanding the viewpoints associated with Black culture are a start; however, it takes much more than this. Establishing a Black presence in design is inseparable from knowing Black history and culture.

DJ_WoodsM_Miles_640-1

Within this essay lie grounded principles of the Black aesthetic that can be used to describe an aesthetic in graphic design that is entirely unique and overwhelmingly progressive.

Just as entertainers have deployed creative new forms of expression within their prospective fields, so does the Black designer, should he or she take the initiative to design with the responsibility of advancing the images of Black existence.

This does not mean ignoring one’s duty to communicate objectively the goals of clients, but to engage in work that presents issues that enlighten the majority.

Personally, I chose to write about the Black aesthetic in graphic design because I was frustrated going to book stores only to read or buy books that celebrate the work of others. While I found the aesthetics of others interesting, I was always interested in what aesthetic collectively upholds notions of Blackness.

As a practitioner within the discipline of graphic design, I have always embraced my heritage and wanted to use my talents for empowering others. Graphic design has giving me the vehicle to communicate to a wide range of audiences and provide messages that support, not exploit Black people.

Black aesthetics in graphic design provides a critical language in describing Black thoughts and experiences that sometimes cannot be effectively communicated except through graphic representation. Overall, the purpose of a defined aesthetic to me would be to create work, as Edmund B.

Gather said, that “…introduces a body of material to a race-conscious public in order to force the public to recognize its existence and its quality.”  For me, using a deployable Black aesthetic means drawing from my own individualistic perspectives to produce work that contributes to the progression of racial pride for black throughout the world.

– Contributed by Maurice Woods

maurice-1

Maurice Woods is the Executive Director/Founder of the Inneract Project (IP). He previously worked as a designer at the world’s largest independent design consultancy, Pentagram Design. He designed extensive identity, retail, exhibit and interactive programs for clients such as Nike, Greyhound, Symantec, Priceline.com, and Google. He currently works as a Experience Design lead at Yahoo.

 

We hope you enjoyed this Essay’s preface. The introduction and other chapters are on the way!

/

Introducing INNERACT PROJECT: Educating the Next Generation of Design Gurus

Everyone knows there is a huge diversity gap in design and tech fields. What is important to note is that there is very little work being done with underserved youth at a young age to help prepare them and to combat this disparity.

Therefore, exposure at a young age is essential. My goal with Inneract Project is to provide minority parents from underserved communities with valuable opportunities for their kids to enter design fields.

10314548_10152135114198262_8797767453158308380_nI am dedicated to making sure kids (particularly underserved minority youth) get the best chance in life to be successful. This is REALLY important to me.

ip_ads_collectionI was raised in Richmond, California, where, like most young people in urban communities across the nation, I was primarily exposed to sports and music. I ran into design via a scholarship to play college ball but not every kid in the community will get this opportunity.

While I was in college, I randomly picked design as a major. This was because I liked to draw when I was a kid. Through this random act, I was exposed to a new world. I think every kid in the community deserves to know about design.

There are a TON of career options for youth in these fields. I work in the Bay Area where design is an important skill in the tech industry. Design careers are in demand, and as a result, pay well.

10154153_10152085377743262_1296365765_n

Creative fields are projected to be one of the most promising new opportunities for employees over the next 7 years. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.)

Design in Context

In today’s world, design is all around us – logos, architecture, furniture, packaging, websites, technology, fashion, and endless other places. Even so, few people really understand what design is.

Design “process” encourages creativity and innovation, which drives our global marketplace. It takes into account; function, human values, social conditions and aesthetics. It makes our lives efficient, informed, sustainable, and more productive.

It is deeply embedded into our culture and is used to move our nation forward. Yet, it is a missing piece in K-12 education and most underserved communities have little knowledge of its existence.

303777_10150274834118262_6022450_n

Inneract Project is trying to change this. We know from studies that academic achievement by 8th grade is one of the largest predictors of college readiness.

We want to start working with young minority students at an early age, to give them the proper exposure, education and preparation to enter fields in design.photoIn 2015, only 6% of African American graduates received Art/Design bachelor’s degrees from U.S. degree granting institutions. (Higher Education Arts Data Services (HEADS)

As our nation focuses more on innovation, we must educate our youth on what design can offer and develop their problem-solving skills to prepare them for jobs that meet the needs of our changing world.

We must also educate parents and the broader community so they can support this new generation of design thinkers. We believe parents are the key and invite them to not only sign their kids up for our classes and workshops but pass the word around, be involved, and help us build a network of parents dedicated to improving the quality of life and future for our young people.

1098153_10152118967653262_4630090921166282862_nWe are working on an expansion model, testing Inneract Project programs in other cities as well as entrepreneurship for youth. We are empowering them through design and providing opportunities for them to create products that they believe the world needs.

04_Inneract_GoofingOff

 

About Maurice Woods:

mo_photo2_blog

Maurice Woods is the Executive Director/Founder of the Inneract Project (IP). Maurice graduated from the University of Washington with a BFA and MFA in Visual Communication Design. He played basketball as an undergraduate and professionally worldwide for 7 years. Since graduating, he has taught undergraduate and graduate level courses at multiple colleges, lectured nationally and internationally and contributed to various media outlets including the Wall Street Journal.

12208688_10153301147923262_8938536858038104236_n

Maurice served as Co-Chair of Education for the AIGA San Francisco and nationally as a Board of Advisor for the Diversity Archive Collection Exhibition. Currently he sits on the board for Design Ignites Change. Professionally, Maurice worked as a designer at the world’s largest independent design consultancy, Pentagram Design. He designed extensive identity, retail, exhibit and interactive programs for clients such as Nike, Greyhound, Symantec, Priceline.com, and Google. He has won multiple design awards, featured in publications and is also a Jefferson Award winner. He currently works as a Experience Design lead at Yahoo.

If you’re looking for a Retail Design Agency to help you with the launch of a product or with a company campaign, consider checking out Mynt.

1621909_10151996715858262_1303195386_n

For specific questions or to get involved to help our mission, email us at info@inneractproject.org. We are currently looking for fundraising board members.

 

Contact Inneract Project on Social media:

website: inneractproject.org

facebook: inneractproject

twitter: @InneractProject

– By Guest Contributor: Maurice Woods