with Will Howell
What can black aesthetics teach you about influence and inspiration?
Will Howell is a Communication Design student at Parsons School of
Design. For thesis, Will devoted his thesis project to explore more
of his ident-
ity. Will is an African-American designer. A lot of his
research centers on black aesthetics in graphic design. In his first experiment,
he curated a visual zine of some of the major contributing characters who make
up the black design aesthetic over the past 100 years. For his second experim-
ent, he wanted to move from found material to original material. Will wanted
to explore what
his aesthetic is like as a black designer. The final form will
be a virtual exhibition that show-
cases the different garments designed. In
this ep, I learned that the black aesthetic influences a lot of us in many
different ways. Will also taught me a lot about what it means to try new
to be authentic in what I do.
Transcript with visuals:
Will Howell: So in my book that I tried to make, I wanted to
include just a wide range and variety of different examples that cross
medium. So it would be fashion designers of black musicians, black painters,
photographers, things of that sort.
Will Howell: That's how I understood the zeitgeist. So I think it has
a lot to do with music, our culture, politics. It's just like, what's going
on right now. I wanted to use
all that as reference to start my designing.
Will Howell: So it's a capsule of t-shirts, outerwear, pants, a few
accessories, really basic, more geared toward athleisure. Given we are still
in a pandemic, part of my project is really about finding different way to
present. Like a virtual collection.