Prem Krishnamurthy Yale College New Haven USA – I Used to Be a Design Student

AMERICAN

Prem Krishnamurthy

STUDENT YEARS

A PIECE OF SOUND ADVICE + A SINGLE WARNING TO A DESIGN STUDENT

Pay close attention to the things you like and why + Don’t be lazy in your work, thinking or actions in the world. Always seek to overperform

FAVOURITE FOOD THEN

Taco Bell bean burritos

YOUR MOST VALUED POSSESSION THEN

My 4×5 camera

YEAR OF PROJECT

1998

STUDENT PROJECT BRIEF

Create a series of movie posters for screenings of three films by a single filmmaker (who was assigned randomly)

COLLEGE

Yale College, New Haven (USA)

TUTOR(S)

Michael Rock

TECHNOLOGY

Illustrator, Nikon 35mm camera, Photoshop

TIME SPENT

2–3 weeks

TYPEFACE

Agenda

WHY DO YOU LIKE THIS PROJECT?

First, one major outcome of the project was that I received the assignment at random to watch at least three films by David Lynch. Having barely seen his work before, I took the opportunity to watch nearly all of his films before deciding which ones to make posters for. His films made a great impression on me then, in the way that they uniformly found pockets of deep strangeness and uncanny activity within the contours of everyday American life. So the brief itself proved to be a learning experience. Over the course of developing the poster concept, I came to the solution of actually creating three posters (in one case, a still image on a DVD), which I would insert into locations that possessed the weirdness intrinsic to Lynch’s films; the final step would be photographing them to create the finished posters. This approach seemed natural enough to me, as it combined my existing interest in photographing interiors with a self-referential approach to design. And it turned out, back then, to be the perfect method of making a set of graphic posters for these very particular films.

WHAT DO YOU DISLIKE ABOUT IT?

The typography and design of the posters within the posters.

OUTCOMES

This was the first time that I had tried to combine my interests in photography and design in a conscious and compact manner. I also realized that graphic design could become spatialized and inhabit real contexts; this interest in the particularities and specificity of spaces continued to grow over the years.

FEEDBACK

When these posters were shown in an undergraduate end-of-semester art show, a graduate design student remarked that they were the best pieces in the show, which was quite flattering.

PROJECT SIMILARITIES THEN AND NOW

Although I see the two projects as quite different in essential approach, I find them to have a common interest in situating graphic design within real spaces and also allowing design to spread in unusual ways. Both projects collapse representation and presentation in different ways. Also, for me, the earlier project presages my later deep engagement with exhibitions and physical spaces that nevertheless demonstrate a certain self-awareness.