Students explore careers in visit to Chase Design Skaneateles High School art students were given an inside look at Chase Design during a career exploration field trip. Students in Jessica Sawchuk's graphic design and advanced art classes as well as some independent study students learned about the history of the Chase Design, what they do, and how the creative process works.
Doug Whitehouse told the students that a designer must first find out what the problem is -- and then solve it. He said it is important to have self-confidence and to present ideas with pride.
"Ultimately you must do your own best work, and choose what to present." He said.
"We call our team members problem solvers," he said. "We don't look for people who are super specialized; we want people who have many different life experiences." One of their designers used to be a lawyer, another a fine artist, and another worked for National Geographic. "There are lots of opportunities in the arts" he said, "a lot of these opportunities are just well kept secrets".
Students had one-on-one time with many different kinds of designers including strategy and storyboarding, graphics, 3d, and multi-media.
"I never realized how many jobs are related to art," Brady Iles said. "Chase Design is such a cool and interactive company and I love how everyone here is so different and contributes something new to each idea."
Charlotte Gardner noted how “the entire company truly works together. A project isn't accomplished by one person- they are finished by multiple people."
Ali Grant said “I enjoyed hearing about everyone's backgrounds and seeing how they got to where they are now."
"It was great to go into the building and speak to the different designers about their role within the company,” said Kao Howard. " It was amazing to see their work and upcoming projects."
Anna Neuenschwander said that she was very intrigued by the drafting and sketching that proceeds any actual decisive creation. “Putting all of the consideration into every single aspect of the design is admirable. I have a new appreciation for store organization and design. This can apply to my interest in medical illustration in that I now an understand what I might be doing as a designer."
"I learned how much visuals impact the average person's mind and persuade them to buy something," Skyler VanLeer said. It’s amazing how in a short amount of time so many ideas can be created that are actually successful.l"
Chris Smith really loved his experience with virtual reality. "It allowed me to experience art in a new and interesting way."
Teacher Jessica Sawchuk said the students met with Whitehouse again after spending time with designers. “He talked about what inspires him personally as an artist. He showed us the imagery, photos, and architecture that he tries to capture every day – which he will ultimately draw from to create,” she said.
“Empathy was truly the theme of the day,” said Sawchuk. “In order to create something for someone else, you must understand who you are designing for, why you are designing it, and what makes people interested, bored, and/or engaged.”
Whitehouse stressed that it is important to be open and flexible in design (as in many other areas). "You can't hold onto these ideas, because they are going to end up changing."