This project, a 40 page illustrated book, was completed for my Honors Thesis in the Geography Department at Macalester College, 2020.
The challenges of the Anthropocene call upon all of us as creatives, designers, and scholars to design new methods of survival. I seek to explore how the process of design, broadly conceived, can solve vital problems, improve human and non-human lives, and even benefit the planet we share.
This work, presented as an illustrated manifesto, draws upon literature in the study of the Anthropocene, biomimicry, and design thinking in order to create a set of design rules, which I call mindful design. Heavily influenced by geographic context, mindful design is adaptable to feedback and prioritizes the overall health of the Earth and its inhabitants. Biomimicry is a more recent term for the long-established practice that draws inspiration from the natural world in order to guide human-made design.
My work explores both the potential and the limitations of the field as a tool for problem-solving design in the Anthropocene. I put these design rules into practice in a visual book, combining writing with photographs, diagrams, and comic-style illustrations to accessibly communicate my ideas to a broader audience.
Mindful design is an ever-important tool that now holds even more weight in moving us closer to, or further from, the predicted futures of climate catastrophe in the Anthropocene.