Veterans Day | Senior Capstone Exhibition, Part 2

Six months ago, I had the opportunity to exhibit my senior capstone art show at Duke. I spent my final semester in the capstone class with everything culminating around this final project/exhibition... and I've been waiting for an opportune time to reveal my project on this blog. (I've already posted "Senior Capstone Exhibition, Part 1," which highlights many of my classmates projects.)

With today being Veterans Day, I decided it was a good time to showcase my final project of my undergraduate career. A lot of work went into this exhibition; it was a perfect blend of my love for design, typography, and the United States military.

Throughout the past four years, I have gained insight into the military world that many others simply never get. I've heard stories that many others will never have the chance to hear... because while the men and women of the United States military have fought to defend our freedom of speech, they do not always have that same freedom. It's true. The Uniform Code of Military Justice has articles that prevent members of the military from expressing their opinions if they present any elected government officials or the military as a whole in a negative light. Which leads me to...

My Project: "A Different Type of War"

For my project, I interviewed numerous active duty service members and created a series of typography posters from my conversations with them. The quotes are completely anonymous to protect those interviewed. The purpose of this project was not to be pro/anti-military or pro/anti-war. It was more or less like a PostSecret for military members: providing a public voice for those who are not always free to express their opinions, whatever they may be. As you can see from the quotes selected for the exhibition, there are a wide variety of opinions among those who serve. They all deserve to be heard, and it was an honor to share these for my exhibition.

The typography posters were designed to be ironically reminiscent of vintage recruiting posters, and were juxtaposed throughout the exhibition with black and white photographs of an anonymous serviceman that could be any member of the military.

My family was able to come up for the exhibition opening:

my dad

my mom (L) and my professor/visual arts advisor (R)

...and Zach was finally able to see the exhibit during my graduation weekend senior reception, although he had seen the project in every stage of production since I wanted to make sure it honored the voices and opinions of all those who took place in making the project come to life.
Note: To keep with the anonymous portion of the project & avoid a conflict of interests, I didn't interview Zach. I know what he thinks about all of this, anyway :)

This Veterans Day, I hope to provide a little bit more insight into the lives of the veterans of our nation - insight that I've been blessed to gain over the past four years. These men and women come from a variety of backgrounds with differing beliefs. They don't have the same political views. They don't have the same opinions concerning the war. Regardless, they do whatever is asked of them. They place their love of country and duty to serve above all else, even when it means not having the freedom to express their own opinions... and today, we honor them.