MFA students make impact in international competitions

Ipek Koprululu ’24

A redesign of the American Library Association's popular "READ" campaign earned Ipek Koprululu ’24 MFA (visual communication design) inclusion in STA 100, which annually celebrates 100 examples of typographic excellence.

Inspired by the different ways people visually interpret text they read, Ipek Koprululu ’24 MFA (visual communication design) put a contemporary spin on the American Library Association’s popular “READ” campaign for a class project.

Koprululu revisited the original posters—launched in the 1980s to promote the importance of reading—with the intent of highlighting the entertaining and mysterious elements of reading. The target audience for the rebrand was adults.

“Reading is an individual experience because each reader imagines the text differently,” Koprululu’s project description reads. “However, when the reader tries to picture the images they imagined in a concrete form, they will find that the images are mostly abstract and incomplete. The content of this campaign was designed to create curiosity by emphasizing this diversity and abstraction.”

Koprululu’s design and typographic work earned her international recognition. She was among an exclusive list of professional designers selected in the Society of Typographic Arts (STA) 100 competition, which annually celebrates 100 examples of typographic excellence produced around the globe.

Koprululu created a logo and six posters for her “READ” rebrand while offering new ways to share the campaign’s message (with motion pieces for social media and merchandising designs). 

The visuals and typography in each poster reflect a specific novel, including The Great Gatsby, The Picture of Dorian Gray and Wuthering Heights. Book forms were incorporated into the “READ” logo, designed with a companion slogan, “Pick a Book & Set Yourself Forever Free.”

The campaign was completed in Assistant Professor Anne Jordan’s Design Systems class.

“To emphasize the sense of wonder that readers experience, I used a visual approach comprising abstract, ambiguous shapes and collages,” Koprululu said in her project description. “I blended them with dynamic typography to give engaging life to the text. The use of physical materials references the depth of feeling in a story. As a whole, this campaign celebrates the joy and wonder of reading and fulfills the mission of encouraging adults to read.”

Koprululu’s STA 100 honors is the latest in a recent line of international honors garnered by RIT visual communication design MFA students. Earlier this year, six students from the program had a total of 15 projects recognized in various categories in the Graphis New Talent Awards, a showcase of creative excellence around the world.

The honored students were: 

  • Phoebe Huey — Honorable Mention, Type Fonts A-Z
  • Ipek Koprululu — Silver, Books; Honorable Mention, Brochures
  • Isabelle Qiu — Silver, Website Design; Silver, Interactive; Honorable Mention, Interaction Design (for four projects); Honorable Mention, Brochures; Honorable Mention, Website Design (for two projects)
  • Eshaan Sojatia — Silver, Poster
  • Yi Sun — Honorable Mention, Packaging
  • Zhuoran Yang — Honorable Mention, Logo

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