As the Kurukshetra banners and posters were being removed one by one after the end of the four day extravaganza, we got in touch with Krishna, Student Director – Design team, who gave us insights into what was new, how the 11th edition shaped up and what their takeaways are. Excerpts:
Can you tell us in brief about your work right from the time you were selected for this post?
Our work started immediately after we were appointed. Initially, the prime aim was to keep our online media platforms active. So we started posting posters for important days in Facebook and technology-oriented facts in Instagram. Once the events and workshops got confirmed, promotional activities pertaining to specifics started happening.
Design team deals closely with marketing in the online platforms. What are the points you kept in mind while designing a poster?
The first and foremost thing was to be minimalist. The main idea behind a poster or a picture is to attract attention of the viewer, and to reduce the textual content. So, unless and otherwise an idea could not be conveyed without words, we always stuck to minimalist design content with a maximum of 5 to 10 words. We mostly tried reducing the content that the Contents team gave us for any poster.
Why did you pick Design? What would have been your choice had you not been selected as a Design K!ore?
Design was always my favorite; it is an art rather than just a skill. However, if not for design, I would have preferred marketing, because both teams focus on the same goal ultimately – reaching out to the target audience. Design is only a medium towards marketing and transmitting ideas, and I was always inclined towards conveying the essence of a product or a service to the concerned people in an effective manner.
How much, in your opinion, did Design contribute to Kurukshetra? If marketing = reach, design = ?
The appearance. Whatever you saw on-days of Kurukshetra were the effects of various teams coming together but an overall presumption about K! was something that only the Design team could do.
How do you think did K!17 differ from K!16 from a designer’s perspective?
There was a separate team that did promotional videos for Kurukshetra, but there were certain ideas which were not feasible for both video and posters. We used GIFs to convey certain dynamic concepts for the first time. For example, the working mechanism of a project is not something that could be conveyed in a picture but a video would be exhausting. In these circumstances, GIFs played a great role, instead of a series of pictures, and we were happy to have exploited this arena. We also gave significant focus to Karnival and other non-technical events, unlike the previous editions.
How did you split work responsibilities among yourselves?
The three of us – myself, Grace Vino Kingsly and Murugesan – split our work distinctively. Grace took charge of designs related to workshops, guest lectures and Karnival, I took care of the events, and Murugesan spearheaded the banners, posters and standees which were to be designed for on-day promotions at the venues. But over a point of time, our responsibilities started overlapping and the three of us started doing everything, not restricting ourselves rigidly to our domains.
How much were the juniors involved in the team? How did you delegate work to them?
Juniors were the pillars of support without whom the design team would not have functioned effectively. They voluntarily took up a lot of tasks and owned up to the team, and that was really encouraging because it eased our workload. Moreover, I have heard from the previous year Kores that the design work is usually taxing and rigorous, but we did not feel it was that hard, thanks to the juniors.
How much are the chances that you would select a person who has little or no knowledge at all about the design softwares like Photoshop, Lightroom, etc.?
For the Design team of CTF, all you need is creativity – the ability to think of anything from a different perspective. The softwares are just media to convey the creative ideas, and we would be happy to train people who are interested in design.
There were a lot of firsts like Drone Race, K! Awards, etc. How much did the Design team help for the propaganda?
We promoted the signature events of Kurukshetra 2017 with special emphasis; we had something called “Highlights”, which covered all the significant events of each day of K!, and these were released before Kurukshetra to make students aware of the cluster of events. Apart from this, we also released event-specific posters. The continuation of this concept is the Highlights videos you would have seen after each day of K!. Moreover, we also lent our contribution to the video and promotions team.
Design team is often dubbed as the “Face of Kurukshetra”. What would you say to that?
Yes, agreed. As I stated earlier, design team gives the first fresh appearance to Kurukshetra, making the students and others aware about the festival. The first impression of any event or workshop is conveyed through the design team.
You started work long back, and have been working for almost six months now. Can you share with us one difficult experience and one funny moment?
Every deliverable given to us freaked us out initially, but we would sit together and discuss to come to a concrete conclusion. Particularly, the T-shirts for this year took a lot of iterations before the final design was confirmed. The three of us did work, apart from a few juniors, and eventually, we could arrive at a satisfactory design. But looking back, all these seem fun rather than work.
Funny moments? I cannot think of anything specific. But usually, our meets and discussions about the design ideas were always funny because, as I mentioned, juniors enjoyed working for Kurukshetra, and nothing seemed rigorous.