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Home Town Folk

 

MFA 2015
Art Direction: Joe Scorsone
Photography: Elena Dimi

Inspired by my own memories growing up there, Home Town Folk is a guide to Oley Valley, Pennsylvania, through its material culture. A deeply researched collection of articles, photos, and stories pertaining to some of the town’s most iconic institutions compares the preserved history of Oley alongside more recent memories. Divided into three sections, Origin & Superstition, Foodstuff & Drink, and Shopping & Recreation, each spread layers reinterpreted colorful artifacts of the town with a published article regarding each icon. The result is a colorful, exploratory depiction of my home town scattered with different voices.

All of the content was self-gathered and organized through many extended visits to the area. Personal materials were supplemented by texts from historic publications, newspapers, and online articles.

A hand-stitched open spine highlights the collection of colorful materials held inside the book.

Divided into three sections, Origin & Superstition, Foodstuff & Drink, and Shopping & Recreation, each section begins with a table of contents and personal perspective. A  clean introduction to each chapter has a table of contents and creates a visual break from the density of ephemera that follows.

I organized a framework for the book that was flexible enough to allow for very visually diverse narratives. The structure isolates every spread within each chapter as a self-containing story. The spread shown below describes the complicated transformation of the Oley Legion to the Valley’s first fast-food chain. It’s described through photos, a reimagined advertisement, and a local news article.

Although my current home is Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, I’ve had the pleasure of working with people locally and internationally, including Landor Associates in Hamburg, Germany, and House9 Design, in Montreal, Canada.

As a visual designer, I’m concerned with impacting markets and social groups in a positive way through thoughtful research and cultural perspective. My academic work and educational background reflects my appreciation for perspective. As a student, I studied visual anthropology and German while actively working towards a degree in Graphic Design at the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, USA.

My personal interests in the field involve the relationship between people and materials produced for them, exploring object culture through reinterpreting artifacts. I’m drawn to the differences between commercial goods and the meaning embodied in their forms, designing things typically discarded and reimagining those materials when they aren’t.

Freelance Inquiries

Hey there! Send me an email at laura.a.sutphen@gmail.com.

Services

branding, illustration, print design, website design, research, copywriting

Freelance Inquiries

Hey there! Send me an email at laura.a.sutphen@gmail.com.

Services

branding, illustration, print design, website design, research, copywriting