Winning the Internet

Face It: Design to Hack Peoples’ Minds

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Candice Dayoan

Candice Dayoan

As we get ready for Netroots Nation 2015, we’re taking a closer look at some of the convention’s most exciting training sessions. We’re interviewing the trainers and taking you inside some of online activism’s most popular and elusive topics.

Today we’re interviewing Candice Dayoan of 50+1 Strategies, who’ll be leading Face It: Design to Hack Peoples’ Minds.

NN15 Training Session

Face It: Design to Hack Peoples’ Minds
Ever wonder why certain ads, mailers and other creative designs attract you more than others? It’s a question that designers ask themselves every day. Learn about how artists have been focusing on human faces since the dawn of “political ads,” why it works and how you can use this to improve your own design. Delve into the psychology of how humans recognize visual information and learn how to utilize the way we react with our world to attract more people to your message. This training will cover the basics of photo-based design and help you improve the visuals of your cause, campaign or business.


Q: Tell us about yourself and your experience with design.

A: I’ve always been a computer geek, starting off in programming and eventually found my true calling in the arts. While earning my digital animation degree, I also became very involved in student advocacy. After earning my digital animation degree, I spent a few years working in computer animation and television and film special effects. In 2009, I used these combined experiences as a Field Organizer and Deputy New Media Director for Organizing for America – California, where I began designing local volunteer materials. I’ve since been fortunate enough to work on more than 40 campaigns as Creative Director at 50+1 Strategies, where I’ve created 20+ original campaign logos and 100+ pieces of literature and mailers. I love communicating important information in interestingly visual ways.


Q: In your opinion, what is the most common mistake that people make when designing with photos?

A: I think that the biggest mistake happens in the planning stages. Photography is expensive, so you have to put a lot of thought into the planning phase to make sure your sessions yield the best results. Make sure you get a great photographer with a good eye, preferably someone who has experience taking photos to be used in print design. Thinking that the photoshoot is separate from the design process is a huge mistake.


Q: What are the two most important principles to keep in mind when designing ads, mailers and other kinds of creative?

A: 1) Design with your target person in mind; you only have a moment to capture and keep their attention. 2) You probably have too much copy. Cut it. And then cut it more.


Q: Why should folks attend your session at Netroots Nation, and how can they connect with you?

A: I had a blast teaching basic design last year in Detroit with my friend Chris McNeil. I really enjoy teaching about the concepts that drive everyday design and working with people to have that “A-HA!” moment. Every decision should be an intentional one in design, so this is a great session for anyone who has to work with designers and just wants to understand why we do what we do! Beginner designers are obviously very welcome. You may contact me at @candicecd, I will be using the hashtag #NN15FID


To attend this training, or one of the 39 others at Netroots Nation 2015 in Phoenix, register now.

About Melissa Foley

Melissa is the Director of Training and Mentoring for Netroots Foundation and New Media Mentors. She aims to use her MBA + nonprofit background to teach organizations to use new media tools strategically.


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