Chris Corneal is Associate Professor of Graphic Design in the Department of Art, Art History, and Design at Michigan State University. In addition to his regular teaching duties, Prof. Corneal also serves as the Faculty Advisor for Design Center and the Director of Graphic Design Internships. He received his BFA in Graphic Design from Western Kentucky University and his MFA in Graphic Design from University of Memphis.
Throughout his career Prof. Corneal has continued to work as a freelance graphic designer, while also volunteering his design services for several non-profits. His work has been published in numerous award annuals and books, including: Graphis, Logo Lounge, Logoliscious, HOW International Design Annual, The Designer as… Author, Producer, Activist, Entrepreneur, Curator, and Collaborator: New Models for Communicating, American Corporate Identity, American Graphic Design and Advertising, The Means By Which We Find Our Way, The Creativity Awards Annual, 1000 Handmade Greeting Cards, Graphic Design USA, The New Big Book of Layouts, The Big Book of Design Ideas, and The Big Book of Logos. Prof. Corneal’s work has also been shown nationally and internationally in several juried exhibitions including: I Profess: The Graphic Design Manifesto, New Views 2: Conversations and Dialogues in Graphic Design, The Means By Which We Find Our Way, De:(Kon’strukt’), United Designs International Designs Alliance Exhibition, UCDA Annual Design Exhibition, A Mad Tea (Towel) Party, Sound and Fury: The Fine Art of Rock Posters and Adversary: A Touring Exhibition (of) Contesting Graphic Design.
Prof. Corneal has presented refereed papers at national and international conferences hosted by College Art Association, University of the Arts-London, University and College Designers Association, and University of Minnesota. Student projects completed in Prof. Corneal’s design courses have been recognized nationally in Print Magazine, How Magazine, Presenting Shakespeare: 1100 Posters From Around the World, American Corporate Identity, Letterhead and Logo Design, and Big Idea Magazine.
My work in the field of graphic design shares an underlying theme: My belief in the social relevance and social responsibility of graphic design. When design is effective, it initiates and contributes to the greater social dialogue. With the power to create work to be mechanically reproduced to be viewed by mass audiences, graphic designers have an obligation to use that power responsibly.
I attempt to integrate my design philosophy of social responsibility with my freelance work, my pro-bono work and my more personal social-justice works. I am very lucky in my current position, as it allows me the luxury of accepting commissions with which I identify in some way. I especially enjoy projects that require me to condense challenging layered subtext of social justice themes into focused visual metaphor.