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Meet your 2016 Advisory Board: Craig Hughes

Written by
AIGA Nebraska
May 9, 2016

Meet Your Advisory Board

Craig Hughes

Director of Membership: 2010-2012
President: 2012-2014
National Nominating Committee: 2014-2016

Why did you join AIGA?

I joined AIGA in 2008 after our chapter hosted Bruce Mau and Bennett Peji, two designers who inspired me to consider the impact of culture and environment on finding appropriate design solutions. I met a handful of like-minded designers at AIGA events who were more than happy to introduce me to others in the creative community, so I became a member to support the organization and to ensure that other emerging designers received the same opportunities I did.

What inspires you?

In no particular order (except the first): My wife, Bob’s Burgers, multiple linear regression, Fritz Kahn, beer, Wilco’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, dinner with friends, anything Eric Nyffeler makes, ethnography, design anthropology, Star Trek, Larry David, the Badlands of South Dakota, Noli’s Pizzeria, Charles Sanders Peirce, Kitaro’s Silk Road, the !Kung San people of the Kalahari, red wine and a telescope, cognitive dissonance, discourse analysis, Ken Friedman.

How do you AIGA?


What do you like to do in your free time?

Basically all the things above.

What advice do you have for emerging creatives?

The design disciplines have been shifting dramatically in the last few decades. Keep your eyes on the horizon. Graphic trends fade quickly, but the ability to evaluate complex systems and solve sticky problems is timeless.

As an applied anthropologist, do you ever get asked about digging up dinosaur bones?

It never ends. Usually it’s a joke; sometimes it’s not. Quite a few graphic design friends have asked me if I still identify as a designer, which is a fair question because my work nowadays doesn’t always look like graphic or communications design. A lot of what I do focuses on building a rich understanding of human experiences (the bread and butter of cultural anthropology) in order to design better products, services, and experiences for end users. There’s a lot of geeky anthropology and social science stuff in-between, but to me it’s what Design is all about: improving the human experience.

Choose a color.

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