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CONFERENCE Every EAST school knows that, when it comes to the annual EAST Conference, one of the biggest challenges is designing a booth. It’s a 10foot cube that offers a blank canvas upon which to paint a picture of a program’s projects and its personality. There are, of course, aesthetic considerations, which are reflected in the Signature Design awards. For three years running, the Mountain Home School District has proven their prowess at combining their efforts to create remarkable, collaborative displays. This year’s winner for individual design was Morrilton High School for its Matrix-inspired digs. But while EAST incorporates art, it also has a fundamental identity in technology. Hence, the Best of Tech award for the school displaying the best use of technology in its booth. Students and their facilitator from this year’s winner, first-time Conference participant Westside High School out of Jonesboro, offered some thoughts on how they achieved their stylish synthesis, which turned out to be quite fitting.



Braidyn Milner, design

Tyler Wood, technology

“If you’re trying to design something, whether a flyer or a poster or your backdrop for EAST Conference, you need to have a specific theme in mind before you start. Because if you just start throwing stuff on there, it’s going to look sloppy.”

“Originally we were going to go with gaming, because of the Level Up [component of the Conference theme], but then we voted. From there, we took some basic ideas of Tron, like neon colors and circles like their discs, and worked those in.”

Brooke Chapman, facilitator

Jonathan Bunnell, technology

“We taped off a 10x10x10 square in the classroom and started with the theme of the Conference and what we wanted our theme to be. One of my students suggested Tron Legacy, because this is our first year and the start of our program.”


“We had five or six themes laid out, and we finally decided we wanted to go with Tron Legacy [to inspire the aesthetic]. And then somebody came up with the slogan: leaving our legacy. So, with that, I started looking at Tron, because I’d seen the movie but didn’t immediately know what to do for the background.”

“[Good design] will keep people’s attention on what they need to be focusing on. Around text and things they need to read, keep it clean, but it can be busy around the pictures. Keep them looking at what they need to look at.”


“I didn’t know how to use Photoshop at all. But when [Mrs.] Chapman asked if anyone wanted to design the posters, I said I would do it.”


“Really as soon as we came up with Tron, I immediately wanted LED lights.”

Spring 2017 EQ  

The quarterly magazine of the EAST Initiative.

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