People’s Graphic Design Archive x Instagram Histories

By Kelsey Zuberbuehler
PGDA x Instagram Histories
By Shannon Topham
PGDA x Instagram Histories​
By Emmett Crass
PGDA x Instagram Histories
​By Izzy Gavaza
PGDA x Instagram Histories​
By Max Lynn
PGDA x Instagram Histories

Level: , , , ,
Duration: 3 weeks
Category: ,
Filed Under: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Bookmark Project

Project Brief

Select an entry from The People's Graphic Design Archive. Write an informative, but brief history about it for the PSUGD Design History Instagram that connects it to a current issue, designer, or concept.


  • Some History of the piece.
  • Make sure you integrate context for that piece. It could include why the designer/producer worked in a certain way (regional, client, politics, social atmosphere, etc.). 
  • Explain why it is important as a piece of graphic design and how it relates to an issue today. This is the meat of the piece. It\'s the analysis of the work and its relevance that makes it a critical reading, rather than just a summary.


  • 2,200 characters (roughly 380 words, per IG max)
  • 3 reliable sources required (though this will not be included in the IG post).
  • 1 JPG (minimum), 10 JPGS (maximum) of the topic


Learning Objectives

  • Evolve critical writing skills
  • Learn to make connections between the past and present
  • Learn about graphic design histories outside of the canon
  • Learn to work with a digital archive


  • Students turn in text with images to be uploaded to a class Instagram account. (3 citations are required, but are not posted on Instagram due to limited space.)


Overall, I was pleased with the writing my students did for this project. Some students will struggle with including analysis versus a simple retelling of events, but I do make a point of sharing examples and talking about how to approach this. 

I find that students enjoy the fact that their histories are shared online, and can be written in a way that is less academic, and more editorial in style to grab audiences on social media.

Related projects