Jury involves a group of skilled artists meeting to appraise a finished layout or artifact and make constructive and creative suggestions for improvements. It is also a way of evaluating a graphic design work, especially if it is meant for competition, examination, campaign, commission, etc. In this sense, the jury gives a decision and award prizes or marks for the works. The elements of the work that merits the attention of the members of the jury board include the format and orientation of the paper, the placement of the text, headlines, illustration, harmony or colour contrast and visual appeal.
The jury system does not judge the suitability of a work or award marks based on the intuition of members. However, their weighed criticisms are based on some set criteria accepted for proficient productions in the area of graphic designing. These criteria have been explained below.
1. Creativity and originality showed by the artist
Members of the team look out for evidence of originality or uniqueness in the creation of the artist. They ask themselves that ‘What new thing has this artist brought on board?’ or ‘what has he added to that area of graphic designing which was not formerly there?’
2. Suitability of the work to its theme or objective
Usually, when a project work is assigned in the field of Graphic design, it comes with a subject. Such as ‘Produce a shopping bag to be used for buying a birthday present for a female friend.’ Therefore, the final work is assessed on this theme. The choice of design, colours, lettering style as well as the construction of the package must resonate with this subject. If the choice of the design does not correlate with birthday, or it is not feminine to be used by a female, then the objective for the production, was thus, not achieved.
3. Significance of colours and how they are used
Graphic artists exhibit their supreme knowledge of colour psychology and symbolism in their mastery selection of colours to suit the theme or occasion when it will be used. For instance, producing items for joyous occasions like Christmas calls for the use of gay or bright colours while products meant for solemn occasions such as funeral posters demands the use of somber colours like brown, red or black.
4. Technical proficiency or finishing
This refers to the dexterity of the artist shown in the usage and application of the tools and materials for production. Also, it seeks to judge the work based on the rubrics of the graphic communication tool designed. For instance, if the product is a poster, does it agree with the accepted standards of poster designing such as legibility and readability of text, clarity in the illustrations, and harmonies in the choice of colours? In addition, the final appearance must be aesthetically pleasing and attractive, giving no room for complaints by prospective clients.
5. Evidence of study (written report including introduction, tools, and materials used, processes, illustrations etc. used for the work)
This is important in projects meant for academic purposes such as the grading of students in the High school or at tertiary institutions. To vouch that the project was solely executed by the candidate, s/he has to describe the processes that were carried out to arrive at the final production in a written report. Moreover, it will furnish members of the jury information on the procedural steps, tools, and materials as well as finishing technique employed by the artist for the production.
A jury team is essential in the total skills development of both amateur and matured Graphic artists. The under listed points illustrate some of the benefits of a jury.
1. It helps in determining the criteria for qualification in a competition.
2. It sets the standard for grading works into excellent, very good, good, average etc.
3. It determines the suitability of text, illustration or colour to the aim or theme of the project.
4. It serves as a means of analyzing, criticizing and interpreting works.
5. It allows designers or competitors to interpret their works.
6. It assists in recommending the best works for prices or awards.
7. It encourages critical thinking.
8. It provides a variety of solutions to a pressing need.
9. It improves efficiency.
10. It builds the capacity for effective assessment.
11. It builds self-image and confidence.
12. It prepares the artist for the world of work.