Diane Staver

Graphic & Web Design

Foundations Instructor
The Art Institute of Indianapolis

Diane Staver

Art is a competitive field... it isn't for the faint of heart. Diane Staver , Foundations Instructor , The Art Institute of Indianapolis

Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t want to be an artist. Some of my earliest memories are of creating art. In kindergarten I used to fight over art supplies with a friend...today, we’re both art instructors—and still good friends!

How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

I offer students my extensive experience in commercial art, the fine arts, and as a teacher. I stress the importance of making sure your design reaches the intended audience; researching your topic and target market; professional ethics; how to sell your design idea to the client; and the importance of deadlines.

What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

In my Foundation classes, we look at how people interpret visual information on an unconscious level. Those drawn to studying the commercial arts are often strong in their understanding of visual information. Understanding how people perceive visual information helps designers create work that accurately communicates to their intended audience. It also helps the designer to work faster and with more confidence. I also enjoy talking about creativity...how to get in the mode and find ways to work through “creative block.”

What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

You need to really want your degree— and your career. Art is a competitive field...it isn’t for the faint of heart.

What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?

To succeed in commercial art, you need to push and challenge yourself creatively while building a strong work ethic.

Anything else you’d like to share?

I’m an active fine artist; my work shows across the U.S. I love the arts, and I’m fortunate to be able to teach what I love.