Hi, welcome to my blog!
I am Sheyda Rashidi, a designer from Iran. I moved to Vancouver with my cat Mili to further my education at Emily Carr University in the MDes interdisciplinary program. Even though I have a bachelor’s degree in Visual Communication from the Art University of Tehran, I see myself as a strategist and a problem solver rather than a graphic designer. I have experience working in various design projects where a social problem was at the center. For instance, in my project “Farsi typeface design for Dyslexia”, I investigated ways of enabling people who are challenged with Dyslexia to communicate through Farsi’s written language and boosting its legibility for them. In a Theme park project located in Tehran, I worked as an assistant project manager for a team of 10 to investigate how we could create communities and develop critical thinking in Iranians through thematic games.
Concerned for the natural disasters occurring one after another in my country and all over the globe, I feel the necessity to nudge my education and career path in the sustainability direction. Thus, my passion for food and my concern for the environment collided, and I am eager to research food sustainability.
Here you can find my CV and portfolio.
And this is my Email Address.
My Research Interests
Being a member of an Iranian foodie family has influenced my engagement with food greatly. Home-cooked meals were a part of our everyday life thanks to my marvellous mom and her fantastic cooking. Not only she uses fresh ingredients, but she also makes everything from scratch herself, including jams, pickles, yogurt, cheese, other dairies, vinegar, dried fruits and herbs, etc. You would think that with all this cooking and making, our food waste would be high, but in fact, it was very minimal because of the various techniques she uses to preserve food or turn waste of one food into another food. For instance, she uses bruised or brown fruit to make vinegar, which she then uses to make pickles.
Observing my mom and her mom and her three sisters, I couldn’t help but notice that they have knowledge that has been passed on through generations. This makes me wonder, can Iranian food culture offer a few sustainable solutions to the west?
From my sister’s experience of living in Toronto and my travels abroad, I knew that the food culture is different in the west. One of the most surprising differences was a desire for beautiful produce rather than healthy or tasteful ones. In other words, people tend to shop for produce that looks perfect; they will not buy a piece of bruised fruit or vegetable off the market. This desire has a chain effect of enormous proportion. To name a few, it leads to the use of chemicals and fertilizers in the field in hopes of making the fruits and vegetables look bigger and better; thus, the fruit and vegetables lose their natural taste (I wish I could make you taste the fresh summer fruits of Iran!). Another effect of this desire is the loss of an unimaginable amount of food in the fields or in the markets.
With all that said, I’m currently very curious to find out:
How and Why people prioritize aesthetics in food?
What has been the impact of design products (packaging, brand visuals, etc.) on shaping this desire?
How and why middle eastern culture differs, and what can we learn from it?
Food Sustainability, Food Aesthetics, ontological design, Iranian food culture, Iranian food traditions
Here you can also find my Research Visualization.
Overview of My Time at Emily Carr
Here you can have a glimpse of what I have been doing since the beginning of the semester. Please also check my blog for updates on the details of each project.