Graphic Design

Hand washing and our interconnected universe

A simple message, "Wash Your Hands," and the interconnectedness of the creative mind.

Hand washing. It’s on everyone’s mind and so important right now for public health. But does this collective experience also point to how connected we are creatively?



Especially in challenging times, like a pandemic, turning to our creative minds can be a way for us to focus and grow. Senior Creative Director Linda Rochelle challenged our designers to do what they do best, channel their experiences into something productive. In this case, a fun and unique set of “Wash Your Hands” stickers that we could put up around both our ADG and home offices.

The designs are striking, but equally striking is a little coincidence between this project and MICA student’s thesis project from nearly a decade ago. We like to think this suggests there’s a little bit more going on in the universe.

But first, let’s check in with our designers

We asked each of the participating designers to choose their favorites and share a little background on their inspiration and thought process.

Tori Peck

I had recently come across some upcoming design trends and inspiration, and one of the topics was warped blocks of text. I knew I wanted one of my designs to look like water, so I typeset the “wash your hands” message as a repeating pattern and got to work warping it with the liquify tool until it resembled the distortions of a rippling pool. I overlaid a water texture to enhance the effect, and colored the text so one line of the message stands out more legibly.


Chelsea Jamerson

I was inspired by 90’s grunge on this one as well as a recent design trend I wanted to try out. Playing off of the word grunge to remind you to wash your hands!


Shawna Crouch

I was inspired by the idea of putting up signs in school for young kids, and that lead me to looking at brightly colored, custom lettered type with fun textures. They’re meant to be fun reminders that feel friendly and not forceful, since we could all use a little kindness and brightness right now.


Sam Uder

For this Design I was inspired by the first show I binged during quarantine, Euphoria. Due to the pandemic I feel like washing your hands is going to forever be associated with quarantine… so that’s how I made the connection!


Enter, Christina Beard’s ‘Critiqued’

Some years ago, a MICA student undertook a similar exercise for her thesis. Christina Beard’s project revolved around that same simple reminder message: “Wash Your Hands.” She concepted and created the initial design of a Wash Your Hands poster, then ran it by an esteemed creative leader for creative critique and direction. Taking that feedback to heart, she produced a new version of the poster and presented it to another design leader.

She went through this iterative process 23 times—with many strategic and visual shifts along the way, and her thesis was published in a book entitled Critiqued: Inside the Minds of 23 Leaders in Design.

The complete evolution of Beard's design experiment

Our challenge unfolded independently and a little differently. But we can’t help but be astonished at how small the world is and reflect on how interconnected we all must be. At the same time, we’re amazed at the vast possibilities of creativity and individualism.

The final set

The result of our challenge was a set of 12 custom-designed stickers. You can download your own printable set below for your home or office!

We hope these designs put a little light in your day and inspire you to scrub-a-dub-dub. We would love to see how you use them.

You can share your photos with us via Twitter or Facebook.

Stay safe and look out for each other!

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