This was a project that incorporated class material I learned from Sam Lavigne’s web scraping class and Zach Liberman’s Openframeworks class.
Often we point out the lack of diversity in the design and advertising industries, but it can be difficult to visualize diversity. To bring visuals to this issue, I thought making a portrait of an ‘average face’ of award-winning designers and art directors would be a good experiment to try.
To start with, I used Python to download an archive of portraits of award-winning graphic designers from AIGA’s archive of medalists and award-winning art directors from ADC’s hall of fame. Then using OpenCV to detect 68 facial landmarks, I averaged these points to align the facial portraits.
As expected, the average faces represented a male Caucasian face. Looking for a bit more optimism, I decided to average the faces of board members of these very same organizations in 2018. Here, I definitely saw a change. The faces started to tilt towards more diversity in terms of gender, although it still wasn’t representative of the demographic of New York City.