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Art & Art History
University of Mississippi

Q&A with Vivi McCracken (BFA Graphic Design)

Vivi McCracken
March 20-24th, 2023

Closing Reception
When: Thursday, March 23rd, 2023, 4:30–6:00 PM
Where: Gallery 130, Meek Hall

Introduce yourself and tell us where you are from.
Hi! I’m Vivi McCracken. I am currently a senior at the University of Mississippi, earning my Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in Graphic Design.

What attracted you to the Department of Art & Art History?
Before coming to Ole Miss, I met a girl named Victoria Daily who was a student in the BFA painting program. I came to visit the campus, and she let me shadow her for the day. Walking around Meek Hall with her, meeting all the different professors, I knew that this was the program I wanted to join. I got to see the work she was getting to create and the experience she was gaining. I wanted to be a part of a community of creatives who genuinely cared about their work.

What type of artwork do you create?
I am primarily a graphic designer and enjoy creating work within the music industry, such as album covers, event posters, and merchandise.

Could you explain your process?
I love the idea that the sound of a band can be represented through design. People are often exposed to the graphics of a musician before ever hearing a song, so it becomes imperative that their artwork reflects their music.    


Which artists do you look to for inspiration?
I love the psychedelic posters of Wes Wilson. I also love the work of Kate Bingaman-Burt, as she combines graphic design and drawing in a fun way. I love to “doodle,” so I find her style of work inspiring.

Which professors inspired you the most?
There are so many professors that I wish I could list here. Tyler Barnes has taught many of the graphic design courses that I have taken, and I have learned so much from him. My knowledge of the graphic design industry itself as well as aspects of design is largely due to him and those classes. I have also grown so much in my drawing abilities under the teaching of Brooke Alexander, who has greatly encouraged and influenced me throughout my time at Ole Miss.

What has been your favorite class during your years here?
I have loved the classes that I did not expect to ever get to take, such as ceramics and sculpting. Those classes were a brand new creative outlet for me that pushed me in new ways

Could you describe a favorite memory here in the department?
My favorite memories tend to be from Brooke Alexander’s classes. We have similar taste in music, so she would play songs that I love, and I would often sing along while drawing, which just felt like home.

Do you have any hobbies outside of the art department?
Music is my other creative outlet. I write songs and recently recorded my first EP of all original songs, Vivi McCracken, which is set to be released at the beginning of this summer. I also perform as often as I can, whether in Oxford; Nashville, TN; or my hometown of Austin, TX.

What is your favorite thing about Oxford or the University?
I love the community of both Oxford and the University. Growing up in Austin, I have never experienced anything outside of a big city, so I was shocked to find how close knit this town feels.

Can we find you on social media?
I am on Instagram as @vivimccracken.

Do you have any plans after graduation?
I am planning to move to Nashville to pursue graphic design in the music industry as well as songwriting.