graphic designer. citizen. social change agent.
community advocate. letterpress enthusiast. educator.
mother. writer. author. researcher.
Misty Thomas-Trout is an associate professor in graphic design at the University of Dayton. She holds a BFA in visual communication design from the University of Dayton and an MFA in graphic design from Ohio University. She was a 2018 Design Incubation Fellow. Her recent graphic design research, Atlas of Dayton: A City in Progress won an Ohio Arts Council’s Individual Excellence Award for FY 2021. Her poster design, No. 1 Available to All won Honorable Mention in the Graphis International, juried design competition and was published in the Graphis Poster Annual 2022 (9781931241120). In late 2021, she also received Silver in Graphis International for I Pledge Allegiance. In 2022, I Pledge Allegiance, won Gold in the International Indigo Awards in the Design for Social Change category.
She won Silver in the International Indigo Design Awards and a Gold Hermes/ADDY Award in 2019 for the Department of Art + Design Sketchbook. She won Best of Show in the Athens Voices USA 2015 and has been awarded Gold Hermes/ADDY Awards, Silver ADDY District Competition, Hermes Judges Award Honor of Excellence and Award of Excellence at the UCDA (University & College Designers Association).
Her work includes print- and community-based graphic design, writing, research and letterpress printing. Thomas-Trout’s research focuses on visualizing the interconnectedness of the human networking system through design as social practice and storytelling that can raise awareness and promote a more just society. Her work is informed and influenced by methods within the socioeconomic sciences, humanities and geography. Thomas-Trout approaches visual communication as a tool to influence culture; advocate for human rights; reveal injustices in our communities; promote equitable neighborhoods and communities.
She grew up in the village of Jewett, Ohio where the limitations of access to resources and opportunities created a unique culture that valued frugality driven by necessity. This place and the culture it embodied subconsciously influenced her future research involving the importance of community, collaboration, economic health and equitable access to opportunities and resources.