Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Christmas Me.

Last weekend I was working really hard, not on uni work as I probably should have been but on making my costume for a friends birthday. The theme is obviously 'christmas' with it being this time of year and all! And after much thought I decided to go as a christmas tree.

With a green top, some ball balls, and some tinsel its amazing what you can make! Still need to finish my outfit, got some more ball balls to be sewn on!
Oh and a star for my head!

Merry Christmas!

The Diving Bell And Butterfly Book.

Recently I've just finished reading the diving bell and butterfly by Jean Dominique Bauby. After being introduced to the film at a kino night, and being particularly influenced by this film, I decided to buy the book and have a read.

I'm not a massive reader, I rather watching films, maybe that sounds a bit lazy I don't know? But I really enjoyed reading this book. The amount of time I've heard someone say 'its not like the book' about a film and not really understood what they were going on about, I now feel I do!

The film was awe-inspiring, but the book was much much more! I found the book to be a lot more personal, with a lot more attention to detail, and bits that were not included in the film. The film has obviously been influenced and adapted by other people, but the book was primary, straight from Jean himself. Anything he has wanted to include in this book, his feelings, personal thoughts, have been included. To think he has blinked the whole book, is unbelievable. The back of the book also includes an obituary, and a brief few pages on bringing it to screen.

I would highly recommend the book to anyone who really enjoyed the film, at only 139 pages, its a light but beautiful read. I'm glad I bought this book, as I consider the film and the story itself to be one of the most influential narratives I've heard yet.

PDP 11/12/09

On Friday morning I attended my pdp session. Although it was only a pdp meeting to see how we were getting on I found it helpful in regards to understanding where I'm at with each project. I was asked to describe briefly where I'm at with each project and to get that clear in my head was great. Although I have a lot of work to do over christmas I'm fairly confident that I will be ok!

My pdp session was handy as I also got to run a few ideas past my tutor and get advice on a couple of things I wasn't sure on in my projects. I was also able to ask advice on which brief to do over christmas as I had 2 in mind and couldn't decide.

I found the PDP over all very helpful and was able to ask a lot of things that I was unsure about or needed clearing up. Filling in the sheets was also a good idea as if gives us chance to voice across the things we think are/ aren't working on the course. The only thing I found to be a little annoying was that my sketchbooks, journal and blog samples weren't even asked to be seen or mentioned, and these were the things we were asked to bring!

Friday, 4 December 2009

Poorly Poorly...and apologies.

Today I am unable to attend the Ian Anderson workshop. The past few days I've been feeling a little under the weather, suffering from terrible headaches, tiredness and the occasional nosebleed I found myself not being up to going in this morning.

Although I've told my group, I'd like to apologize again for not being there. I know you will do brilliantly, and make the Yellow group proud! I was really looking forward to reciting limericks with you!

I am a 'Creative Friend'.

Ian Anderson's workshop group were asked to bring along a creative friend this week and I was luckily asked by Jemma 'C dawg' Connor. I'd heard about their current pointless task, so knew that what we would have to do would be along the lines of something pointless, random or irrelevant! I will admit that I was a little anxious but excited to see what we would be doing.

After watching a few people from the last group present Ian gave us a few tips on presenting, telling us what we should and shouldn't do. For example:
  • If uncomfortable while presenting set your eyes on one person, maybe a friend or someone you feel comfortable with.
  • Always finish a presentation with 'Thank you' or 'Any questions?'.
  • If a presentation is to be 10mins then you should make it that long, otherwise it may seem that you haven't tried and aren't bothered!
And then we were given our brief! Golly what a brief this was, until explained I was so confused! We were to go into teams and would be allocated a colour, we were then to try and convince the world government that they should use our colour over everyone else's. It was to be pointless, fun, and include creative thinking.

I was in the Yellow team. We began brain storming thinking of such things as, yellow food, associations with yellow, feelings, meanings in other countries and everyday yellow objects. We also looked into songs, maybe a sing song may be in order?

We came up with many ideas, but one in particular which involved our mothers and limericks!

Watch this space!

Helen Murgatroyd Lecture

I really enjoyed Helen's lecture, I found it to be quite relaxed and felt on board with what she was saying. As I've mentioned before its nice to have visiting lectures by people who are not 'massive' designer's but people we can relate to.

Helen showed us some work she had been producing from her time in uni, from her year out to her time on the MA printing course. Although some of her current work was quite different I found her drawing and printmaking to be some of the nicest illustrations I've seen. Although I didn't quite understand some of the inventions she had made and some of the more 'out there' pieces, I really enjoyed looking at her hand drawn pieces and her web site is full of them!

I liked the way all of her work was experimental and very hand based, something I personally appreciate more. I also found it interesting when she told us that she worked as a post woman for a year in between uni and her MA course. She had the idea that if she was a post woman in the mornings (to pay the rent) she would be able to spend all afternoon on her work. What a brilliant idea!! But although that was the plan it didn't stop her from sketching while on the job!

I really like the linear approach Helen has in her work, and her rough looking sketches look lovely, especially the work she produced for Alice Russell, the album art work and ideas that were made for merchandise on her tour.

I also really liked the illustrations Helen created for the TV show "Vicar Of Dibley". She worked along side 'doodledoo motion' who did the graphics for the show and made the title sequence and stings to introduce each clip. Helen created drawings as backdrops that appeared behind interviewed celebrities, lovely sketches! (Similar to drawings she did as a postwoman, and also mapping out her home, which she showed in the lecture.)

Something I felt comforted by was the fact that Helen had a year out after uni, as she felt like she didn't know what she wanted to do and felt like she hadn't found herself. This was comforting because I myself am a little bit unsure about what I want to do, and as Helen said she valued the time out, and I think that's what I might need. It's something I need to think about, but until then I have lots to do!

Hamish Muir Lecture

"All designers have some sort of OCD"

On the first of December not only did we have one lecture but two! The first lecture was by Hamish Muir, a graphic designer and founding principal of 8VO. I didn't really know what to expect as I hadn't heard or researched into his work. If I'm totally honest I really didn't like most of the stuff he showed us. The catalogue and flyers he designed for the museum were interesting and I thought that these were the best pieces he showed us throughout the lecture.

He mentioned that his way of working was to cut and paste and to actually make the pieces in the actual size that they would eventually be. This is one of the only things I could relate to within the lecture as this is the way in which I like to work.

Mark Holt and Simon Johnston were also the founders of 8VO and together they designed identities, print, publishing and information design. They also designed record sleeves which was also one other thing i could relate to as I'm studying it for my essay. Hamish explained that they preferred doing the back of the album cover rather than the front as they wouldn't have to worry if the artist would like it or not.

I understand that design is appealing to people in different ways, but my personal opinion on the work he showed was not to my taste. I found the colours to be quite sickly, and in your face, and at times there was too much going on. I noted down in my book that I didn't think I would look twice at some of the posters he had designed, although they are colourful and attention grabbing they don't appeal to me at all. I thought some of them were quite horrible looking!

There were few pieces that did appeal to me, and this was only because there was lack of colour in them. The more subtle pieces with less colour, I felt worked better than the others. I also found the work in Octavo to be nicely designed and appealing. Over all I was glad I went to the lecture, but didn't find his work to be personally interesting to me. I spoke to other people and they found it to be interesting and liked his work, showing that design is seen differently to everyone, and that taste in design is also varied.

Essay update...

On Wednesday I had my tutorial with Mack. I was a little worried as I thought the draft I had handed in was rather messy and needed a lot of work doing to it. The written work in my opinion is my weakest section of the over all marks. Although my journal in previous years has been of good standard, I always find that my essay work is a lot harder and needs more work.

I've always found it hard writing essays and I think this may be because my first language is welsh. I went to a welsh primary school and throughout high school was taught everything through the welsh language, maths, science, french and design.

My essay tutorial went better than I had expected, although there is a lot more to add to it and some more things I need to mention with a few changes, I am over all very happy with how it went. I have a lot more work to do over christmas!