The grad show

This is the piece that I showcased at the Graduate show 2011, I enjoyed the show, but found it to be less than productive in talking to industry people and creating contacts as there was a mixture of parents, students and industry people. It was not clear as to who was who and I believe that caused some confusion within everybody, but on the whole I think the event was successful and I wish everyone taking part in new blood the best of luck.

I decided to place a culture jam into the show to take away the focus of me as a designer but as a person who believes in design, a person who has the design skill and knowledge to continue to grow and form opinions about design and current issues. I pride myself on being honest and clear and in that want my designs to be the same, I recently had the pleasure of meeting new design people that reinforced the very reason I love to design. It seemed that the course that I was on was overrun with people that want fame, fortune and exclusivity in their career (all the things a design school wants their students to want) but meeting these new people gave me the optimism that there are agency’s and people working in the same or similar style and have similar morals as me and that is completely refreshing.

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The end of the last four years of my life

So, the time has come for me to graduate from Leeds University into the big wide world of design. I graduate in four weeks and on that day I will be thinking about the numerous projects and placements I have completed over the years. University was a great experience, it opened my eyes to a lot of new things including a laser cutter, cider-again, green tea, paperchase, credit cards, loans, insurance, gardening, having the ability to always find money for a holiday, Pantone mugs, after effects, church(for a bit), vinyl, lava lamps, pov aid, co-op and shisha. (There is probably a bit more, but im bored of thinking of things, let alone you reading them)

Without Uni I would not have been able to stand on my own two feet and sort my life out, have complete control of its mould, learning about mistakes that I should have made to make me learn and never forget. Remembering that Uni is something more than studying, it is a life decision, because your life is never the same afterward.

Uni overall has been a great experience, like many other people I have had a lot of ups and downs over the past four years, but I have come out of it knowing who I am and what I want from life.

Blind_Final Project

There is just a few weeks left of my final year at University and my focus is on my Disability project.

The project is a designed and illustrated story book for blind children. The reason you might ask? Well, sighted children have the ability to extend their imagination through sight,  memories, and using image references. But the majoirty of blind children(if born blind) have no perception of light and with that no image references.

Thus the point of this book is to extend the experience of a story or book for blind children, creating new experiences, new thoughts and references that are  not based on gimmicky tricks such as fur and fabric.

I have chosen the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, why? Because after visiting a few blind adults at cohearant vision in Headingley Leeds (which is due to shut down in June – But that is another story)http://www.cohearentvision.org.uk/, I was inspired by some of the comments made by individuals about certain books, experiences and textures. The excitement  became about sounds and smells and so this set me off on a journey to create a real multidimensional and multi-sensual experience for blind children.

This project has had many strengths, but there have been obstacles to overcome, for instance, convincing other designers that blind people deserve to be designed for was a breathtaking experience for me and has driven this project right from the start. Sourcing the paper, binding materials, finding the right techniques to produce such a book as a one off or as a commercial project, realising the time constraints and developing a sense of double message towards blind people and children, as well as targeting designers to think more about the way in which they look at design and the act of designing.

The book has about 25 pages and within that about half is braille and half is illustration. I am very excited at the prospect of the finished book, as I have worked very hard to get this project to a point where it has an established design, structure and commercial standing.

The project hand in is the 13th May 2011, more about the project development and finishings soon.

LENT_Day 21

So Day 21 of lent, I have now well and truly given up on lent. but have proved that it is possibly to live off such a little amount even in the west.

what I didnt know what that there is a current challenge from a charity to live bellow the line.

here is the website link: http://www.livebelowtheline.org.uk/

after living like this for 2 weeks, one week or 5 days would be easy enough for me to do. But it is interesting comparison to make when looking at western lifestyles compared to those that live on less than a pound every day of their lives in africa and such.

I have been a fantastically educative experience, but it is much easier to be a consumer in the western world. I have indeed changed my lifestyle for the better in terms of how much money I spend on food and consumer items because I am more aware of the impact it has on me and others around the world. I try to purchase fair trade and eco whenever I can to support those people and products.