Aims for Year 2

- Take a far more active part in critiques and learn to take note of criticism as a positive to allow me to further my design potential.

- Continue to build my confidence and not let first impressions of tasks, challenges and briefs daunt me.

- Make much better use of the opportunities and resources provided by the AIB.

- Obtain a far greater insight into professional design by looking at more books, magazines, websites and research sources as well as attending more exhibitions, lectures and undertaking more placements and live briefs.

- Begin to form a design identity for myself which I am proud of and wish to be represented by.

- Consider my options for the future and begin to form an idea of what I want to do next.


First Day Back / PPRD 2

I was quite nervous about beginning the second year as my confidence is never particularly great when starting a new education course or continuing on with a course after a lengthy break, particularly because I feel like I can’t remember and haven’t retained any of the knowledge or skills that I have previous possessed and learnt in previous studies. This is just an ongoing battle with confidence which I intend to beat by the end of this year as it holds me back from completing work to my full potential as well as discarding perfectly good ideas which I think maybe stupid or not relevant.

The first day back was a relatively generic first day in which we got to socialise with classmates whom many of us hadn’t seen since the end of the first year, as well as a brief meeting with Sally, Neil and Kit as well as a short introduction to our new print technician. It was a pleasure to begin to get back into the working environment (although no course work was completed today). As before we were required to complete enrolment before returning to the studio where we were issued our PPRD 2 unit brief. We were also informed as to the requirements of the brief as well as the significant differences to our first PPRD unit last year. We were also told we were required to set up Flickr.com and Blogger.com accounts to enable our course leaders to follow our progress.I look forward to documenting my progress throughout the year in my PPRD as in the first year I found it instrumental in maintaining a clear direction for my work as well as a useful file of previous ideas, designers and other relevant subjects which enable me to further my studies.

Somewhat annoyingly we were then told our first day back would be Thursday meaning that after having the huge summer holiday I would be having another two days off before actually getting down to doing some work. UGH!!

The Big Bad First Post / End of First Year / Summer Fun and Work

After completing the first year of the course (which I enjoyed thoroughly but found difficult at times, but then again what would be the point if it wasn’t challenging) I was extremely pleased to be able to kick back and relax. This lasted about two/three weeks before relaxing got extremely boring, especially seeing as much of my time was spent working as a wash up slave in a pub kitchen (shudders). There is something quite inspirational about looking into a sink full of murky, greasy water congested with the floating remnants of customer's meals for the whole day. Inspirational of course in the sense that it makes one think... "I’m damned if I’m going to do this sort of thing for the rest of my days!"

Fortunately I was able to do a few design jobs throughout the summer and even though they were relatively small jobs it was nice to be able to do a job where concept was second to simple readability and conext. And of course it was nice to earn some money out of design as well. I also discovered that having a friend working as a printer is a huge benefit as it will allow you to make a bigger profit on your work simply by getting the print done at cost without the additional fees, VAT etc...

The jobs which I completed for various clients were:
A website for my brother - a practising illustrator. Although an extremely simple web design with a huge amount of validation fixes which still need doing, I was pleased with this design as I was able to develop certain skills for web and was able to work alongside a client (even though he is my brother). --> http://www.andrewwalter.co.uk/

A flyer for a fund raising golf day for registered charity - The Mission To Seafarers.
This design task came about when I was approached by a good friend who informed me that his mother who worked for the charity was looking for a designer to produce a simple no frills, double sided flyer which would present the details of the fund raising event as well as having a form to register the details of people who may have been interested on the flipside of the flyer. The client was very pleased, sadly due to poor planning on their behalf the event failed to go ahead as planned. --> http://www.flickr.com/photos/30943909@N02/2912342002/in/photostream/

A flyer and ticket design for a New Years Eve event in a local pub - This task came to me while I was working at the pub over summer as new management was introduced. I noticed some awful flyers around the pub and local town advertising various themed nights and parties happening at the pub. In light of seeing these amateur designs, complete with pixelated imagery pulled straight from the web and use of some classic fonts such as... yes that’s right, everyone’s favourite, Comic Sans MS, I decided to offer my developing services as a designer. At first I thought nothing would come of my offer, but with a few weeks the landlord approached me and asked if I would be able to produce a poster design (A4 and A3) and a ticket design (A6) for a print run of 30 posters and 500 tickets. After various meetings with the landlord, it was established that a traditional English pub style flyer would not do as the clientele of the establishment is mainly young people so bearing that in mind I set to work. Simple and effective with a type flow due to the colours allowing the audience to quickly obtain the details from the piece. The layout and appearance of the flyer is reminiscent of the minimal style of many clubbing flyers (although it is a pub and not a club I felt this was a move in the right direction due to the pubs clientele majority which is young adults). --> http://www.flickr.com/photos/30943909@N02/2912342386/in/photostream/

Apart from these three jobs, my summer mainly comprised of working full time at the pub, socialising, getting out as much as possible and a week long holiday in Antwerp, Belgium with two of the days spent in Amsterdam because I had to visit again due to falling in love with it on our first year trip. On with the show!!...