Wednesday, 28 October 2009

our brainstorming sheets

Mind Showering

For assignment two our group got together and did a brainstorm or mind shower! We had one session of fifteen minutes to focus on The Law of the Few and then we had a half an hour session where we looked at The Stickiness Factor and The Power of Context. It was good to do them at separate times so that our brains didn't get too tired and we could keep the fresh ideas flowing. I've never really used this technique before but I found it really helpful to refresh my memory of the main points of the book and to grow on these ideas. Working as a team meant that there was a whole range of ideas that helped me to then build on these and keep it going. It was also great working as a team because this is how it is done a lot in the graphic design practice and helped me to understand how important it is for the creative process to take place.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Reading Week

During our reading week last week I took a small trip to Newcastle. Whilst there I visited the Baltic Art Gallery which all in all I was ver impressed with. The building itself is very impressive as it used to be an old flour mill, providing it with many levels and plenty of space, the perfect setting for art work. There were three main exhibitions on including a small one from legendary fashion designer Malcolm McLaren.
Photographer Martin Parr took over two levels with his exhibition named Parrworld. The photographs on the first floor were extremely insightful and gave inspiration from every day occurances. They were mainly of people at a horse racing ground, ladies with there fancy outfits on and men with there suits however the way Parr had captured them and the composition of the photos was a lot more interesting than it first sounds. My favourite of this collection was a photo of someones carpet with people knees and glasses of wine sitting on it. As this is always what you would see at one of our house gatherings on the floor but you would never think of taking a photo of such a mundane thing, but it really worked at showing the atmosphere, time and place. Moving up to Parrs next level you can view a range of objects, photographs and books from Parrs own personal collection which is very interesting. Whilst looking round this I felt connected to him as an artist as I hoard many objects and books that may seem pointless, but they looked brilliant as an exhibition. There were glass boxes filed with watches and clocks that all had either Borack Obamas, Sudan Hussein or Osama Bin Ladens face in them. I found it comical but at the same time it had meaning, like time was important to when these important figures were going to act.
Korean artist Kim Sooja took over another of the levels with her first solo artist. The large room had 8 large screens on the walls, 4 on each side where all you could see was busy streets with people walking towards the camera. However all the streets were in very different parts of the world such as Mexico City, Nambia and Egypt. It was mesmerising to watch as many different cultures and people walked towards you, giving an insight of what the place, people and culture of that place are like. I could have watched it all day.
Definatley worth a visit.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009


I ffffound this great website the other day just when I was loosing faith in the internet, just when I thought there was no inspiration left out there for me and then there it was, just about everything I've ever wanted in a website! is a like flickr in a sense as artists and designers upload photography and work. But it's so much easier to navigate your way through and it always provides you with something that you weren't expecting.
Also not just anyone can upload their work, it's invitation only which makes it all the more specail.
It has everything from pictures of exhibitions, to fashion photoshoots, to magazine layouts.
Tons of inspiration at the click of your mouse.

365 days of trash

One mans attempt to throw away nothing for a year!

Dave Chameides is the namesake for
Sustainable Dave, a title he was given after deciding to keep all of his rubbish in his basement for a year. He’s been teaching a course he created, Chasing Sustainability, to school kids for the past three years and is going to be turning it into a documentary feature in the coming year.
If something was waste that Dave generated he made it his goal to deal with it. This entailed him figuring out what it was made from, what would happen to it if it were “thrown away” and what he was going to do with it. Any waste that he generated that could be recycled, he also kept because even though recycling is better than throwing away it still takes energy and creates waste. After one year, Dave had stashed about 30 pounds of trash not including recyclables in his basement. He was able to limit his waste for a whole year to roughly the amount the average American produces in six days. The average American disposes of five pounds of rubbish daily, adding up to 1,700 pounds of rubbish annually but Dave’s rubbish dump was so small he was able to fit it away in only a 10 square feet in his basement.

(lots of great info and tips)

After reading the brave and courageous story of Sustainable Dave and his mission to keep all his waste in his basement for a year I have found it hard myself to chuck things away. It has made me realise that nothing is really rubbish, it has made me ask the question; "what is rubbish?" and I have came to the conclusion that rubbish is just the stuff in life that we are done with and choose to ignore.

Many people think that once you put rubbish in the bin then viola its gone, off the planet, disappeared, nothing more to be dealt with...but obviously they’re wrong. It has to be collected, transported to landfills or hopefully recycling centres. At the landfill it has to be buried and at the recycling plant it has all to be split and dealt with in different ways and then transported to factories to be reused. So all that transportation is causing pollution for a start! I just find the amount of things that people dispose of each day absolutely diabolical. There are a lot of people who do recycle as much as possible but there's still more that don't give a thought in the world to where there McDonalds box goes, where the plastic wrapper on there new catalogue goes, where that catalogue goes, where an old stereo ends up!!

Definitely in most cities in the UK people are provided with numerous different bins for cardboard, glass, garden waste and normal rubbish which is very positive and smaller towns are slowly getting these services also. However there are still a lot of people that are down right lazy. They were brought up chucking there unwanted things in to the same bin and they don't have the care to change for the better. This is just in the UK but it is hard to tell the situation in other countries. I never hear about all the recycling going on in China or Greece; are foreign countries better or worse when it comes to recycling?
When in 6th year I went on a study trip to Norway
and stayed with a host family who were definitely more waste conscious than many I know. In the kitchen there bin had about 5 different compartments for different materials so that they could all be disposed of properly or recycled. This is excellent as its not just having that option on your doorstep but actually in your house so you cant forget!
The reason I have such a problem throwing things away is because I see the potential in everything to make something new, to make it in to something else. My friend said the other day Iv got lots of milk bottle tops if you want and I said yeah I'll have them even though I didn’t know what I’d do with them but I knew that I would think of something. My friends have realised that I’m big on recycling and are always offering me rubbish that they know I will appreciate.

I would usually put quite a few things in the bin on a day to day basis because although I would like to I cant keep everything as i don’t have the space or the time as I don't know when I will have time to make all these collected things in to new things.
What I need is the confidence to tell people that they need a bin for this and that and why and make sure they go through with it. It wouldn't be hard for me to say to my boss at the pub I work at that they should have a separate bin for cans but I can just see the screwed up expression now and hear the why? I just find it really hard to chuck things out because all these things shouldn't just be ignored after they've been used for all of three days to package a salad or a toy.

How can we just chuck things away?


Above are my two mind maps for Malcolm Gladwell's book, The Tipping Point. I really enjoyed the book, it had a whole variety of examples of life and people which made it easy to believe the points he was making and the information he was putting across. The life examples Gladwell uses are all completely different which kept me interested and learning all sorts of new things that I didn't expect to be learning. The book is not about design but all the points that are made and now knowing how epidemics are started makes it is easy to transfer this new knowledge in to the area of design.

Friday, 2 October 2009


I have had so many inspiring experiences this week:
-watching Helvetica at the DCA {I didn't fall in love with helvetica though!}
-the Graphics RGB party
-viewing the current exhibition at the DCA
-finding loads of great graphic design sites on Delicious

to be wrote about at a later date :D


I found Proffesor Mike Press' lecture today ruudy great! The lectures title; DESIGN in the age of knowledge, experience, and terror seemed rather boring, but I was happily shocked at how much interesting information, how many inspiring words and the amount of energy that came from one mans mouth. There was barely a moment where I wasn't laughing. There was no time to be bored as I sat and listened eager to hear the next peice of information that was to be said. The amount that was squeezed in to two hours was frankly amazing and really great! It was easy to tell that Mike Press was really passionate and really believed in what he was telling us which give me so much faith in design. I feel really passionate about recycling and working towards a more sustainable world but no one believes that we can turn the world around and save it, apparantly "it's too late!" I can think of millions of great plans and ideas to make things better but I know that it would have to be on a big scale to make any big changes and Id really like to get these plans in to action but it is such a struggle to get people to believe in changing their ways. However after hearing what Jusia Wedgewood did in his time, it made me believe that anything can be done and that YES we should THINK BIG! I want to change the world in a big way with my design and there is no reason why I can't! I learned three very important things today; we don't design things or products, we design the experience that those things give to people, designers shouldn't be afraid to THINK BIG, and the meaning of life haha!Apparantly what we need to do is reinvent our Sigmoid curve at point A, before it gets to point B. This is such good advice and so inspiring! It makes me want to create change all the time and keep my curve going up for as long as possible! CREATE YOUR OWN CHANGE! We need to break out the box of normality... don't think inside the box, think on top of the circle!!
I also think that Design Studies is really good because I'm learning more about the world and the whole world of design instead of just graphics and it makes me happy to think that all my fellow lecture goers are getting to hear all of these inspiring words hopefully injecting some passion in to their bones if its not already there!
Sorry I learned 4 imprtant things today; 4th- ALWAYS check the air flow because if there isn't any air then your pretty buggard!