Thursday, 19 November 2009
It has been a great week for the Transatlantic Design project. We were in the CETLD newsletter and were asked to do two talks. One for the CETLD department where we held our won for a whole hour we were so scared to do this and wondered whether we were going to be able to talk for that long, but in hindsight I have no idea why we were worried, for a start we can all talk for england and also our project is so strong it almost speaks for itself. We also were invited to speak in a level two Product Design talk by Chris Rose a great lecturer who we had actually interviewed in New York. Both went down really well and it felt great to talk about such a successful project, It was even suggested we publish a book, I never thought we could do something like this but it showed me we can I think we all feel very proud.
Tuesday, 10 November 2009
Sunday, 4 October 2009
Friday the 2nd of October and phase two of our research project begins. We were all very excited to get back to our project and talk to some more people about their design education and we could not fail to be enthused and excited by talking to Alex and Will. Having studied Illustration and Graphic Design at Brighton University they are now both working together in a studio in trendy Shoreditch. They are doing extremely well with their blog: 'It's Nice That', magazine no.2 (just launched) and a new series of: 'If you could' on the way. Both lovely people, it is easy to see how these young entrepreneurs have managed to move in the right circles and why many designers hold them in high esteem. We met them earlier in the year when talking at the D&AD lectures with Ian Wright and decided they were in our 'must interview' category. Kindly they made time for us and an interesting and honest interview followed. They chatted casually about their design education, offered interesting views and opinions, gave great advice and witty one liners and then we all went to the pub for a pint. We look forward to sharing with you more about this interview soon.
Tuesday, 22 September 2009
BBC Two: every monday at 9pm
Thursday, 10 September 2009
Sunday, 6 September 2009
Monday, 24 August 2009
David was himself a graduate in architecture at Cooper Union and he now lectures at the school. It was interesting to discuss design education within the building that David himself has had such a close and long history with, having spent over half his life there. David considered the building itself as a space that was engineered for the right creative environment and as a place for the three creative disciplines of: Engineering, Architecture and Art to collide within. David began his talk with us, with his theory of Cooper Union as the 'eight story house'. He took us on a tour of the school which began in the foundations of the building where there was a great lecture space, where Abraham Lincoln had spoken and many other notable orators. David proposed that this gave the school a foundation in free speech, that filters up the school. He describes how all creative energies flow upwards through the space and the negative impact of walking down into a dark dingy basement is never felt, as it maybe in other institutions. We then walked up to the second floor where knowledge and context were realised with a library that looked outwards through vast glass windows. This was designed to allow an infinite plane of cultural memory and a preservation of history. Then at the heart of the building was a shared working environment where a gallery forces the intrigued into the belly of the school. These analogies between architectural design and their application within education was very interesting and was consistent with David's predominant influence and point of reference: Literature. In this instance the school itself was an instrument capable of telling a story.
We also discussed the implications of the small numbers of students at Cooper Union and the fact that they were all there with a full scholarship. He described his development and use of the 'listening crit' and showed us a project he had been working on extensively to be published by Didot.
David is an extremely intelligent man who's fervour and philosophies are reflected within the course he teaches and upon the space he lectures in.
I look forward to relaying more of what I learnt from David to you in the future.
Sunday, 2 August 2009
Georgie G at legs was amazing showing us around this beautiful studio and also talking for us. This is a fairly new studio and its main area is film, its a unique place where they have everything they need on site therefore the design ideas do not need to be diluted as they can do it all, its really inspirational to see how that can be a reality. She was so passionate and was also able to try many areas and work with amazing people. The studio has aspirations to break international boundaries and I wish them good luck and thank you.
Hunter Tura recieved a degree in Architecture from Havard and now is the managing director at 2x4 which is a multidisciplinary studio focusing on design for art, architecture, fashion and cultural clients worldwide. He had a really interesting slant for our project where by he sees many portfolios from a number of different areas and places wanting jobs or interns at 2x4 and therefore has a certain idea of design inside and outside the US. He was extremely welcoming, he had his little girl at work and always had one eye on her checking she was ok it was lovely, yet he still had all his attention for us. Conversation seemed so easy yet so interesting, he expressed how his education in architecture led him to have a different sort of education however he has no regrets as there are skills he has learnt that he may only have got from his education. Also 2x4 is a multidisciplinary studio and therefore needs people with a variety of skills and maybe by having a broader design education it will enable us to have a better perspective of design, and maybe using design inspiration for a piece of design is not the best way to do it? He opened up a number of questions for us so thank you. He also then introduced us to Yoonjai Choi who was newer in 2x4, she too had had an unusual education, she had grown up outside of the US and had strong attachments to England where she had spent some years growing up, after she completed her degree she wanted more education and it was either the RCA or Yale and it eventually was Yale and she said shes so glad it worked out that way as more then anything its the peer group you learn around that enhances who you are and she had an amazing graduate class and has no doubt that it was them that has helped her get to where she is today. Both had really great insights and are at a brilliant studio so thank you and good luck to you both.
Pablo grew up between Washington and New Jersey and is the founder of Cubanica, he is an exceptionally talented designer and typographer you can check out some of his typefaces here. He had just got off a 10 hour flight from Buenos Aries and Claire and I were literally waiting outside his door before we had even got there, he had sort of forgotten but was so pleased that fate or something had meant we were there waiting for him the moment he arrived home, he let us in his house and within minutes had changed and got ready and took us for the most amazing hot chocolate and Coffee either of us had ever had, the decoration on top was beautiful and as designers led us all off onto a tangent for a while. He expressed how his role as a lecturer at Pratt and also at an affiliate school gave him a great insight into design and that further his visit to Buenos Aries had all given him a fresh outlook on our project. He seemed to feel like students in the US worked really hard but they also expected a lot from their lecturers, then his experience in Buenos Aries was more of a street scene it was more free and in a way exciting. Really it is down to the individual to succeed and a great student will be great anywhere as long as they have the drive to do well. He had a fine art background and expressed how that has definitely had a huge imact on the way he works and that he will always fight for students to have a more "hands on approach" how can you learn anything unless you can do it by hand? This is exactly what Milton Glaser had said and its a very valuable point - by seeing something you simply see it but by drawing it you analyse and learn to appreciate it. Computers and the hand need to be used together and neither one or the other can replace each-other. Although he must have felt exhausted Pablo never slowed down, his enthusiasm for our project was great to hear and he even then came to lunch with us with Ian Wright and Ritta Ikonen. I cant wait to transcribe this interview and reveal more - so look out, Thank you Pablo and good luck in your travels.
Everyone in the design world and many people not even in that field will have heard of the name "Milton Glaser" he is among the most celebrated graphic designer in the united states. "The founder of Push Pin design in 1954 was his first big step in the design world, their design was well received internationally. He then in 1968 along with Felker they founded the New York Magazine, then in 1983 Milton was part of WBMG a publication design firm and now its Milton inc. This man seems unstoppable, he still had such enthusiasm for the design field which could have easily been lost in todays day and age of the computer "making everyone a designer". He expressed how a computer is like a microwave to cooking" and also that Talent was only going to go as far as you were willing to push it. He was very wise and I feel we all felt very nervous when we first went to talk to him, however we sat around in a smallish room full of beautiful artifacts and pieces of his design, it felt homely yet inspiring. He sat down and just began listening carefully and then answering concisely our questions. One of the most memorable things he said was that it is important to listen to others but really his opinion was only really relevant to him and therefore people need to learn their own views and opinions - if you were to live your life in agreement with someone else you would really just be living their life. It was very interesting to here from such an influential man but important to remember. Thank you.
Saturday, 18 July 2009
Thursday, 16 July 2009
Another great interview in the afternoon which we were all lucky enough to be able to attend. We met with Graphic Havoc a design studio based in Brooklyn compiled of five members and we were lucky enough to speak with Randall Lane, Derek Lerner, David Merten and Peter Rentz. I have to admit we were all a little nervous to meet with a studio whose work we know and admire but they were all really great and put us at ease immediately and from then on conversation seemed to just flow. They had not all initially received a design education however expressed how by having a more open path of education it allowed for a more rounded person. Derek liked how he could effectively build his own degree by picking the classes he most preferred at Georgia Tech, Atlanta. They all agreed on the cultural diversity that New York gave them which even if after a time can be taken for granted is definitely a plus point to the design world. Randall was adamant that school was a time for play and experimenting, and they all showed a fondness and respect for British design explaining how maybe designers takes more risks as well as it having a deep design history that inevitably has an influence on its design scene. Lastly in response to "what's the most important thing you know and where did you learn it?" Peter believed it was all about making mistakes and learning from them and along with Derek's thoughts that if you set your heart and mind to something then you can achieve it we feel that that is pretty great advice. Thank you very much guys.
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
We went to the Bodies exhibition today in Sea Port. I think we all left more uneasy than enlightened. It certainly wasn't what I was expecting, although it was fascinating.
Tuesday, 14 July 2009
Michael Bierut was born in Cleveland, Ohio and studied graphic design at the University of Cincinnati's College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning. Prior to joining Pentagram as a partner in 1990, he was vice president of graphic design at Vignelli Associates. He is also an active member of the AIGA an was president of the New York Chapter from 1988-1990.
While we were at RISD Chris Rose was kind enough to introduce us to a couple other members of staff including Paul Sproll. He was a really interesting guy to interview as he was British born and bred however after his degree at Corsham he then took a year long fulbright Teacher Exchange. This experience in the USA then led him to take further art education in the US. He now has a PHD from Ohio State and is head of department at RISD in a program quite unusual - teaching and learning in and through the arts in schools, museums and community settings. So one of his main focus' is Education. He expressed how teachers needed to be practicing in their fields as well as teaching, even though that can be difficult. He says teaching in art education cannot just be theoretical students need to meet people and that needs funding so possibly in the US that is where private schools benefit. Therefore by being government led maybe schools in the UK have more restrictions and the US has a much more "malleable hierarchy"? To end he talked about how the most important thing he knows is that "anything is possible" a lovely note to end on an extremely interesting interview. Thank you.
Thank you to Chris Rose and his Wife Christine . They put Chloe and I up for a night and gave us a beautiful day in Rhode Island. The RISD School of Art is an impressive school with many influential people at the helm of it. It has a nature lab as well as an amazing museum. It is a school I could only dream of attending. Chris is an extremely intelligent man who has brought new ideas and questions to this project so a huge thank you to him and his kindness towards us.