MILLER // PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE
BA HONS ILLUSTRATION Hi! Iâ€™m Briony Miller & this book is intended to tell you about my creative practice, influences, reflection, aspirations and experience during my final year at AUB.
CONTENTS 02 - About 04 - Inspired 06 - Reflection 11 - Other Projects 14 - Fundraising 16 - Silent Auction 18 - Curating 22 - Online 25 - Professional 30 - The Next Step
ABOUT I’m an illustration student whose practice is fuelled by an interest in people and conversation, with a focus on portraiture. I work mainly with pencil; often transferring this into printmaking, as I love the handmade feeling it gives - errors and mishaps adding to the emotive outcome. My drawing style is very delicate, almost still and melancholy showing a feeling in that specific moment. Its very realistic - often from people and sounds around me. I think that I have found a way to illustrate my ideas in a simplistic yet expressive manner that fits the subject of my illustrations. Alongside illustration I also have a keen interest in curating and the production side of the creative arts. I’m not ruling out freelance illustration, because I do enjoy drawing and think I have potential but feel curating and events is more suited to me. I’ve tried to involve this into my third year practice as much as possible, which you’ll find out when you read on!
INSPIRED I am inspired by artists and illustrators as well as fashion, culture, travel, book design and interior design. Im a big David Foldvari fan - which I feel reflects in my work. He uses starck areas of black & white, with a fine line quality similar to that in my work. I look at a lot of portrait artisits for example Egon Schiele who portrays a lot of strong emotions and John Stezaker with his clever use of collage - these both inspire me to produce feelings within my illustrations. In all things that inspire me I take a lot from minimal, modern design; I like blank spaces and simple composition which I think I achieve in my work. Im constantly looking for new areas to explore and inspire me and I think this is a key part of developing practice.
REFLECTION PMP Starting third year was terrifying, realising how much of what I had done previously was irrelevant this was what really counted. I knew from the beginning that I still wanted time to experiment and explore lots of different areas however I think I spent too much of my PMP time trying to refine a new style. I really struggled with drawing when I stepped outside my comfort zone exploring the royal family in a comedic, cartoon manner. Looking back it was a learning curve and I create some successful, fun work, so maybe challenging myself was a good idea but I donâ€™t believe I was being true to style. I discovered when drawing more casually I would always resort back to one style, so knew for my FMP this would be the main feature. However I did really enjoy illustrating on a different media and having a tactile outcome so this is something i would take forward and explore in the future.
FMP This project has been the hardest one yet, due to time and pressure. I struggled for weeks to think of a sufficient idea and went round in circles on what kind of work I wanted to produce. Eventually through critique feedback I settled on fashion style portrait drawings which allowed me to collaborate with a photography student and create a lookbook alongside screenprints. Lack of colour in my work is something I have always struggled with; I love greyscale and a natural pencil lines. However throughout FMP I have explored this much more, finding new ways to input areas of colour digitally, working alongside my illustrations. I used a lot of pattern work in this project and I wanted to translate it onto different platforms. I made wrapping paper and plant pots for example with my textures on which could be sold in the future. This is a key part of practice as a succesfull illustrator would have their work on a variety of products. I think through this project I have furthered my practice, skills and style which I hope to keep doing and continue to grow.
CAROUSEL I exhibited some work in the Carousel exhibition which I actually also curated. I displayed a variety of three A3 black and white portraits from my FMP that I wasnâ€™t very confident about, however I managed to sell some screen prints which gave me a boost! I like these drawings but seeing them printed rather than on screen makes a big difference, so this is something I would take more consideration over in the future.
THE NIGHT IS OURS The Night Is Ours was an exhibition put on in Bournemouth town centre to stimulate ideas regarding gender roles and equality. I was asked to produce some female portraits showing emotion and vulnerability, which would be pasted onto brick walls. Seeing my work in a different context was really rewarding, giving me motivation to be part of more things this term and become more proactive.
SECRET 7” I decided to enter the Secret 7” competition this year at Somerset House, but unfortunately didn’t get chosen to exhibit. I did the brief in a day and decided to do a portrait of the singer. I like the image I created, however looking now at other entries I feel that it wasn’t the style they were looking for. Many other entries were very graphic and more abstract pieces, so perhaps I should have done more research and taken a different route.
FUNDRAISING The Observatory is our London Graduate show. As a group we have to meet and discuss a variety of factors within the show such as name, venue, logo etc. I knew I wanted to play a role in the organisation process, so I decided to help with the fundraising. A group of about four of us ran two club nights at a pub in Bournemouth town centre, involving organization, decorations, advertising, selling tickets etc. I also did the poster and ticket designs for the first night ‘House Party’. It was a long process but we made over £1000. I think this was a major stepping stone in me deciding this area of work is more suited to me, the organising and setting up of an event, but still involved in the art world.
SILENT AUCTION I also ran the organization for our Silent Auction with a fellow student (Philippine) where we made over ÂŁ700. This was a great success but again stressful when trying to get students to submit work in time and get a good crowd of people to attend. We only had a morning to hang and label all the work in time for the auction to open and had to improvise when we realised there were no boards available for use. I definitely underestimated the time it would take and hadnâ€™t really planned much ahead of the day, but we managed to pull it off and learnt lots about organising an event of this kind.
C U R AT I N G After playing a key role in the fundraising I decided this was something I thrived off and wanted to pursue further. I took it upon my self to curate an exhibition ‘Carousel’ for me and 13 other students, as I wanted something more than drawing on my CV. It was really tough organizing the whole thing, I didn’t realize how many elements there were to consider. It taught me a lot about relying on other people and how next time I would do certain things differently. I would set a deadline for work submissions and have more structure on hanging work. Also I would not rely on the gallery to supply boards - but prepare my own. Overall it was a successful exhibition, I got to experiment with hanging styles and positioning work but I still have so much to learn. I think curating this exhibition will give me a step up and help me on the way to finding some work experience in this field.
PICK ME UP I vistied Pick Me Up to gain some insight into contemporary style and how illustrators and collectives are displaying their work. This was to help me with my FMP and ideas for the graduate show as well as ideas for future curating. Everything was very forwards thinking, with really nice new ways of hanging and displaying work in a collective manner. This is something I would like to take on board for the grad show - I hope to have a few small floating shelves displaying my 3D objects. Moth collective used these great frames where the image was floating in glass, surrounded by a simple black frame that I really liked - They got them from Habitat and theyâ€™re really reasonably priced. Going to exhibitions is great for inspiration and fuelling new ideas and I really feel Pick Me Up has inspired me to create an interesting and fun exhibition space at The Observatory.
ONLINE PRESENCE Having a strong online presence is key in this industry so I’ve spent a lot of time building this up in my FMP. Social media is a major part of this and each platform has a slightly different purpose so I wanted to make the most of what each had to offer. I have however chosen to avoid some sites Twitter I find is very topical and changes really quickly, so work wouldn’t stay current for long. I think you would have to update very regularly to keep on top of it and I don’t think I would be that good! TUMBLR Tumblr is used mainly for image sharing but it’s a great visual diary for myself to look back at my work and see how it’s developed, posting ideas and unfinished imagery. It also a great way of keeping track of other artists and illustrators I like and for gaining new inspirations. INSTAGRAM Instagram is another powerful image sharing tool that I personally love and use most. Its great for taking photos of your work in context as well as sharing sketches and prints. The use of hash tags is an incredible device for people to find your work and really helps raise your profile. I find it also inspires me with the wide variety of photos and everyday things that are presented rather than just artwork.
WEBSITE My website is an online portfolio which holds a variety of finished pieces and cohesive work which I would want clients to see. I used Cargo as my host site because I liked its clean and simple themes, which compliment my work style well. Iâ€™ve learnt to use some CSS codes and with this I can customize different things to my taste and to suit my work. Having a website also allows me to connect all my social networks together along with links to a shop and a page which has a description of what myself and what I do.
PROFESSIONAL BUSINESS CARDS & CV Self-promotion is a key element of being a professional and its important to have a self-brand. On my website I have a handwritten title in my type style which I have then transferred through to business cards and my cv in order to keep things consistent. Its simplistic and basic like my drawing style, representing me as an illustrator. I have created two business cards that each has a different image on the back to show a range of work, but keeping the text sides all the same for cohesion. I decided to keep my CV really plain, I donâ€™t think it will be used much within this industry however I know its key to keep it updated. Iâ€™ve outlined some experience in different fields along with adding skills I possess and exhibitions I have been part of.
POTFOLIO Having a print portfolio is great to take to interviews, showing clients your work in a different context to online. Iâ€™ve put in a variety of drawings as well as photos of books I have made - keeping it minimal. I was given advice from tutors to add more colour, especially on the opening page and I think this really made my work pop. My interview with Jenny from Heart agency went really well. I talked her through my portfolio and she liked my work but I also told her about the curating Iâ€™ve been doing and she had a really positive reaction. She said it was clear from talking to me that events was what I was more interested in and she gave me some great advice on where to look for work. She also took my business and card and has put me in contact with a Skull & Heart (a creative company) for some work experience which could be a great opportunity. This experience has taught me to make the most of every opportunity and to definitely get myself out there, meet some people in the arts industry and get involved wherever I can.
THE NEXT STEP The next step is a scary thought but final year has definitely made me see things clearer. I would love to do freelance illustration but I also hope to have a more steady income with an Arts and Events style job. So to help myself get involved in this area I’m going to start looking for internships and work experience. My immediate plans after university will be going back to Portsmouth for a few months. There isn’t a huge art scene there, but are a few galleries so will contact all the ones in the local area. Aspex is a modern up and coming local gallery that would be great for some experience and I know they often give work placements. Portsmouth also has good train connections with London so I may apply for some work further afield when I have some money to fund it. I wouldn’t mind looking for a studio assistant job to get some insight into the workplace or maybe even PR and Marketing could be interesting. I want to keep my options open and am excited to explore some different roles so will apply for a variety of things. Ifyoucouldjobs.com is a great site that posts arts jobs regularly, so will keep checking there for opportunities. Once I can get on my feet I would love to move to Bristol – it’s a lovely place and has an exciting art scene with loads going on! My dream would then be to find a good job role, working with arts events and illustrating freelance on the side. I have no desire at this point to further my education, I have really enjoyed my time at AUB and think I have learnt a lot but all I want to do now is get into the real world and have an industry job!
In terms of freelance illustration, I would love to see my work in magazines â€“ fashion and lifestyle kind of places I think would suit well. I have contacted a few companies with portfolio images and website links that I would love to be featured in â€“ Oh Comely, Frankie Magazine, Wrap as well as some online blog sites. I think it is important for me to keep my online presence fresh and updated for people looking and so I continuously send it out to potential clients.
3031 35 Stokewood Road, Bournemouth, BH3 7ND • 07731718882 • firstname.lastname@example.org www.brionymiller.co.uk A recent Illustration graduate excited to further my skills; I am a hard working and reliable individual hoping to pursue a creative career. I have a keen interest in arts and events, with strong organizational skills and good leadership. This year I curated a successful exhibition at Factory Studios Bournemouth as well as leading a silent auction and 2 fundraisers, raising money for our graduate show in London. Skills Hand rendered & Digital illustration Adobe Photoshop Adobe Illustrator Hand Drawn Type Book Binding Screen Printing Lino Printing Curating Events Organization
Education Southdown’s College Art, Media, Graphics, Sociology Southdown’s College Art Foundation Diploma Arts University Bournemouth BA Hons Illustration
Work Experience AUB - Student Ambassador 2014 - 2015 Academic year As a student ambassador I represent the University in a positive manner, working open days and events with new prospective students. I give tours and show people around as well as helping with workshops and attending careers fairs. Argos - Sales Advisor November 2014 - March 2015 At Argos I worked in the stock room, on Collection Point and tills. I learnt a lot of customer service skills within this job, helping me gain a lot of confidence. This was also the first time working for a large company, teaching me to fit in with their fast, demanding pace and huge teams of staff. Merrox Screen printers - Printing & Embroidery June - September 2014 My main role at Merrox was as an embroiderer; completing garments to a high standard and balancing a heavy workload, however I also helped with garment printing, packing, deliveries and stock checking. Designs Alike - Vinyl printing June 2008 - September 2013 I picked up many skills working at Designs Alike, starting with customer relations, admin and sales. However as trust was built and techniques learnt I became head of the printing department, in charge of all logo designs, vinyl cutting and garment printing. Work Featured 09/07/2015 ‘The Observatory’ - Rag Factory London 13/04/2015 ‘Carousel’ - Factory studios Boscombe (Also curated) 28/02/2015 ’The Night is Ours’ - Bournemouth 01/12/2014 ‘Silent Auction’ - AUB Bournemouth (Also curated collaboratively) References Available on Request
FIND ME WEBSITE www.brionymiller.co.uk EMAIL email@example.com BLOG www.tumblr.com/brionymillerfmp INSTAGRAM @brionymiller PINTEREST www.pinterest.com/brionymiller
BIBLIOGRAPHY All photos taken by me unless specified INSPIRATION John Stezaker - Mask XXXV Heartbeatbox Photography David Foldvari - Portrait The Girl Next Dior - Street Style Egon Schiele - Self Portrait Frankie Magazine - Spread Keith Negley - MFA Thesis Kate Blegvard - Uppers Chris Bayley - Untitled Ener My Attic - Utrecht SILENT AUCTION Photos by Philippine Dâ€™Otreppe CURATING Photos by Nisha Todd PICK ME UP Habitat ONLINE www.tumblr.com.brionymillerfmp www.instagram.com/brionymiller www.brionymiller.co.uk