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canvas student magazine/SPRING issue 2013

Submit your work Each issue we hope to showcase some of your work. If you would like to see your work on the front cover of the next Canvas magazine then send your artwork to

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We received some amazing front cover images by students for this issue. Front & back cover image by James Gulliver. Other submissions included (clockwise from top left): Ben Atkins, Caitlin Peary and Laura Gamble, Georgia Donkin, Mattias Carson, Samantha Booth, Nicola Mitchell, Jack Harris.

An educational charity providing specialist further and higher education programmes in the creative professions

Author Kiran Kaur has enlisted BTEC Extended Diploma in Graphic Design students to bring the characters in her rhyming books, The Draught and Puddle in a Muddle, to life. “The inspiration for my first book all stemmed from telling my daughter ‘don’t let the draught in’ when she was coming in the house,” said Kiran. “She didn’t really understand and was a bit scared about letting in a ‘draught’ as though it were some kind of monster. This gave me an idea so I started to put some thoughts together on paper and produced my first short story about an imaginary mischievous monster dreamt up by a five-year-old girl called Poppy.”

It was only when reading them to a neighbour, who suggested that I post them on the internet, that I got a call from a US publisher, said Kiran. “They were really interested in my copy and after I sent them some more of my work they agreed to publish the first two stories but wanted pictures to accompany the text.” Going online to find someone who could help with her illustrations, Kiran stumbled upon a news story about a CCAD student who’d had their artwork published. “It was great to find CCAD right on my doorstep, bursting with talented young designers, and after meeting lecturer Tom Burton I knew that I’d come to the right place.” With a list of visual and physical characteristics of The Draught and Poppy ten students were set the task of researching and sketching their ideas to be presented to Kiran. “When Kiran got in touch I thought that this would be an excellent live brief for our students,” said CCAD Graphic Design Illustration pathway lecturer Tom.

Illustration lecturer Tom Burton and student Blue Lunn

“The illustration pathway is a brand new course offered to our second year graphic design students. We decided to set the brief as a competition with the winner’s illustrations being used in the final publication and the standard of work that each of the students produced has been phenomenal.” The Draught is set for worldwide distribution this summer with the possibility of an animated series being developed in the future.

“I definitely made the right decision coming to CCAD,” said Kiran. Blue Daisy Lunn and Arron Shepard won the brief competition! Blue will be illustrating the ‘Puddle in a Muddle’ book whilst Arron will be illustrating ‘The Draught’. Illustration student Blue Lunn added: “I am very happy to be picked to have my illustrations published. I am pleased as not many people at my age in their career get the opportunity to have their work seen worldwide. I feel really privileged to have been a part of live briefs such as this one on my course.”

There’s not many upcoming Teesside designers who can list an international pop star among their fans. But having designed jackets worn by Rhianna on one of her tours, Yarm’s Claire Barrow can do just that. The megastar can even be seen wearing one of Claire’s painted jackets on the back cover of her Talk that Talk album. But not one to have her head turned by celebrity acclaim Claire said: “I think you should be recognised more for your talent than who is wearing it.” Just 23, the former Cleveland College of Art & Design student already looks set to be one of fashion’s up and coming names.

Claire has recently been named in the New York Times Blog as one of the London based fashion designers to watch! Spotted by Lulu Kennedy OBE - the creator of Fashion East, a non-profit organisation which allows three new design talents to show at London Fashion Week on schedule - Claire was given her chance to shine.

My ambition is to keep showing at London Fashion Week, doing exciting art and fashion collaborative projects and one day have a retrospective of my work in the Tate or the V&A. Claire, who was a pupil at Conyers School, studied fashion design at CCAD in Middlesbrough before going on to a fouryear sandwich course at the University of Westminster in London. “In my year out I started to paint onto vintage leather jackets to earn a bit of cash while out of work,” she said.

“That has been the most exciting point for me,” she said. Her spring/summer 2013, a collection developed on from the painted leathers, featured in a standstill presentation. While her autumn/winter 2013/2014 collection was included in a catwalk show in the Tate Modern and streamed live on

“On returning to complete my university course, I landed a painted leather line for high end store Joseph which was sold in the flagship store on Sloane Street.”

“I also had the fantastic opportunity to set up the collection in Paris for fashion week in the LONDONshowROOMs which allowed buyers worldwide to see and hopefully buy the collection for stock in their stores,” she said.

She said: “When I got asked to do stuff for Rhianna of course I wanted to do it, but people seem to think it should be something that’s a highlight of my career, but I don’t see it like that.

Her work has featured in leading fashion magazines such as Vogue UK, Vogue Paris, i-D, Dazed and Confused, and Grazia.

Students will showcase their circus skills at the open night of this year’s spectacular circus themed Summer Shows.

Creative students are about to see their ideas turned into reality as part of a specialist scheme that will bring financial know-how to them and their peers. 16 students from 3D Design have put their ideas to paper to design the interior of a new centre in Middlesbrough that will host the Know your Money, Keep the Change (KYM) project in the town. KYM is a new Big Lottery funded initiative that will help young people in Middlesbrough get money savvy and improve their financial confidence, bringing jobs and an innovative new approach to Middlesbrough. As part of the scheme, the 16 students took on the task of designing the inside of the facility and came up with a series of designs with a variety of themes. Their ideas were taken to KYM’s youth panel, which has been tasked with shaping the project, and its members chose ‘urban retro’ as their favourite theme. Steven Burton and Tyrone Jackson then took on the scheme as their final project and their designs will become real life when work starts to fit out the facility. First year students are also designing and making the tables for the new facility.

Tyrone, who is a former pupil of Northfield School, said: “I feel really privileged. Out of all the ideas they could have chosen, they have chosen ours. We understand what the project is about and I would encourage people to use it because it is something that can really help them.” Steven, who is a former pupil of Thornaby Academy, said: “I am really excited to see things turn from our ideas into reality.” Course Leader, Neil McCormack, explained: “This has been a great project for everyone to work on as many students can play a part in the project from producing ideas for focus groups, designing the interior, specifying the furniture and designing and making one off furniture and fitting. It has been an interesting challenge to work on a project of this size and myself and the students have all enjoyed the opportunity and experience the project has offered so far.” “Steven and Tyrone have done everything; site surveys, measuring, scale models, researching furniture and even visiting wholesalers; they have done the entire project as an interior designer would.” Project manager Susan Borrow said: This is a vital project specifically created to help young people across Middlesbrough. Both staff and students from CCAD have worked tirelessly to create designs for the building that are focused on the needs of young people. CCAD has been a fantastic partner which has been a real asset to the development of the project and its premises.

Jonathans Cox’s photographs of passengers departing on Jet 2’s Newcastle to New York flight were chosen as the winning entry for the aviation company’s annual competition! The BTEC Foundation Diploma student was approached to document the transatlantic voyage after representatives from the airline viewed examples of his work online. “I was contacted on Facebook and asked if I would take pictures of one of four special flights to New York which the airline put on once a year,” said Jonathan. “I was asked to bring along my passport and then basically let loose within the Jet 2 terminal to photograph staff, check in, passengers waiting at the departure gates and people boarding the plane.” The New York flight is one of four transatlantic flights commissioned by Jet2 each year from airports in East Midlands, Leeds, Glasgow and Newcastle.

“Being just 18 it’s important that I grab as many career breaks as possible and this was an incredible opportunity to work with such a prestigious client.” said Jonathan.

Airline staff from each region compete to put on the best passenger experience, with check in desks decorated as Central Park, bell boys to help with luggage and bucks fizz on arrival. Photographs from each region are then sent to head office to decide upon the winning airport. “It is great experience all backed up with practical and academic teaching that I get here at CCAD. I’d love to do photography full time and am hoping to go on and do my degree in Commercial Photography at the College’s Hartlepool campus.” CCAD Foundation Diploma lecturer Andrew Edwards added: “Jonathan is so passionate and dedicated about photography and has a real ability to express himself through the camera. “He now has a big client on his portfolio which will make a huge difference to his ability to get additional work and will open up even more opportunities before he graduates.” To see more of Jonathans’ work log on to

A courageous student, who missed out on her education after contracting a flesh eating disease, has realised her ambition of going to university. Aged just 15 Kitty Brame was one of only 2,000 people in Britain to contract Bechets Syndrome, an autoimmune condition causing inflammation to the blood vessels. Kitty Brame, now 17 and studying Graphics here at CCAD, had extensive stays in hospital where doctors battled to diagnose the incredibly rare syndrome.

“For the first time I felt as though I fitted in and even though I still had issues with anxiety and paranoia the tutors couldn’t have been nicer.”

“I’d already missed out on nearly two years of full time schooling when I contracted a DVT aged 12,” said Kitty.

Kitty is now set to graduate from the BTEC Extended Diploma in Graphic Design course and has already been offered a place at Cumbria University.

Specialists from across the UK were contacted and a diagnosis of Bechets was made. Although unable to be cured of the syndrome Kitty now manages her symptoms, which have not flared up again since, and has regular hospital appointments to monitor her condition. Unsure as what to do after leaving school Kitty saw an open day advertised for CCAD and having a friend who already attended the college she came along to see what we had to offer. “Even though I didn’t do art at school, I’ve always loved taking my own photographs and editing them on the computer and the thought of going to a specialist college really appealed to me,” said Kitty. “It was a massive step for me. I was still a bit of a loner and was extremely nervous going out on my own, but as soon as I walked through the doors at CCAD I felt at home.

“I would never have achieved what I have done without the help and support of CCAD,” added Kitty. “My tutor Chris Beadle is the most supportive person, outside of my parents, that I have ever known and he is a massive part of my life. “At first I found it difficult to go into a classroom full of people I didn’t know and he helped me every step of the way. I’ve never had to explain myself to him and he’s given me the confidence to start believing in myself for the first time.”

CCAD Course Leader Diane Watson is going animal crackers after her doggy designs were given the celebrity lick of approval. Worldwide orders for Diane Watson’s Naughty Dog canine cushions have been pouring in after stylist to the stars Gok Wan tweeted his appreciation of Diane’s pet portrait of his French bulldog Dolly. Diane made her first cushion of her brother Stephen’s dog Ollie for a gift two years ago but has now seen her hobby grow into a global business. “It really wasn’t planned to start out as anything big,” said Diane. “When Ollie passed away I thought it would be a nice gesture to make something to remind Stephen of him. “A friend then saw it and wanted one, then they showed it to someone else who wanted one and it sort of snowballed from there. The name Naughty Dog came from Stephen’s second dog Dillon the Saluki who ate my brand new pyjamas.” “I was making about two cushions a month and also selling them through some smaller galleries,” said Diane. “It wasn’t a great money spinner but it was regular work on top of my teaching.” In October 2012, as orders gradually built up, Diane took some of her designs to the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair in Manchester along with some stuffed cloth dogs, canvasses and drawings. “I sold enough that day to pay for my stall, my hotel and for dinner but more importantly I did make some fantastic connections” said Diane.

“I was approached by two ladies from the designer craft website ‘What I always Wanted’ who asked me if I would be interested in selling online with them. “They arranged to do some publicity for me and asked if I would make a cushion with Gok’s dog Dolly on it (pictured top left) so they could send it to him. “I was amazed when he tweeted ‘Wow’ about the cushion to his million and a half followers and since then orders have gone through the roof with people wanting pictures of their own dogs, cats, horses, even pigeons put on cushions. I’ve also done one for the presenter Paul O’Grady with a picture of his Shih Tzu Olga on it. I’ve gone from making two a month to making at least one a day and orders are already piling in for this year. “I’ve got customers from America, Australia, New Zealand and Italy in fact I sent a cushion with two cats on it to a swanky Manhattan apartment last week – my cushions travel to better places than I do.” To see more of Diane’s work log on to:

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Canvas Magazine - Spring 2013  

Student magazine from CCAD