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Reflective Journal Cornel Ciubotaru

Skills and Knowledge

Awareness of diverse & global range of design culture & languages I understand diverse and global range of design culture and languages because I’ve studied art and design in three different countries. This was a chance for me to explore the needs of three different cultures – noticing both the similarities and differences between them. Consequently, I’ve learned how to apply my own design ideas to specific demographics. Experience of design research, analysis & synthesis I’ve been constantly developing the way I research, analyse and synthesise while studying product design. The first project of the second year is built around research. My major challenge is referring to the research throughout the project. Visualising/prototyping skills & aptitudes in a range of media & formats In my first year I explored the alternation of sketches with models. My sketches draw upon the many still life drawings I did during my architecture & design course. While most tutors consider my sketching original, I still need to improve my ability to work with a wider range of materials. Aptitude in compiling interim & summative design presentations All first year projects ended with an interim & summative design presentation. This helped me gain a better understanding of the impact on an audience. I want to improve the way in which I represent my style through presentations. Aptitude for designing through a digital platform In the last three years I self-studied a variety of digital software. I have a very good understanding of Photoshop because I use it regularly with the drawing tablet. Switching from SketchUp to Maya and finally to SolidWorks I developed an easiness for digital work and aspire to reach a professional level. Knowledge & experience of process, component & production technology For one of the modules last year I had to make a detailed presentation about plastic injection moulding. Although I learned a lot in the process, I still want to further explore the subject.


Project Process

Experience of design process & methodologies My university projects follow the same pattern, but I want to experience other methods as well. Besides the academic work, I hope to get involved in live-projects and placements too. Experience of team leadership & management While I’ve never been a team leader, I often find myself discontent with how team projects evolve so that I have to decide what each individual needs to focus on and assign the roles to them. Experience of costing projects & fee negotiation I have little experience with this aspect. However, each project introduces the problem of price versus quantity and quality. I believe that by starting to work in the industry I will gain a better understanding of the subject. Experience of planning & managing project activity I consider myself very good with planning and managing my projects. Despite leaving the hard work on the last weeks, I have the project planned in my mind at all times. Nevertheless, I want to have even better organisational skills. Experience of managing client relationships & collaboration Although I was involved in a real-life project as part of a module, it didn’t require my full attention or involvement. Nonetheless, I had the experience of collaborating with the client and it made me eager to participating in actual live-projects. Experience of a wide range of project types & scales of innovation I find this aspect very important since it can greatly change the outcome of a design. While my diverse art background gave me the opportunity to work on a wide range of project types, I wish to focus more on those related to product design.

Enterprise & Marketing

Knowledge of design sectors & creative industries At the moment, I have little experience of working in the actual design sectors. Therefore this year, I want to focus on this aspect by ideally getting a work placement which should help me develop a professional manner.


Experience of project procurement & client consultation My understandings in this area is limited, but I expect to gain more knowledge by participating in any design related event, contest or meeting. Also I hope that this notion will be introduced in more detail in one of the modules. Experience in planning continuing professional development My continuous exploration of different software, both 3D and 2D and the combination of personal work with university work, tells me that this is a strong aspect of mine. I am efficient with allocating enough time to develop both of them but want to take it to a professional level. Experience and understanding of legislation & regulations Even though the jobs I had until now, covered the health & safety regulation I still need to be acquainted to those specifically to design issues. Again I expect this to happen when I start working in the industry. Experience of design budgets & account management Only one of the modules vaguely covered this aspect, therefore I have yet to understand its application on a real life basis. Although it doesn’t particularly interest me, I think it’s necessary to have a certain level of understanding about it. Experience of design practice marketing & promotion Every project challenges me to better promote myself and my work. While I need more experience with design practice marketing I feel I am going in the right direction particularly because this year I have a module ‘Developing Professional Practice for 3D Design’ that encourages me to self-promote and market myself.

Values & Vision

Understanding & practice of ethical business standards I am theoretically informed of the ethical standards different companies have but I don’t have any practical experience and I wish to change that. Subscription to policies & standards of ethical design My first project this year develops policies and standards of ethical design more seriously since it is a project aimed to a certain demographic. I am committed to learn how to improve this more professionally since I believe it is a requirement in the contemporary design world.


Commitment to understanding of the imperative of professional practice Every academic module has incorporated the notion of ‘commitment to understanding of the imperative of professional practice’. While this process is very important to my personal development I do feel it does require more attention on my behalf. Awareness & appreciation of key design futures & innovation trends I have a great appreciation for key design futures and innovation trends. Therefore I follow different design brands and some acclaimed artists (Zaha Hadid, Dave Rapoza) who are not necessarily product designers. I know that this can influence my career greatly and I always keep my eyes open for new inspiring artist or practices. Commitment to the advancement of design knowledge, expertise & value By following different websites with design centred domains and by actively working in this area, I believe I am constantly developing my understanding of design expertise and value as well as my knowledge of design. Awareness & practice of user centred design The last module during my first year was ‘User Centred Design’. I had to improve a welldesigned already existing product which made it challenging and exciting, therefore allowing me to learn more.

Reflective journal  

Cornel Ciubotaru reflective writing

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