GamSweN ISSUE 1
University of Greenwich
12 weeks of informative lectures, recorded in a GAMSWEN magazine just for you!
Learn things you have never known, get inspired by other artistâ€™s work and take advice from these lecturers.
Hello GAMSWEN readers My name is Neriman Sensev. I am the editor and author of this GAMSWEN magazine. I am currently studying Graphic design at the University of Greenwich. Vaughan Oliver, Neil Spiller, Nic Clear, Stacey Pitsillides, Rachel Armstrong, Simon Herron and Mark Ingham, do any of these names sound familiar? Well, if not then they will do after you have a read of my magazine. All of these people are either artists, architects, teachers or lecturers and have been giving design students lectures about their own work, at the University of Greenwich. This magazine is about all of the lectures that I have had over a 12 week period. I will be talking about what we have learnt about the lecturers work, all the extra research that I have done that has a relevance with the topics the lecturers have spoken about and other artists work from the past and present.
Our brief was to create a series of writings for each lecture of a minimum of three hundred words each. We had to choose one lecture that we really liked and write a minimum of one thousand five hundred words. My main article will be on â€˜Vaughan Oliverâ€™. In conclusion we will have a greater knowledge of the history of Art and design and understand the main concept and medium behind visual communication. We will also be able to analyse and evaluate information in a successful way, by also promoting it in whatever way we want to. My choice has been to design an online magazine, which can be accessed much easier, on laptops, pcs and mobile phones. We now live in a world where everything can be accessed on the internet. I hope you enjoy my writing and learn a lot of interesting facts about different artists and their work, and find some inspiration for your own design projects.
CONTENTS Introduction to brief- Mark Ingham
Stacey Pitsillides - Digital Death
Mark Ingham - What we have learnt so far
Mark Ingham - Manifestos
Mark Ingham - Animated robots
Simon Herron - Drawing
Neil Spiller - Ornamental Savagery
Mark Ingham - Last lecture
Introduction to Brief Mark Ingham On the 11/01/11, we had our first Art & Design in context lecture with Mark Ingham. We were introduced to our new brief and shown a short film. For our project we have to make a film/animation, blog, newspaper or magazine about all the lectures that we will be having about the history of Art and Design. Every week we will be taught about a new thing, talk to and meet professionals in the graphic design industry, and learn about the full history of designers. We will have to take notes of this in all the lectures and then write a minimum of 300 words as an article or a one minute long film/clip each week. I think it is best to record all this information for the article straight after the lecture because then the information will be fresh in your mind and you will not forget important things. In each of our articles we can use other research that we have looked at to develop our knowledge in the subject more, however we will need to provide proof of where we got the information from, such as a book, website, magazine etc.
On the other hand, we will have to make a â€˜featured articleâ€™ for one of the lectures that we would like to choose and write a minimum of 1500 words or a 10 minute long film/clip. The style of the final piece is totally up to us, however I personally think it would make sense to make the article have a connection with the subject matter, so the style should have relevance with the style of the work that I will be talking about. I think this project will be very useful for all of us, because as Graphic design students we need to have a good understanding of the history of art and design, and how art and design had come into this world, how it influenced people, how it became an important factor in so many peopleâ€™s lives, how it got so big that it has become a way of earning income and lastly how designers have done all of these things successfully to be recognised in the industry. I believe that everything that we are about to learn in these lectures are like life changing tips and advice for us to get ourselves and our work heard in this industry, so I am looking forward to learning a lot!
Neil Spiller On the 25/01/12 we had a lecture with Neil Spiller. He started talking about a project that he called “Communicating vessels”, he had taken the name from Andre Breton’s book. His project talks about the technology in Architecture. For twelve years he has done one theory, because he is very interested in long architectural projects that take more than the average few months. Spiller said that we will have a ‘surrealist lecture’. Neil Spiller’s favourite philosopher is Zodiac Mindwarp, he finds his quotes wonderful. Spiller’s project took place in an island called Fawn, next to Canterbury Kent, which was where he was brought up. Neil Spiller then talks about all the processes he has gone through to get to his final project. He started to talk about Lillif. In 1996 Salvador Dali made the Lillif Brendan Russell sculpture. Salvador Dali was a novelist, and he had his sculpture on his bedside table when he had passed away. Lillif is also the bad witch-like woman in Frasia TV series and the witch in ‘The Lion, the witch and the wardrobe’. Lillif religiously was Adam’s first wife, and Neil Spiller said they split up because Lillif wanted to be on top when they were making love to each other. She wanted to show that men and women were both equal. Neil Spiller then started to talk about the theory behind modernism and architecture. He said “we are all the same – no we are not, it’s the celebration of our differences. A lot of people use technology badly, but it can look nice when you invent technology, but you also invent disaster. A plane equals a plane crash.”
work is called ‘Little Machinery’ which was taken from a crucial book wrote by Mary Little in 1926 aimed towards children, a modernist book not about fairies and angels, but about living in a junkyard. “One key for architects nowadays is how dumb to make things not how smart”, Neil Spiller said. He also went onto talking about vistas, and how all vistas have to have a sculpture. Another piece of his work is called ‘Temple of Repose’. For this specific piece of work he got the movements of a bee, by attaching an aerial to its forehead. He also got the DNA genetics of certain creatures for his work. Spiller gave us a long definition of a sychopheric object, he said “blindfold a surrealist, give him a camera, let him touch an object he doesn’t know, take a photo, take the object and cover it with metal, and then let it melt from the heat, this is a sycopheric object”. Neil Spiller ended his lecture by saying “Imagination is a wonderful thing, sometimes it can scare people”. I really learnt a lot from Neil Spiller’s work, even though I was not that familiar with his working methods and sometimes confused about what he was talking about. I like designers that are different, and one thing that stands out about Neil Spiller is that he uses a lot of his inspirations from other people’s work and puts it back into his own work. This is something that I should do more often and notice that designers as successful as Spiller even at this stage in his career still uses ideas from other people.
Spiller then talked about a sculpture that was built in Rome in 1622 – 1625 called Apollo and Daphne. It was a story about Apollo chasing Daphne for love, and Daphne turning into a tree because she doesn’t want his love. One of Spiller’s piece of work was called ‘Little soft machinery’, which shows the effects of bio-technology. It talks about the perils of biotechnology and how the owl is a symbol of the devil, which shows a bad vision. Another piece of his
Vaughan Oliver On the 18/01/12 we had our second lecture and were told we had to have D.A.N.C.E in all of our pieces of writing. Even though writing should have rhythm, flow and an energising spirit to it D.A.N.C.E is not necessarily that. D.A.N.C.E is a shortened version of five words, which are, Describe, Analyse, Narrative, Contextualise and Evaluate. Quite simply what all this means starting in order is describe what you are going to write about, how it happened and what the subject of your article is. You then analyse what the subject of the article is about and also involve other peopleâ€™s ideas on the subject. Then you start to narrate/tell your story in a capturing way. Afterwards you contextualise the subject matter of your article and find out how it fits in to other historical/political/ social contexts and then finally you evaluate what you have written about in your article and what you have mainly learnt by making this article. At the lecture Vaughan Oliver, a graphic designer/ typographer presented his life, career and work to us. His work was very inspirational and very interesting for the fact that every single piece of work he had created had an inspiration behind it. Vaughan Oliver was born 1957 and is a British graphic designer, who is based in Epsom, in south London. He has worked for graphic design, typography and motion graphics for thirty years. One of his huge inspirations was Salvador Dali and even though graphic design is a huge love in his life he also shared this with something else, which was Music. I really loved it when he said this because I too have a love for Art & Design as
well as Music because I believe they are both are a piece of art, an instrument for people and a voice, so they are both very connected! Since the age of three I have always loved to draw and hand make things just for the fun of it. At the same time, music has always been a very important part of my life. I believe that a world without music would be soul less. With music you can relate yourself to it in any way, and make it personal to yourself. You can also relate it to any mood you are in, if you want to jump up in the sky and go crazy, and have a laugh, then you would listen to something that is loud and upbeat. However if you wanted to have a big cry and were upset about something, and wanted to let everything out, you would listen to a piece of music that was slow paced and teary. The same with drawing, is that you could express your mood with it, if you were angry you would decide to use very dark, bold colours. You would use rough and large brush strokes, and the visual would look quite rushed, confused, overlapping and angry. If you were extremely high spirited and in a happy mood, you would decide to use vibrant, summery colours and use fine, detailed brush strokes. The visual would look perfected or flowing, also depending on your style of drawing, but it would definitely have that expression of freedom and peacefulness within the overall composition and layout. This is why I feel as if music and art are very connected. Vaughan Oliver was also talking about the 19th Century, and how young people were making their own bands, which led to independent record companies. For Oliver the definition of independence was â€œphilosophy, something which was different to mainstreamâ€?. At the time of the 19th century Oliver was working for a record company, where he was designing things like logos. That company had employed their first employee, because the boss and Oliver shared the same old fashioned values, which was that they both had a lot of attention to detail. Oliver had specifically said that the way he works is by recontextualisation, which means ripping stuff out and giving it a new meaning. He said that in the 19th century fashion and lifestyle magazines were the main source of media that inspired and influenced designers. Vaughan Oliver always wanted to become a record sleeve designer and he had started to first
GamSweN design for a band called Cocktail twins. They were a band, who was inspired by all genres of music, they tended to distort their lyrics with emotion and passion, and therefore their words were not understandable. As a teenager studying in college Oliver stated that he had hated typography, but of course he had to still learn it because without type a message cannot be portrayed. For the Cocktail twins Oliver used hand drawn typography, to connect it with the soft, flowing image made of paint and water. When Oliver designs music sleeves he talks straight to the band members and asks them directly what they want. One thing that Oliver said which I really loved was that “if you copy other artists work to be on trend it is CRAP because you cannot show your own style.” This is something that I always say as well, because I always say it is alright to have an inspiration from another designer, but then again it is hard to stop yourself from copying because it prevents you from coming up with an idea, therefore I always say your ideas should come first then the inspiration! Of course everyone works in a different way, some prefer to do a lot of research and then decides on their ideas, and some may already have some research that they know of, decide to come up with their idea and then start to deeply research so that they can develop their idea further. Both ways I’d say work the same, and it is the designer who knows best how they work. Of course a designer will not know how they best work at first, without trying both ways, but eventually one way will seem easier for the designer, seeing which way has led them to be more successful with their visual work. Oliver also said that companies nowadays are re selling old designs, I think this is because they want something new and new does not mean modern it can also mean old styles being brought back in a unique style. I think this is quite interesting to know, because this is not just happening with the art and design culture it is also happening with fashion for an example. A lot of clothing lines are re launching the 90’s fashion styles. I also think that nowadays because everything is being done on the computers and everything is becoming so much more easier to design, because we have all these different softwares, the ability to come up with fresh, new and non-existing ideas is becoming more difficult, and the main reason for this is because a lot of design work is looking all the same! Differentiation is not that common anymore, and a lot of employers nowadays are actually starting to look for designers that design traditionally. When I say traditionally I mean by hand, with drawings, with sculpting, with hand crafting, with painting etc. Vaughan Oliver has designed music sleeves for
another two bands called, Throwing Musers and Contributors of sins. He has also designed for an American film maker called David Lynch. When he wants to use typography in his work, he hires a photographer and just uses photographs, no layers in special software such as in Photoshop is used. Oliver has said that the back and front of a sleeve need to have a relation with one another to tell a narrative. Two tools which he uses are ambiguity and misery! Vaughan Oliver said “you can be struck by an image but not get it, but that idea will last longer with you than with something you do understand,” which is very true, so tricky and confusing can question a reader and make them want to unsolved the puzzle. He also said “inspiration comes from everywhere, it can be right next to you, you do not need to go out miles searching for it” which I also agree with.You can find inspiration from a film you have just watched, or a piece of writing you have read from a magazine, or a book, or you can be inspired from a music video, a program, or even from just walking down the streets and finding inspiration from strangers, or their
actions, or from your environment, depending on what you want to design. Oliver also designed music sleeves for a girl band called The breeders. For the photography he used coloured paper and took photos with a Polaroid. With that he used geometric typography, which was inspired by Japanese typography. I have really enoyed learning about Vaughan Oliver’s work and he has inspired me to not be afraid to take risks and play with typography to make it fit with an image. He has also shown me how powerful a design can be with just the simple use of very high quality photography and type. He does this effectively because he knows that the style of the
should not see yourself as students, because you are only a couple of clicks away from producing work that will have an international audience.
On the 01/02/12 we had a lecture with Nic Clear. He teaches architecture design and runs one of the postgraduate diploma units. He has taught at the school of Architecture in University of London. His main interest is using film and animation in the development and representation of architectural ideas and architectural practises. In this lecture he said he would be talking about two specific aspects of the use of animation, and how and why he has developed it within architecture. He said that just ONE aspect of architecture is the production of a building and that he is a qualified professional architect, has worked in architectural offices and run his own company and he has known how to do the ONE aspect, but that is only one part of architecture. The architectural profession he believes is still a new thing, and is only 100/200 years old. He believes that architecture has to be broadened with digital space, virtual space and authenticated spaces.
Architecture had firstly started off as very graphical, where architects were drawing their ideas, but now because of the technology a lot of the designs are now moved onto softwares. However he went onto talking about the importance of drawing and how drawing had been first produced. A book called ‘Translations from drawing to building and other essays’, has an essay in it called ‘translations from drawings to buildings’, by Robin Evans, which has a story in it developed by a Roman philosopher called Plimmy, about how drawing as an activity was developed. It talks about this young Roman woman called Dibutarbism, whose lover was going away to sea or war, and so she wanted to produce a likeness of him, so traced his face on a rock. How this relates to architecture is the fact that for an architect drawing is so instrumental in terms of the architecture, that we couldn’t have architecture before the drawing, because we would not be able to visualise our ideas.
Neil Spiller then started to talk about the famous Swiss Re building. He said that a lot of people think that Norman
Foster has built the building, but it was actually developed by one of Foster’s teams run by a guy called Ken Shuttleworth, who has left Foster’s to sell his own coffee, and the authorship of this building was one of the reasons why he had left the team, because Norman would credit himself for the work of the building. He said that he tells all his students that getting your work out into the world needs practise, and that you
Nic Clear then went onto showing us a lot of digital videos. One video that caught my eye was ‘Augmented ventual hyper reality’, which shows how the media is taking control of everything that we do and brainwashes us into doing things the way they portray to be the right way. Even making a cup of tea may be hyper reality! Another video that caught my eye was called ‘Robots of Brixton’. This film was criticised by a lot people who said “this isn’t architecture it’s a bloody film”. Neil’s student who had made this film, called him one day before the London riots, and said “history repeats itself”. It was as if he knew what was going to happen, his video shows post effects of the 1981 riots and how it lead to these riots. Overall I really enjoyed the whole lecture, because the videos kept the whole audience engaged, which shows that digital media does actually affect us, the new generation. I really loved the fact that Spiller said that architecture could not have been produced without drawing, and I believe this is true even for Graphic design. Drawing has always been my first love since I was a kid, and is what has directed me into wanting to be a Graphic designer. Drawing for me has always been like a voice, where the canvas is a surface where I can freely express my feelings and emotions.
Digital death On the 08/02/12 we had a lecture with Stacey Pitsillides, who is one of our tutors at University of Greenwich. She talked to us about ‘Digital death’ and said that it was a passion of hers and an interest, it is something she focuses on outside her hours of working time, and she does a lot of conferences, organises debates, has participated in various design exhibitions and has been writing on this topic. Stacey showed us some videos of a project she had done in her final year of her BA called ‘Rest in pixels’, which again talks about digital death and what happens to your personal data online. Stacey then went onto talking about, what it is that makes up everything about us and how we collect things. She also talked about how we live through technology, not with technology. A lot of people have got their mobile phones on for 24 hours a day and is the first thing they see in the morning when they wake up, and the last thing they see when they go to sleep, including myself. Every tool we use changes who we are as human beings. Katherine Malibu has reflected that technology is changing the way we think, and changing our brains, and how great of an impact technology has on our lives. Stacey then went onto talking about social networks and how they have become this iceberg underneath us. She gives an example saying, ‘for an example if you take a photograph from your camera of other people, you own it because you took it and it is from your camera, even though the subject is of other people in the photo. Then you go and upload it onto facebook, do you own it anymore, or is it a part of facebooks ownership and the people that also see it? However when you die, the photo still stays on the system and then it becomes the ownership of the remainder of people on facebook and your children’s and loved ones property as they inherit it. Then it moves onto becoming your ancestor’s photo, and they remember you as somebody who was part of their family. Then if you move further down, where you are not even recognised or known anymore, it becomes a photo of the past. Then this photo becomes one of three things, lost, rubbish or history!’ Stacey then talks about the idea of digital technology not limiting us to how much we can store, we can store millions of photos, make millions of tweets, and it becomes such an enormous archive! It is not like archives that we collect at home for an example, because we are limited to how much we can keep, because of space. So even things like clothes which do not fit us anymore, or old photographs, or possessions, we end up throwing them away, or giving them to
GamSweN someone. Stacey said “remember all the social networks are corporate companies, they have the interest of their company at heart, so when you engage with that system, you do not just engage with the terms and conditions when signing up for an account, but their terms and conditions for the coming years and you have no idea of the ethics or movements behind those companies. Are these really the places you want your memories to be kept, or is it just a place where it has your community?” Stacey gave us a definition of digital death and said
digital death can be seen as either the death of a living being and the way it affects the digital world or the death of a digital object and the way it affects a living being.” A good example of a digital object dying would be a pc/laptop breaking down and you losing all your data and memories, this can affect you a lot. Stacey also talked about how to find someone in an archive, and not necessarily someone that has died, it may be someone that has left you or someone who has moved to another country. A photograph is a tool of memory and it captures moments for you, where you can actually find someone. However whilst still being in this world, these archives of yourself, are they really a true representation of you? Is it the way you really are or is it false, and also if it is you, will it still be you in say 10 years time. I felt a real bond towards this subject, because it is something that a lot of people do not realise, and every single person has got at least one source of information about themselves online. The idea of digital death and what happens to all of your data once you have died, and who has access to it and where it gets taken from there is an extremely important thing to think about and plan before you die. However you may not really care what happens to your data, because you have died and are not a part of this world anymore, you may think what can people really do with your data? Is this true? People may use your data in a way which you do not like or re use your data without your permission and give a false portrayal of you. So you should consider whether these social network sites are really protecting your privacy.
Rachel Armstrong On the 15/02/12 we had a lecture from Rachel Armstrong. Armstrong is not an architect, and her brain is not in humanities, she had originally started off as a medical doctor, because as a child she was very interested in biology. She spent hours in the mud, doing everything to it such as eating and feeling it and realised that there was something in the natural world that had a capability of creating form and function. Because of this Armstrong was very interested in designing with things that were not inert but alive. Armstrong said that she could not do what we call ‘synthetic biology’ when she was in university. For Armstrong medicine was the only thing she could study that engaged with the design and engineering of living things. Armstrong said that the one time that changed her view was when she was working in a Leprosy hospital in India, and the one thing that had struck her was that the people had been changed by their illness. Leprosy is a disease that is very challenging to live with, and very hard to cure, because it is like there is a cling film around the disease stopping any drugs from getting to it. The disease works from the outside then in and eats away at the body, especially the nerves. The first sign is depigmentation of the skin, and if t h e
disease is at this first stage, it is very easy to cure the disease with a whole load of drugs. Once this disease gets inside of the body you cannot feel anything, because it eats away at the nerves, so you have a loss of engagement with the world. This then leads onto destruction of the body, because the disease starts to eat your cartilage and you lose your top palette of teeth and gums, and also the cartilage in your nose. You also lose the ability to blink, so you eventually become blind.
What really struck Armstrong whilst working at this hospital was that the people with Leprosy were restoring their humanity by working with technology, such as using moulds in the top of their mouths. This made her think that ‘the body wasn’t a machine, having a technological appendage did not make you more machine like, it made the appendage more human’. This made her question the fact that technology doesn’t control us, we control technology and make it more human and natural. Armstrong said “humans have always damaged their environment, all cultures and religions, and this is because we all think so similarly and over think and therefore miss out everything from the natural world.” In science we read the world through mathematics and so we can miss stuff out. This is because we read through a mathematical law and nature is not like that, it hasn’t got laws, it can surprise us! Surrealists have actually tried reading the world not with their rational minds but with the subconscious brain with automatic writing and dreaming. Rachel Armstrong wants to give an alternative to digital platform, because she thinks computers do not know how to deal with the unknown, therefore lacks context and meaning, however humanity are able to describe meaning to things. She said that we humans are not a single object we are an assemblage, which is a group of cooperating things. Armstrong then went onto explaining how things are made or evolved. She believes that evolution hasn’t got an actual definition, and it is just a change over time. Richard Dawkins a biologist has popularised the idea of genes, and his belief that all the information we will ever use in our life is already in our body now, a bit of tweaking here and there but your fate is determined by the genes you have inherited. Rachel Armstrong thinks this is very reductionist and it erases any idea of free will. She totally rejects the idea that you have a fate that you can never escape and believes that ethically we have to have choice. Armstrong wants there to be another type of technology invented, that protects environment sensitivity. Architecture is the technology of human evolution and if environments are affecting us we do not live in nature, we live in architecture. Rachel Armstrong’s ideas have really inspired me, because I myself am extremely inspired with nature, and have always loved natural things such as flowers, trees and the ocean. I believe that the world we live in now has technology everywhere and for this specific reason everything is looking the same. Architects are taking up natural land with buildings. Of course we do need buildings, but do we really need as much as we have nowadays. I think if we carry on like this, our natural resources will be extremely limited and we will be getting rid of the beautiful nature of this earth with manmade machines. I personally think this gives the world a dull and monotone atmosphere to it, we need to fight for our nature.
Mark Ingham What we have learnt so far
On the 22/02/12 we had a lecture from Mark Ingham about ‘What we have learnt so far’. Mark asked us a series of questions that we had to think about during the lecture and answer them. One of the first questions was “How best do we learn?” My answer to this is “Every person learns differently, but one must is to have knowledge about what you are learning. Without the knowledge you can’t learn anything, so thorough research into your subject should definitely be done”.
softwares required such as Photoshop/Indesign by practise, but not everyone can solve problems and think of a conclusion, outcome or solution to a question or problem. The second required skill is ‘Collaboration across networks and leading by influence’. It is very important and crucial to have a connection with not just a small team of people in a room, but with everyone around the world. This is how you will promote yourself and your work as well as finding the best people to work with.
Mark then spoke about how to make a successful introduction to your blog. One key is to draw the reader into your writing and attract their attention to read on. Before introducing the lecture you should introduce the magazine itself and an introduction should be written at the end of all your writing, because without having the final you would not know what you are going to introduce. Our final piece of work should be very creative, because we are all designers and should be able to create a narrative or a story. We need to talk about the context of the subject matter historically, politically, psychologically, socially and even personally.
The third required skill is ‘Agility and adaptability’. This is also very significant because if you want to stay with the same company and the same job, remember that that job is changing continuously and therefore each year you will be required to be able to learn new skills. The fourth required skill is ‘Initiative and entrepreneurialism’. It is not important to have set of goals and achieve all of them, it is important to not be afraid to not achieve all goals but to be fearless and take risks to achieve your goals. The fifth required skill is ‘Effective oral and written communication’. This is a very important factor not just for getting a job but for everywhere, because if you cannot communicate and explain what you are trying to get across to the audience then you will not become successful at persuading. Persuading is what a lot of students find hard to do said Dr. Wagner and a lot of students do not know how to write with voice.
In design ‘Differentiation’ is very important and being able to stand out from everyone else. Another question that Mark had asked us is “what is a record?” A record is something that you keep track of; it could be a collection, notes of the past or a recording. It is very important that we keep a record of what is being said in all of the lectures. The most useful record making for me is to take notes as writing, because you are listening to what the lecturer is saying and taking notes, so you are taking all the information in. Whereas if you are just recording from a video camera then you may need to go back to the video and watch it all over again if you were not concentrating in the lecture. Mark showed us a video called “seven skills students need for their future”, which is a speech by Dr. Tony Wagner, who talks about the seven must have skills for the future. From what Dr. Wagner has said, it appears that all these seven skills will get you a job as well as make you keep your job forever. The first skill required is ‘Critical thinking and problem solving’. This makes sense because especially as a graphic designer, everyone has talent and will eventually be able to use the
The sixth required skill is ‘Accessing and analyzing information’. As we all know we are provided with substantial information from the web and it is so easy to do research, but what is difficult is to know which information is useful and important and which is not that important. The last required skill is ‘Curiosity and imagination’. Having an idea, but knowing how to portray that and then present that to the audience is important. So having new ideas and making it successful is what will make a designer stand out as creative. Overall from this lecture I have learnt very useful information that will make this piece of article writing for me much simpler and quicker to do, because I now know which format to write it in. It has also been very interesting watching Dr. Wagner’s video, because even though I was aware of all these skills that are required for the future of a designer, I was not fully aware on maybe exactly why they were all needed.
Mark Ingham Manifestos On the 29/02/12 we had a lecture from Mark Ingham about ‘Manifestos’. A manifesto is a declaration of someone’s intentions, beliefs, opinions, and motives. It is a statement where someone writes what is important to them. Every designer has a Manifesto, because a manifesto portrays an aim or a goal that someone has, and without an aim in life there would be no point in life. Me personally I do not want to live a monotone lifestyle, I want to offer the world as much as I can and affect it even if this means in the slightest way. I have written a manifesto for myself after this lecture, because I have always known what I have wanted in life otherwise I wouldn’t be in university, but I have never really put this onto paper. “I want to inspire people with my designs and become a really successful graphic designer and artist. What I want my main role to be is, is to help people to communicate their ideas whether it is for a negative or positive subject, such as war, abuse, political matters, social matters or just for an uprising event or an advertisement for a new business or to promote somebody’s work. I want to be a voice for people and I want to do this through art. I want the world to see how
powerful art and design is and how influential a piece of graphic is when the audience looks at it, otherwise we would not have graphics. I think art is beautiful, and an example of art could be a drawing, a type poster, or just a piece of music. I personally, since I was a little kid have loved both drawing and music. I have always had an artistic spirit and have always been able to express my personal voice through my art. Now what I want to do is gain the required skills to be able to help others who do not know how to show their voice or an opinion or a belief to the world in a persuasive manner. And of course like everybody else I also want to earn a lot of money, not because money is everything, I don’t believe that, it just makes life easier to be able to do things and buy things that you need, whenever you need because nothing is free in this world.” From this lecture I have learnt what a manifesto is, and have managed to write my own one. It has made me think through what it is that I exactly want from life and what I want to achieve, and who I want to be. I now am really clear with my goals in life and will try everything to achieve them all, no matter if this means taking risks!
Mark Ingham Animed Robots On the 07/03/12 we had a lecture with Mark Ingham about ‘Animated robots’. The thing that differentiates a drawing from an animation is ‘movement’. The first photograph to ever come out was in 1826 and the first film to be ever invented was in 1895 called ‘Sortie des Usines Lumière à Lyon (Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory)’ made by Auguste and Louis Lumière. Could you imagine watching an animation for the first time,even though I do not know exactly how it would have felt I can compare it to when I had first watched a 3D film and how astonished I was, because it was something new, something which I hadn’t seen before. I watched the whole film in amazement. Animated is when something is moving or something that appears to be moving, so it basically means giving a life and a soul to something. Growing up as a kid I have always loved to watch cartoons, and I used to have the whole book collection of all the Disney stories. Some of my favourite stories was ‘The little Mermaid’, ‘Snow White and the seven dwarfs’ and ‘Lady and the tramp’. These stories were extremely interesting to me, because they had a magical, dream like narrative to them, and they took me to a totally different world,
other than the one we live in. I was able to dream, imagine and feel like I was living the story with the characters themselves. It was like being in a magical world yourself, and this was happening by just reading a book or watching an animation. This is why animation is extremely powerful, because it gives a life and a soul to the characters of the animation, but also makes the world more entertaining for children. Animation is a form of entertainment! The Walt Disney company had started in 1923. The founder was Walt Disney and his brother Roy. The first set of animated films they had produced were called the ‘Alice Comedies’. Mickey Mouse had been born in 1928 along with the rest of the Mickey Mouse gang. Even in this century Mickey Mouse is still around, it is my baby sister’s favourite show. I think Disney is extremely inspirational and sensational, because their stories have been a part of billions of children’s lives and will carry on to be.
Simon Herron Drawing On the 14/03/12 we had a lecture from Simon Herron on ‘Drawing’. He started off talking about art historians and curators, and the fact that whenever they want to see his work they want to see the origin of the drawings he has made, and how he has started off with them. Herron spoke about the techniques that were used for collage making in 1964. All of the production was photographic, they started off with producing a drawing, which was then photographed, then produced, originally normally an A4 size, and then it would finally be photographically produced and used. They used a very old fashioned printing technique called ‘true to scale printing’. True to scale printing leaves an embedded ink on the surface, so you can get it printed with any pantone colour. Drawing is made firstly to figure stuff out, secondly to have an idea and explain it to people and thirdly to try and sell it to people and persuade them to buy it. What Herron said was “with drawing you have the chance
to be experimental, and have a lot of rough copies, because if it doesn’t look you can just throw it away”, which is very true. However me personally, when I draw, if I feel as if the final stage of my drawing is not what I really wanted it to look like, I work on it until it looks good, and I do not ever remember starting a drawing and throwing it away. If I am just drawing sketches and my purpose is for the drawings to look rough then I’ll keep them, but if I am aiming to have a finished final piece of drawing I will work on it until it gets to its final stage, even if this means covering the canvas or paper with layers and layers of different materials, to cover things up. This is what I personally find experimental, because it becomes trickier and a challenge.
Neil Spiller Ornamental savagery On 21/03/12 we had a lecture from Neil Spiller about Ornamental Savagery. Spiller spoke a lot about Surrealism and Salvador Dali. Surrealism was an art movement that had started in the early 1920’s. Surrealism is best known for its visual artwork and also writing. A lot of surrealists did automatic writing, which is writing subconsciously, without being aware of the content. Surrealists also made a lot of visual artwork, and the art normally is very weird and dream like. They drew their dreams, imaginations and things that were too unreal to be true. But they made it look real in the visuals, which made it look amazing. The main element that was used in surreal artwork was weird juxtapositions of things. Salvador Dali was a Spanish surrealist painter. He did extremely striking and bizarre images, and was well known for this. One of his best pieces of work was called ‘The persistence of Memory’ in 1934. Other materials he has used in his work
are film, sculpture and photography. Dali was extremely imaginative, and that was his main skill, that made him a very successful surrealist. Andre Breton is a French surrealist, and is best known as the founder of Surrealism. He did a lot of writing and was a poet. In 1924 Breton wrote a Manifesto for Surrealism and his first line was “So strong is the belief in life, in what is most fragile in life – real life, I mean – that in the end this belief is lost.” I think this is extremely powerful, and it really questions the reader to think, that is life just the life we live, or is it also the unreal that we believe in, or the unknown that we believe in. This is why he says in the end this belief is lost, because there are a lot of unknown things in life, like where do we actually go when we die, is there another life for an example, or where do our dreams come from, and our imaginations, and how do we really think subconsciously. These are extremely fragile things in life, because we nothing is right or wrong, we choose to believe!
Mark Ingham Final Lecture On the 28/03/12 we had our last lecture with Mark Ingham. We were focusing on introductions and conclusions. An introduction and conclusion are the two most important things of a piece of writing. It is also the same with a film and any other visual. With an introduction it is like an entrance to your overall writing, and it should grab the attention of the reader, and outline the focus of the overall writing. Mark gave us some ideas about what we can use as an attention grabber, such as startling information, an anecdote, a dialogue and summary information. With the startling information the information needs to be factual and have a focal point, where it defines the point you wish to make. An anecdote is a short and amusing or interesting story about a real incident or a person. Mark
told us to make an anecdote short, to the point and is relevant to what you are talking about. If you want to start with a piece of dialogue make sure it is clear on who is saying what, and only use two or three exchanges between the speakers. You do not need to say who the speakers are exactly, if it is obvious and has a relevance to the point you are trying to make. If you want to start off with summary information, then you just explain your topic in general terms and eventually lead the reader into your topic. The conclusion is also very important, it is finalising your overall topic and leaves the last impression on the reader, which means it should be powerful. You can do this by making your last paragraphs very strong, with no specific formula. You can also outline your main point and describe your own personal feelings towards the topic.
Goodbye GAMSWEN readers You have now come to the final of my GAMSWEN news mag. I hope you have really enjoyed reading and learning about the interesting lectures I have been having at the University of Greenwich. Whether you are looking to study at the University of Greenwich, or you have just been reading for inspiration, or because you want to take some tips on analysing and evaluating information, you are doing just the right thing! I think it is always the best to keep doing research, and constantly looking at other artistâ€™s work , and broadening the depth of your knowledge within the Art and design culture.
Whatever job you do it is essential for you to know what is around you, and out there in the industry! For Art and design students you definetly need to know what events and competitions are taking place, what exhibitions are out there, how other artists are promoting themselves, where you wish to work in the future, and their certain requirements for an employee, and most importantly having an aim in life! Without an aim in life you would be lost, not knowing why you are actually on this earth, have dreams, have imaginations and make them come true, fight for it and make your impact on this earth!
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