All posts filed under: Degree shows

It’s showtime: A visit to the LCC and NUA graphics exhibitions

Notebook: 5 July 2017 | DEGREE SHOWS Last year I managed to squeeze in visits to 11 different graphic design degree shows but this year with time against me, I’ve visited just three exhibitions – Reading (see my previous post), the London College of Communication (LCC) and Norwich University of the Arts (NUA). LCC and NUA were both excellent shows – not only was the work of a high standard with plenty of editorial design and typography to satisfy my interests, but it was also very well presented with careful editing, clear captioning and lots of space around it to allow it to breathe and to show the designs off to their best. There’s no point in a student spending a couple of years producing fantastic work only to then present it poorly. Both LCC and NUA choose to loosely group the work into sections – printed magazines here, book jackets there and so on, rather than displaying the work by individual student, and (rightly or wrongly, depending on your viewpoint) this allows them to …

Reading, writing and typography

Pictured above. A collection of old signs and letters on display in the Department of Typography and Graphic Communication at the University of Reading. Photo by Rachel Bray Notebook 18 June 2017 | DEGREE SHOWS | TYPOGRAPHY Reading with a cap ‘R’ – the Thames Valley, Crossrail boomtown; home to the rock festival and the gaol where Oscar Wilde was incarcerated; and home for a while, to poor old Jude Fawley in Thomas Hardy’s novel Jude the Obscure. Once upon a time I spent a week in Reading hospital having my appendix whipped out. It was my first encounter with a scalpel (a few years later I was to learn that the ’10a’ scalpel blade was the graphic designer’s preferred blade of choice). And in 1974 or so, I would have tottered on my platform shoes into Reading’s Top Rank nightclub to see the legendary singer Edwin Starr perform. The ugly old station-side nightclub has long since disappeared and been replaced by smart office blocks but the town is still rather dull and congested with traffic. …

Emerging talent 2016. Part three: Leicester / LCC / CSM

Notebook: 4 July 2016 | DEGREE SHOWS With the annual summer graphic design degree shows almost over for another year, here’s my third and final review that takes in my visits over the last fortnight. You can read my two earlier reviews here and here. I’ve managed to squeeze in 11 very different shows – some good, some great – and there is a summary of all my visits at the end together with a few thoughts on what makes a good show. Tuesday 21 June De Montfort University, Leicester BA (Hons) Graphic Design and Illustration De Montfort university has a buzzy campus right on the edge of the vibrant city of Leicester and I tracked down the graphics show which was housed in the students’ airy studios. Amongst the assortment of packaging and branding design projects, it was the quality of the illustration that popped out at me and in particular, the lively and colourful drawings and hand lettering of Amy Austick, Danielle Wetton, Amy Lesko and Jack Tite – all pictured below in order. My need for strong editorial design and bold photography was satisfied by …

Emerging talent 2016. Part two: Cambridge / Southampton / Winchester

Notebook: 19 June 2016 | DEGREE SHOWS June 2016 and it’s showtime for thousands of final-year art and design students pouring out of the UK’s universities and art colleges. I was keen to visit a handful of the graphic design shows just to get a small taster of the standard and range of work on display and to highlight some of the emerging talent making the big step from study to the workplace. I’d already visited Coventry, Norwich (NUA) and Ipswich (UCS) and you can see my review here. Now I was off to Anglia Ruskin in Cambridge and Southampton and Winchester art colleges in Hampshire… Thursday 9 June Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge School of Art BA (Hons) Graphic Design The Anglia Ruskin Uni’ is just on the edge of the city centre and on this warm June evening the streets were buzzing with life. The University is a tangle of corridors and backyards but I eventually tracked down the art and design block on the far side of the campus and it was alive with the hum of students, parents and …

Emerging talent 2016. Part one: Coventry / Norwich / Ipswich

Notebook: 6 June 2016 | DEGREE SHOWS Every June many hundreds of graphic design graduates complete their three years of study at a UK university and the culmination and celebration of all their hard work and talent is the degree ‘show’ in which their designs are displayed for the course examiners to mark and for friends, family and prospective employers to enjoy. It’s a bittersweet time – joy tinged with sadness, but excitement as well – as the students progress out into the big wide world, ready to become the graphic design stars of the future. I’m visiting as many shows as I can fit in and last week I popped into Coventry University, Norwich University of the Arts (NUA) and University Campus Suffolk (UCS) in Ipswich and here’s a very small taster of just a tiny amount of the talent on display. I’m an editorial designer and typographer so much of the work highlighted below has a bias towards these disciplines. Tuesday 31 May Coventry University BA (Hons) Graphic Design I have a soft spot for Coventry. I studied at the university myself many years ago …