I am now 50% through my short course at Central St. Martin’s, so I thought it would be good to reflect on it a bit.
I’m not good at design – or drawing, for that matter. Never have been, really. So I thought quite a few times before I signed up to this course, which, with the name of ’100 Design Projects’ did worry me a bit! Design is very much a part of my life, though – I may not be a designer but the essence and philosophy of good design is something I really appreciate and strive for.
The idea of the course is to get us to think differently about design through a series of small quick-and-dirty projects. I can vouch for the fact that I definitely am doing that. We started with typography: we were given what we thought were random letters and a choice of fonts to choose from for each letter, with the instruction that we could arrange each letter however we liked on the sheet of paper. It was really interesting to see how each of us interpreted it. We also had to design a header for a fictional magazine called Typography Monthly, keeping in mind that typographers are a picky lot. There are a couple of professional designers and engineers in the class as well a few fresh grads, amongst others, and we all interpreted them so differently – the group review process is really insightful. Capitalism was the main theme for the day’s session. Some of our projects included defacing a Bank of England note, creating a placard for a homeless person, designing a new version of the ‘Welcome to Las Vegas’ board, designing a piece of jewellery for Fidel Castro (we were handed out notes with work by jewellery designers Jesse Mathes, Nanna Melland, Tiffany Parbs, Susan Lenart Kazmer, Ken Thibado and Laura Potter as inspiration), a new bank note for our country of origin and an award for a person who has lost a lot of money in the banking crisis.
I’ll blog about day 2 in another post.