N°23- Digital needs analogue

 

In this online article the author David Hieatt a graphic designer uses a letterpress to do some work instead of InDesign. He states that

“In a digital world, isn’t all this just a pain in the ass? For sure, it took us some time. And the late nights by the team just sticking labels on to envelopes has been something. (Thanks Naomi, thanks Rob)

But something tells me that digital needs analogue.

Now and again we just need something to arrive on our doormat that we look forward to opening.

Print is still magic.”

By moving using the analogue way of printing he discovered the lovely relationship between digital and analogue. I had a similar “aha” moment when I did the letterpress course at LCC this summer. I had only learned graphic design using the Adobe Suite in Uni and when using the letterpress I had a new understanding why Adobe is set up the way it is. I had no idea that upper case and lower case came from the where the letters were placed in the cases and I had a new appreciation for kerning when I had to do it by hand. I do agree with this article that digital does need analogue and I am keen to explore this relationship further.

http://davidhieatt.typepad.com/doonethingwell/2015/04/digital-needs-analogue.html

N°22- Processing: Analogue / Digital Material Surfaces

Catherine sent me this useful article outlining a workshop that was done using digital and analogue surfaces.

See link for it below:

http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/projects/networks/issue-18-july-2012/processing-analogue-digital-material-surfaces-imprecise-with-precise-tools-a-collaborative-student-staff-workshop-with-international-guests

Interesting quotes:

“by marrying the precision of computer-control with the imprecision of hands-on making, mess and mistakes” Birghton Article

“The results are very basic and the challenge is to develop an artistic standpoint. Manual control of a tool is much more direct. So for everybody it felt like drawing a picture without using their hands, guiding the brush only by giving spoken commands. After getting over this frustration the workshop showed what could be achieved even with limited abilities (Laux, 2011).”

It hints at a useful tension between digital and analogue, machine and human, computer-controlled plot versus the hand-made mark. There is a wider implication that chance, mistakes, mess and hands-on making are essential in the post-digital age

Students witness the tutor-practitioner solving problems, making mistakes. Being able to work alongside and witness the decision making processes of professional artists and designers

N°21- Architecture and computers: action and reaction in the digital design revolution

Here are some interesting quotes from Architecture’s point of view in introducing digital technologies. I found this book especially useful because they talk about the use of digital in the classroom and give examples of some case studies that would be worth looking into.

“ With the increasing emphasis on digital skill, yet another layer of abstraction by simulacra has been introduced, with the potential of separating students even further from the reality of construction” James. S (2001) p. 211

“like Picasso knowing anatomy before being able to convincingly fragment it” James. S (2001) p. 212

“ Very few schools seems to have an integrated plan for introducing computers into all studios, focusing on a selection of course that teach proficiency instead” James. S (2001) p. 212

Steele, James. (2001) Architecture and computers: action and reaction in the digital design revolution. London: Laurence King.

N°20- The Fundamentals of Illustration

So from No. 20 onwards I will be working on my self initiated project. I have decided that I would like to look into how to introduce digital pattern cutting into the womenswear curriculum.

In our session we looked at different methods of research and how to start our research. After this session I went to the library to get a start. I found that there was little research in introducing digital pattern cutting but there are many other industries that have introduced an aspect of working digitally alongside analogue. These industries include graphic design, Architecture and Illustration.

Here are some quotes I found interesting from the Fundamentals of Illustration.

“The journey that the illustrator may have taken over previous years in order to reach a point where creating work becomes second nature” Zeegan, L (2005) p.58

“the blend and scope of their chosen materials, tools and techniques is what helps define the work that they produce” Zeegan, L (2005) p.58

“Experimenting with techniques and ways of working can be more important than exploring the scope” Zeegan, L (2005) p.58

Zeegen, Lawrance; crush. (2005) The Fundamentals of Illustration. Lausanne: AVA.

N°19- Engaging Imagination

Here are some interesting excerpts from this reading. I focused on chapters 1,2 and 8 as this is what interested me with my practise.

Chapter 1 focused on the idea of introducing 3-4 modalities to engage the students to have better results. Giving students that time to mull over and practise different forms of learning is more memorable to the students. I would like to practise this in a workshop that I teach the students for draping. I usually get the students to drape using fabric based on a image. To implement different modalities I would like them to first

  1. Make a mini paper mock up of the image
  2. Create a working drawing of the image
  3. Write down an analysis of the seams and details of the image

Chapter 2 focuses on thinking critically.

Chapter 8 uses clinical therapy to analyse how to ask good questions. They use a case study where they ask students to write self characterisations of themselves. They share them and analyse them in terms of context, recurrent or dominant themes and motifs. I do something similar with my students where we ask them to write a bio about themselves. I however ask them to present to get to know the students and form a community amongst them. Ido not use it for analyse and self discovery. I would like to investigate clinical therapy in teaching further for my practise.

James, A. Brookfield, S. (2014) Engaging Imagination. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

N°17- Opportunities and Challenges

In this session Lindsay had us brainstorm about the opportunities and challenges using one on one teaching, small group teaching, one to many and crits. See them outlined below:

One to one teaching

Opportunities

● Personalised, inclusive – can meet diverse needs ● Private/confidential ● Can be straight with individuals who need a push ● Build relationship & trust ● Look at personal development and progress

Challenges

● Parity of student experience ● Repetition of effort ● Have to be on one another’s wavelength ● Feedback limited by teacher’s experience ● Puts onus on tutor ● Can turn into pastoral care ● Can create dependency ● Easy to go off topic ● Time management

Small Group Teaching

Opportunities

● Less intimidating than bigger groups ● Space to move around ● Ideal for practical/technical skill development ● More democratic, less hierarchical? ● Intimate, personalisable ● Facilitates exchange of ideas, participation ● Peer to peer learning ● Cover more ground than in 1-2-1 teaching? ● Easier to pitch at right level than with large groups ● Good for technical/hands on teaching ● Good for brainstorming ● Reflects many aspects of professional practice ● More onus on students ● Build students’ confidence ● Can explain or set outcomes at the start

Challenges

● Enforced participation ● More time-intensive than with larger groups ● Balancing contributions from participants ● Feedback more generic/less personal ● Forming the groups ● Keeping students off their mobile devices ● Placement of multiple groups in room ● Individual personalities/attitudes have more impact ● Attendance/punctuality can radically alter group dynamic ● Getting feedback from group ● Evaluating learning/grading e.g. collaborative projects ● Keeping up momentum ● Relies on verbal communication

One to many (lectures)

Opportunities

● Can pre-determine structure ● Good for giving an overview of a subject ● Good for introducing complex ideas ● Can help to develop the lecturer’s own thoughts ● Easy to use multimedia – videos, images, etc ● Can see lots of students in one go ● Can help to create a community ● Student perception of contact time and value for money ● Parity of student experience ● Can record/lecture capture ● No repetition ● Bringing in guest lecturers ● Suits students who are ready to engage

Challenges

● Not personalisable ● Managing large numbers ● Ensuring attendance ● Difficult for those on the language boundary ● Meeting diverse learning needs ● Gaining and maintaining attention ● Performance anxiety ● Keeping them awake ● Limited opportunity for dialogue ● Difficult to check understanding ● How can they ask questions? ● Reliance on IT, Tech

Crits

Opportunities

● Formative assessment – student can see how they are doing ● Student learns to articulate and reflect on own work ● Identify strengths and weaknesses ● Peer feedback ● New perspectives, varied feedback ● Sharing info & references ● Strengthening of group/sense of community ● Develop critical analysis skills ● Build confidence in presenting ● Can see students’ work as a whole ● Can involve everyone ● Preparation for ‘real world’

Challenges

● Negative affect (emotions, stress) ● Potential for tutor to dominate ● Potential for some students to dominate ● Student absence due to fear ● Developing an open, honest process ● Cultural friction? ● Requires full engagement ● Takes a long time ● Breadth of knowledge needed

N°16- Creative Attributes Framework

In the teaching and learning session on June 7th we discussed employability within the curriculum as well as The Creative Attributes Framework. I found this session very relevant to my practise as that morning we had a meeting to discuss our graduate profile and discussed the framework in relation to our course revalidation.

In the discussion about our graduate profile we discussed that we would like a graduate with a strong combination of design and technical skills. We would like them to be aware of the transferrable skills that we teach them which would enable them to work in any creative field. The skills that we would like them to acquire throughout their degree are in line with the framework and include: confidence, agility, storytelling and enterprise.

See The Credit Framework Attributes below:

During the sessions we were recommended some readings. One was “Creative Graduates, Creative Futures.” In reading it another attribute I would like to propose adding to our graduate profile it to have a solid awareness of work/life balance. I believe this is something that leads to a more sustainable future. Another interesting aspect in the journal was becoming a life long learner. Our graduate should always continue to develop their creative practise and we should nurture them to be able to do so on their own.

The journal finishes by saying “It is clear there is work to be done to prepare graduates for the likelihood they will be self‐employed and for the requirements for creative careers, with appropriate support for progression into work and continuing professional development into their careers.” This is interesting as I am a teaching/practitioner and this aspect is something that I value in teaching the students. I am going to explore how to integrate this into a short unit for our course revalidation.

Ball L, Pollard E, Stanley N. (2010) Creative Graduates Creative Futures

 

N°15- Internationalisation

In our session on internationalisation in education we looked at how it affects us as teachers and the challenges in delivering education to internationally diverse cohorts. I recently did a workshop in March on Internationalisation at the Learning and Teaching conference at LCF. In this workshop we were put into groups to discuss the topic of internationalisation in our classroom. One of tutors in my group asked where I was from and I told him I was sort of a mixed bag (my parents from South American but I was born in Jamaica, raised in Canada and then moved the London later in life). He was a bit dumbfounded with this information as he was British and had lived in England his whole life. He the asked if I share my background with my students.

I realised that I did not, I find that I try not share personal information with my students. We then had a discussion as a group and the workshop leader pointed out that sharing my background could help foster interculture with the students. If I am hesitant to speak about my culture, how can I engage my students to do so?

Within my practise I would like to design more sessions on cross cultural collaboration as I have now realised its importance. I watched the below video about The Global Classroom that Natasha Radcliff Thomas set up.

By engaging in cross cultural collaboration we can, foster interculture, encourage peer-to-peer learning which allows the students to gain insights into other cultures which helps to increase interculture awareness and accommodation.

Internationalization is a something that I need to further look into in my practise not only for planning and teaching but also to help support student learning. I would like to delve deeper into understanding what motivates my international students to come to the UK and understand what they do with the skills we teach them once they graduate.

 

 

N°14- Sustainability

For our sessions on sustainability we were asked to find a definition of “sustainable development” that resonates with us. The definition that I found was in the Brundtland report that states:

Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It contains within it two key concepts:

  • the concept of needs, in particular the essential needs of the world’s poor, to which overriding priority should be given; and
  • the idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organization on the environment’s ability to meet present and future needs.” (Sustainable Development, 2015)

Most people in the sessions had this definition and we discussed the implications of this. For instance who determines the needs in the first concept and how can this put into the context of learning.

I then began to do some research after the session on Steven Sterling and his research to help me understand sustainability in the context of learning. The key concept that I found interesting with regards to Sustainable Learning is criticality. Sterling quotes Raskin in the Journal for Sustainability Education who states “the shape of the global future rests with the reflexivity of human consciousness – the capacity to think critically about why we think what we do – and then to think and act differently”. (Raskin 2008: 469). Sterling suggest a shift in seeing, knowing and doing as stated below. (Sterling 2014)

  • Seeing – perception (or the affective/normative dimension). This is the perceptual domain – how we see the world, make sense of it, and how our filters affect this experience.
  • Knowing– conception (or the cognitive/descriptive dimension). This is the conceptual domain – how we understand the world and represent the world to ourselves and others.
  • Doing – practice (or the intentional/applicative dimension). This is to do with how we actively participate in the world, which relates to decisions, plans.

 

He states that in educational terms this “represents change in paradigm and purposepolicy and curriculum and pedagogy and practice.” (Sterling 2014)

The way Sterling breaks it down into these 3 areas makes it easier to understand how to integrate sustainability into my pedagogy and practise. From reading this I discovered that it is not just a matter of teaching a unit on sustainability but as a course we need to look at our three year program as a whole and teach the skills needed for our students to actively participate into thinking critically about what they are doing and how this can impact the rest of the world. We have to make them start to see themselves as a part of this vast community in which they can make an impact on.

IISD (2015) Available at: http://www.iisd.org/topic/sustainable-development (Accessed: 25 July 2017).

Sterling, S. (2014) ‘At variance with reality: how to rethink our thinking ‘, The Journal of Sustainability Education, Reflection.