Things I’ve Learnt

Through this term I have learnt a lot about myself and the way I work. I will tell you about it now. The course I chose was Smells Like Teen Spirit, it has been amazing and so interesting from not only a personal perspective but a working perspective too. The course has been about looking into material culture and how different aspect of it can convey meaning. All aspects of material culture portray meaning weather it be from their clothes, shoes, tattoos or accessories. Weather it be political or personal, these subcultures say something thought their use of colour, pattern and form. Often talking about important social issues such as politics, shape, gender and race which are very fired up topic even today. Their clothing is a statement that they feel can’t be said out loud and wearing it instead will receive a bigger acknowledgement. Borrowing from the past is a prevalent aspect which they change up and manipulate to create new meanings. Street style is creative and uses itself to make discussions about establishment and popular culture. Its a fascinating thing with so many different view points and references to look into. I found it intriguing how subcultures can take inspiration from multiple reference points to create unique looks which bring up important discussions. Subcultural groups are different from what is considered to be the norm and usually want to be free from the establishment and the social constructs they place on society. I think what made the topic so inserting for me is that I consider myself in a subcultural group, so looking at how outsiders view our style is intriguing to me. Although interesting the lesson in hand wasn’t really to focus on subcultural styles it had a bigger picture. Being able to deconstruct the people in front of us in class gave me new skills in order to better my own work and take a step back to look at the bigger picture. These skills I can take and use for the rest of my life. This in particular has really influenced my work and has helped me to further analysis the meaning in my own work. Asking myself why have I done this? And what is it saying about me the designer. Taking this critical distance to deconstruct my work is key in developing and moving forward in my discipline. Its helped me to think differently about not only my own work but the others artists around me. Its of great significance to be able to better myself and I feel the skills I’ve gained from this class can help me to improve myself everyday.  

Now I want to talk about me as a learner. Through my time at uni so far I have kept up an extensive blog about my work, I think this has really helped me to think about what I’m doing and it gives me time to step back and be critical with myself. Usually I wouldn’t have these alone times to myself but allowing myself an hour each night to sit down and write has given me time to think and reflect which has had a positive effect on my learning. Another thing I’ve improved over my first year has been my academic writing skills, they still aren’t the best as I’m sure you can tell but I have made incredible improvement. My work is now informed with evidence and theory. Being able to use these quotes from distinguished writers such as Steele, Hopkinson and Spooner has defiantly put my writing on a new level and helps to prove points I’ve made. In my last essay for constellation I didn’t use any quotes and my writing was awful, I was uninformed about the subject and had no passion for the topic. This term I have really enjoyed the topic which helps when writing as It’s not my favourite things to do. I feel I have certainly improved from the last essay and I’m quite proud of the fact. I felt I had more control in this subject which ended in a concluded interesting essay. Some things I still need to work on is my academic writing skills, although they have improve its still not up there. I also need to look more into my grammar and spelling as they are not up to par. These skills really need to be checked as they are important for my Graphic Design work, being able to spot grammatical errors is so important for work for print. It also shows professionalism which I’m always striving to get better at. Another skill I have gotten better at is paraphrasing. At first I found it to hard shorten down paragraphs to sentences only including the important information but with practice things get easier. Practice is usually how I address most the challenges I face, the more I tackle something I’m bad at the better I get. This goes for the academic writing and grammar too. I practised lots before this essay was due and I feel it certainly helped to improve my writing. Somethings i’m still overcoming are off course my academic writing, grammar and spelling but also my concentration. Throughout the previous project and this most recent one, I find it hard to really concentrate and get things done. It has been an issues i’ve tried to overcome for years and hinders me still quite frequently. It delays my working and sometimes prevents me from getting thing done to the best of their ability. This can also be transferred to my graphic design work and I need to keep up a level of profesionism at all times from now on, in order to make it in this harsh environment. Therefore this is one of the biggest issues I need to face, it’ll hopefully help with my next term at uni and allow me to keep improving. 

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