This module had proved to be the most difficult module to date, though that was always going to be the case. I have learnt both positive and negative things about myself, and my design practice, throughout the duration of the module. It has been an eye opening experience, and though at times it may have been overwhelming, I think I leave the course with a clearer idea as to what my design future entails.
A positive taken from this module is the discovery that I am fully capable of producing high quality, visually engaging design using a range of different illustration techniques. Though illustration has always been part of my previous modules, it has never been the sole focus. With this module I took it upon myself to work with a range of illustrative approaches as a creative challenge. I consider myself to have succeeded in several areas, and confirmed to others and myself that I am a visually driven designer. If people where to see me as an illustrator, I would have no problem with that.
Collaborative briefs, such as the DFGA yearbook and the fashion branding, have shown me that I am not a natural leader. I have struggled when it comes to organising people and setting personal deadlines. I always knew it wasn’t in my nature to take charge of situations, and this module has reaffirmed that theory in my mind. However, this is not to say that I am incapable of expressing my opinions when necessary. During DFGA meetings I presented my design work with conviction and clarity, something which I feel aided Mike in choosing my page layouts to develop further. I also made it clear to my fashion student certain ideas she had envisioned in her mind simply would not work for her branding, and instead we came to creative compromises. I have most definitely learnt the hard way that working with a client is a challenge, both mentally and creatively. It’s not something I wish to do again any time soon.
If I where to do the module again there are certain things I would do differently. I may say this at the end of every module, but I should have blogged more. At points I was completely on top of my blog posts, each one with appropriate imagery and thorough supporting analysis. Yet there where also moments when I let it build up, almost to the point where it was difficult to get back on track. This is something I regret now. I would also have picked my briefs a lot earlier, and exploit to their full potential rather than waiting for each to develop at it’s own pace leaving me with few options due to time constraints. Time management has been a big issue for me. Unable to work on more than one brief at a time I should have been organised and assigned weeklong deadlines, and stuck to them. But I just didn’t.
I come out of this final module with a skewed outlook as to what the future holds. At times I have felt graphic design is the only career path I can take. At others it has felt like I have no place within the industry. It would be hard for me to evaluate my time during this module without sounding negative, perhaps even cynical. With additional personal issues to deal with, graphic design should have taken precedence; it should have been an outlet for me. But it wasn’t. It became something I avoided because I couldn’t handle the fact I wasn’t achieving the level of professionalism I assumed I would so late on the course. More than anything I have come to the conclusion that making ‘pretty pictures’ isn’t enough, yet it seems this is all I am capable of. I’m not entirely sure what the future holds for me, but if it involves some sort of illustration then I would be more than happy.