I expected a lot from the final three weeks; some kind of dramatic punctuated ending, a meaningful shared experience, an empathetic collective wave of emotion maybe. Instead, the approach came quickly, jarringly, and the end rolled over ironically unexpected and tense. And “That’s it.” She said, what I remember most about the last day, just yesterday, was an air of tension and then another of us repeating the words “that’s it”, “that’s it” as if this would somehow spark an ingenious revelation of possibility and hope. Instead I feel drained, dazed, like I am tilting off a clifftop blindfolded. I’m hoping the fall will surprise me with candy floss and diamonds but it could equally be a pit of snakes, tigers even, and I won’t know until I let myself fall. I have to trust that I fitted a rope, or a parachute, in preparation. I have to hope that I will somehow find and grab hold of the energy needed to throw myself forwards into the void. Into something better than just a kitchen porter job found on Indeed.com.
What is left, temporarily, the last string attaching me to university life, is the exhibition. Maybe I should have blogged more, maybe I should have spent more time on my portfolio of 3rd year work. Now it’s all handed in and there is nothing left but the silently standing exhibition space, regrettably sparse corner filled only with ‘secretly’ unfinished screen printed t-shirts and hand painted skateboards. The unrealistic initial ambition muffled underneath a simple branding project, hopefully it will be enough.
I thought designing a map would be easy. There is tons of inspiration online (yes, I am guilty of occasionally searching through Pinterest for ideas), I’ve taken ideas from the outside too, I had a strong image in my head of what I wanted it to look like and yet every time I sit down at a table with my laptop or a piece of paper, paints, pens (I’ve tried everything), my mind goes blank and I throw out some amateur looking clip-art nonsense.
But the final EVER deadline is fast approaching so I gave this little nightmare another go. Here’s what I have so far:
Next up, my dissertation design and some more progress with my final major project. *groan*
21 days and 3 projects to finish, blog about, touch up research and development documents for. Photos to take, pages to print, laser cutting and screen printing to do, feedback to take on board, changes to make. The feedback I received this week wasn’t how I expected it would be and I am disappointed in myself. Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in making plans for the future on the rocky foundations of the present, and it’s difficult being knocked down to discover the groundwork isn’t sturdy enough to land on.
Enough with the metaphors. I thought Matt had faith in what I was doing. My project seemed solid and well-thought through, I suppose it didn’t come across that way and I was given an average ‘satisfactory’; slap bang in the middle of the spectrum. To me this is a failure. I have so many people expressing their admiration for “how hard I work”, “how brave I am for making such daring plans”, and “how much I throw myself into”, I guess I’ve been taking myself for granted, assuming my capability based on the throw-away comments of others. I never meant to become arrogant, I think it’s just difficult to regain total modesty once I let myself believe I was doing well.
There is no point in simply recognising my faults, although that is the first step, what is important is where I go from here. And I think the answer is to embrace my target audience, like Matt mentioned in my feedback, and do more research on a more specific market, before properly planning out my exhibition space and powering through the designs for the touch-points I have chosen. All through this project I have had a rough idea of how I wanted my exhibition piece to look, but this week I have put together a better idea of the layout.
The main touch-points of my exhibition will be the merchandise (t-shirts, hats etc.) as well as branded decks and the website on a mac, acting as the ’till. I might even find a card reader, at the risk of making it seem like too much of a shop environment. I will also throw in stickers, thank you notes and broken skateboards as shelves. I have also sought advice from other members of the course; Carwyn mentioned a clothes rail held up by halves skateboards, using the trucks to hold up a metal pole to hang the t-shirts from. Jasmine suggested providing branded boards for guests to navigate the whole exhibition on, however I am sure Ian would have a problem with the health and safety risks of actually doing this! I also need to produce better illustrations for the merchandise designs, and keep on working on the individual pages of the Stalefish website and take my own photos. Now, to get on with it…
Here’s a preview of the website I’ve put together so far: https://amydunstall.wixsite.com/stalefishstudio
This could probably be classed as procrastination, when other people on my course are getting ISTD awards for their work (which is amazing by the way, congratulations!).
I’m just sitting in the Bay drinking too much coffee as usual, and doodling up logos and merchandise designs for Stalefish…
It’s the Easter break and I have yet again escaped to the countryside town of Ammanford for some well needed time off. When I say time off I do mean spending every hour taking photos, uploading photos, setting up eBay, listing 100(!?!) items to eBay, setting up a Kickstarter account, sorting my GoFundMe, making, rearranging and deleting social media accounts, sharing all of the above and trying, desperately, to maintain a healthy social life and not be distant or absent to expectant friends, family, other(?). I am sorry to everyone I’ve seemingly ignored, I promise I am trying my best to stay on the ball.
As a reward to myself for getting all these very time consuming and brain numbing tasks done, I indulged in a little Final Major Project work. Yeah, my reward for work is more work… So, I made stickers! And while I was checking them out on the printing site, I figured for the postage price I may as well redesign and print the Thank You Notes too.
The next step is to do some more illustrations and crack on with the website! After a quick bike ride along a canal in the countryside because it’s a nice day yet again and I’d quite like to drag my face away from this laptop screen for a few hours before my brain implodes on itself.