Introduction that this area of discussion was

Introduction

Since childhood, I have
always displayed an innovative and imaginative mind-set, wanting to express
myself in a way words could not. Deriving from this mind-set, my decision to
apply for a degree course in Graphic Design was driven by a desire to
understand the world better from both a commercial and technology driven
perspective, whilst continuing with a creative medium, with strong mobility.

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The intrinsic role of
art in our everyday lives fascinates me, especially within design. I believe
that it is what makes this world the way it is. It is a fundamental aspect of
life and happiness, a universal language that allows us to understand and
communicate with each other. The world is bland without it, and cannot be the
world we live in today, a good design communicates with individuals and
determines a product’s success in the marketplace.

Studying the Professional
Studies module has reinforced my understanding of the purpose, impact and
endless possibilities designing has and pathways with the aim to, eventually,
help me refine my contemplations on my future. This module has further encouraged
myself to obtain and benefit from what the university delivers to contribute to
the range and quality of my skills.

In this essay, I will reflect on what I have learnt
throughout this module including the roles of graphic designers in different
sized companies and the business of designing as a whole. In addition, I will
also reflect on my journey towards discovering my niche and where I would like
to see my future in graphic design.

 

Myself:
now and in the future, and what
you have to offer.

 

During discussions in earlier
lectures of the Professional studies module, we were encouraged to think about
where we would like to see ourselves as graphic designers in the future. Despite
the acknowledging that this area of discussion was inevitable, it proved to
myself as extremely daunting. Prior to beginning the module, I was unsure with
which direction and area of graphic design I wanted to peruse professionally. Despite
having an interest in graphic design as a whole, I was figuring out what my
role would be in the business world of designing, understanding that “Knowing
where to focus your skill and work is a great way to stand out in the field.” (MOWE
Studio, 2017). Since the world of graphic design is very broad, I felt overwhelmed
with choices which restricted amount of time.

 

Growing up, I showed an interest in illustrating and
animating videos. I was further entertained by watching TV idents and show
reels for the theme songs of my childhood shows, enjoying the visual elements
used to engage the viewer and add to the aesthetic of the show. Undertaking the
New Media Design Module, I believe developed this interest. In this module, we
explored graphic design within screen based applications. One of the two briefs
given was to create a motion graphic teaser trailer for a fictional game. This was
the first time I explored into motion graphics and discovered the correlation it
had with graphic design, thus serving as the catalyst for my case study and beginning
my journey towards discovering my hopes for the future.

For my case study, I chose to interview Joseph Lattimer,
who was a Senior Motion Designer at Sony Pictures Entertainment in London and
is now working as a freelancer. Lattimer himself
had a background
in art and design, initially focusing on graphic design for two years as Higher
National Diploma and Higher National Certificate, so I believed
that interviewing him would be more beneficial and relevant to me. The
interview overall gave me interesting insight into the procedures Lattimer
took, from a design student, being promoted as a leader in a creative team to
currently working independently. The case study also delivered insight into how
clients and designers converse and how a final outcome is contracted in the
real world. Interviewing Lattimer gave myself the reassurance that I was not in
fact falling behind with my outlook on future prospects within the graphic design
profession. He maintained the usefulness in being trained in traditional
graphic design and learning how to integrate additional elements into their
existing skill set of design knowledge.

Lattimer provided me with useful links and names of software’s
to research and familiarise myself with in order for myself to move forward in
the area of motion graphics. The primary software used for Motion Graphics is
usually Adobe After Effects, which was the programme I used to create my motion
graphic trailer in the New Media Design module. Despite the proposed software
being Adobe Animate, I wanted to challenge myself and develop my skills into
something new.

In the lecture in the second week of the semester,
we had a PDP workshop with Satvinder Sehmbey, the faculty Employability Adviser
at Anglia Ruskin University. During this session, we found out about the
importance of networking. I am very grateful for the lecture, as here I learnt
that professional networks can lead to more business opportunities and even potentially
furthering my professional statuses. The discussions brought up in this session
is what enabled myself to get in contact with Joseph Lattimer.

A secondary
session with Sehmbey, elaborating
from the previous lecture, highlighted the importance of CVs in our industry, “Your
graphic design resume is going to be just as important as your portfolio, if
not more important than your portfolio when it comes to job hunting.”
(UCreative.com, 2008). We discussed how competitive
the field of design is and how essential it is to ensure your CV stand out. Despite
having already created a CV previously to find work summer work before I
started university in first year, I found this workshop extremely useful in
relating my resume directly towards a graphic design profession. Although the
main structure of information is the same with the majority of CV’s, I learnt
that within the design industry, there are certain characteristics that are
needed for a more appropriate CV. CVs that are creatively designed will gain
the full attention of the recipient. we also talked about the importance of
communication with designers operating in our profession.

Graphic
designers communicate ideas through text and image. I believe there was a misconstruction
many students had of only providing a portfolio for employers when job hunting.
However, I became further aware of the relevance of communication in graphic
design, and how it is important in multiple outlets too. Graphic designers have
to articulate proposals not only towards employers, but also companies,
clients, and many more.

We discussed the business of design in the in the third
week of the semester. The topics covered in this lecture were the financial
elements of setting up a business, pitching; estimating and project management.
Initially, I found the majority of sessions in Professional studies to be
intimidating. However, I am extremely appreciative for the lecture as I feel
more prepared for the professional world. The viewpoint that I discovered most
accommodating during this discussion was the topic of rate cards and project
fees. This really put things into perspective and gave me an idea of how the
working world would really work in graphic design. This developed during our
session in week five when we further explored details about invoicing, tax,
banking and record keeping. I have found these businesses based lectures very
informative and I will certainly keep them in mind in the future.