Now for the final stretch of the TICE Graphics journey, the Graphics Gold Stage! Mark Pattinson, our Graphics mentor, offered 4 absolutely fantastic projects to our students this year which made it almost impossible for them to decide which one they wanted to tackle, here’s a round up of each… with the amazing results at the end!
The first project (see project brief Graphics In2Change) was branding for a non-profit organisation called ‘In2Change’, that aims to prevent young people becoming involved in criminal activities. This project was an opportunity to make a real difference to company’s overall aesthetic. The chosen logo would be presented at the Final Show, which is a chance for our TICE students to be acknowledged by industry professionals.
Another project was advertisement for DFDS Seaways, set by creative agency Everything Different (see project brief Graphics DFDS) the World’s Leading Ferry Operator, offering frequent ferry destinations to Europe and a wide range of on-board facilities and low fares. The students were required to design a campaign to promote the low prices and offers at DFDS which was expected to be done through posters, storyboarding a TV commercial, point of sale or press ads. For many, this was quite a sentimental and proud project to be part of. One young lady in particular picked this project because she lived next to where the DFDS docks, which instantly inspired her to do something for them.
Another brilliant brief from Everything Different was to create an advertisement campaign for alcohol awareness (see project brief Alcohol Awareness). The organisation, Balance North East raises awareness of the problems caused by the misuse of alcohol in today’s younger culture. TICE students were expected to design an awareness campaign that highlights the alarming statistics of underage drinking, which brings up a lot of creative challenges. What will be said, what images will be embedded and is it triggering enough to the eye?
The one that peaked people’s interest was to design illustration and packaging for Tommee Tippee, (see Project Tommee Tippee) the number-one brand for baby feeding accessories in the UK and one of the top brands of infant products in the global market. Students were expected to design the decoration for their new range of baby feeding bottles which will be launched in 2017.
Once decisions were made and teams were built they began to design, render and produce their final piece ready to be presented at the final show…nerve wracking but great fun nonetheless!
On day one of the Gold Stage, they began brainstorming, pouring thoughts onto a mind map where they would decide what potential route they would follow, regardless of what was thought to be an unrealistic end goal. In2Change students were greeted by Brian Wreakes, director of the company. He visited all the way from Sheffield to see them and discuss exactly what he was wanting for the new branding. He even arrived with an introductory video to what they do in order for the students to gain knowledge and understanding of what kind of company they’re working with. Mark, teachers and our work experience team pottered around the classroom checking if students needed support in their ideas, as very regularly the creative mind can feel very restricted. In all honesty, support was unnecessary, as these students were completely absorbed in their creative thoughts. Right from the get go their passion and drive in the field of Graphic Design shone through. They were in their element and this was evident in the suggestions that they were drawing up.
Day two had arrived and it was time for the Graphics team to be pushed and encouraged to pick one path to follow for their chosen industry led task. It was time to draw up some legitimate ideas and start ticking off a checklist to ensure that the criteria was met and up to scratch in accordance to the brief. It was essential that everyone had chosen at least one final design idea in order to then further enhance and tweak on the final day. It was on this second day that all work and renderings were reviewed by Mark who is very familiar with this process. He offered his experience and expertise, giving each individual of the graphics team advice and feedback on what works and what needs to be brushed up on. At one point, Mark gathered a panel to support him in his opinions and offer any refreshing points to the students. It was interesting to see how mindful and considerate the students were, particularly at this point. They seemed so determined to continuously improve on their final piece. One student was particularly thrilled about the quality of their work: “I especially enjoyed taking my idea onto the computer and seeing my idea look more professional”.
Then the final few hours which determine the end result – day three of the Graphics Gold Stage. The sole priority of this day was to finalise any work, acting in response to any constructive criticism in order to have finished all design ideas, ready to now be displayed for all guest to view the presentation. After all work had been finalised, there would be no time left for any alterations and all designs would be sent over to be printed. Of course at this stage, the nerves were truly setting and the students were so hesitant about showing their work to so many people. However, by the end of the day, the students had the opportunity to look in perspective and realise how hard they worked over the three intensive days.
After just three days of striving to produce a finished project it’s astonishing to witness the amazing, professional work that has been produced by these students. With the guidance of Mark, the work experience team and the constant support from teachers from school across the North East, they were able to achieve the impossible – a task which many professionals would struggle finishing in such a restrictive amount of time. Over 80% of students commented on the new Photoshop skills they had learned with many saying learning this was what stood out throughout all of the Gold Stage. Never am I failed to be absolutely memorised by the work produced by such a creative bunch and in such a tight deadline. They seem to deliver, handling the intense pressure and using their passion to succeed in the TICE Programme. Congratulations, TICE Graphics class of 2016!
Here’s the results of a fantastic few days and what was showcased at the TICE Final Show: