Saturday, 31 March 2018

Make It In Design Winter School

Hi everyone.

I started my last blog post by saying that I couldn't believe it was almost Christmas and now I'm starting this blog post by saying that I can't believe it's almost Easter! Somehow, nearly four months have gone by since I lasted posted and I can only apologise for my lack of contact.

Although it is officially spring in my part of the world, even though we don't yet have the weather to prove it, I am going to blog about Winter School today. As part of my New Year Resolution (remember those?) to commit more wholeheartedly to my designing career, I enrolled on the Make It In Design Winter School. This took place for four weeks during January and according to the blurb is "an exciting global online design event that gives you experience working to Autumn/Winter 2018/19 trend briefs, helps build your portfolio and connect with other designers and gives you the opportunity to get your work published."

There were several reasons why I decided to enrol in Winter School this year and one of them was because Make It In Design is one of the leading global organisations for providing courses and information on surface pattern design which is an aspect of designing that I am keen to learn more about and develop further skills in.

Surface Pattern Designs On Mobile Phone Cases

Unfortunately, the experience of Winter School was not quite as good for me as I was hoping it would be. A lot of this was due to the technical and administrative problems I encountered which were very off-putting. However, as a result of the complaint I made regarding some of these issues at the beginning of the course, I was given a free place on both the Intermediate and the Advanced tracks, even though I had only signed up for the Beginner track.

The other problem I encountered which I felt put me at a bit of a disadvantage was that I am currently not using any of the "industry-standard" computer graphics software programs such as Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator. Because I came to designing via crafting, I have been managing quite well, at least until now, with crafting based programs such as CraftArtist Professional 2. However, not having the programs that most of the other course participants were using probably didn't help.

My Design For Beginner Brief 1: Neutral Art

Anyway, despite all of the above problems, I did eventually manage to produce designs for the two trend briefs for the Beginner track and the two trend briefs for the Intermediate track. (I didn't attempt any of the Advanced track briefs in the end). I also enjoyed interacting with some of the other course participants in the Winter School Facebook group and being inspired by their amazing work. And I did learn quite a lot more about surface pattern design and other aspects of art and design which was very helpful.

My Design For Beginner Brief 2: Autumn Equinox

My Design For Intermediate Brief 1: Bright Blooms

My Design For Intermediate Brief 2: Kabuki's Kingdom

It was also really useful to see my designs, alongside those of all the other participants, in the online Winter School Galleries and to feel that despite my inexperience and lack of technical expertise, my work did not look at all out of place. You can view all the 2018 Winter School Galleries here.

I definitely feel that I have raised my skill levels in surface pattern design, which was one of the main reasons I signed up for Winter School, so I don't have any regrets about doing it, even if it did turn out to be a lot more stressful and therefore a lot less enjoyable than I would have liked. So, onwards and upwards.

Happy designing and Happy Easter.

And I promise to be back before Bonfire Night!