Profile of a graphic design student

July 4, 2011

in News

Emma's End of Year Project - product visuals for 'Restor'

Emma Roe is a Second Year HE Graphic Design student at Central Beds College and for those of you familiar with our Type Can Speak Book, Emma produced the beautiful ‘Type Angel’.  We had another chance to see some of Emma’s work at the College End of Year Show and thought we’d take the opportunity of showing you some of her designs from the Show as well as telling you a little bit about her and her work…

Xcal:  When did you first think you may want to be a graphic designer?

Emma: Well from a very young age I had a creative streak for drawing and generally making things, it would keep me entertained for hours. Any new type of craft set was always first on my christmas list! However I carried on through school, with art not really being a priority subject for me. It wasn’t that I had lost interest in the subject, it was more that i didn’t associate the subject at school with the things I enjoyed doing the most in my spare time, I wanted them to stay two separate things. It wasn’t until the age of 15, when I went to work with my dad in a screen printing company, that I understood what the role of graphics entailed. During this work experience, I was moved about the company to see how it worked, and in that time I spent a few days with the graphic team who produced the artwork for the screen print facility. I would say this was the first time that I thought I may want to be a designer. I was introduced to the programmes of Photoshop and Illustrator for the first time, and was definitely inspired by creative potential of these programmes. I then went on to acquire my own copy of the programmes, and spent my spare time navigating around the software and teaching myself little techniques, similarly as I had previously drawn and created things at a younger age!

Xcal: If you could specialise in one area of graphic design, what would it be?

Emma: From studying the Foundation Degree at Central Bedfordshire College, it has given me the opportunity to complete a number of projects that span across most of the areas of Graphic Design, allowing me to see what I enjoyed, and also what i definitely do not want to take further! There are two areas that particularly stand out for me, being both typography and branding.

Xcal: Can you tell us a little about your End of Year project?

Emma: Our End of Year project gave us the chance to write our own, rather open brief, that we could then base around the areas of graphics that we enjoyed the most. Bearing in mind the project had to be scheduled across the whole year, the topic that we chose had to be carefully selected to have enough depth to represent the time-scale, however needed to be realistic too. I chose to look at the topic of recycling, and set my initial brief as looking at a way to encourage recycling by turning it into a more rewarding experience. After creating a substantial body of research upon everything you could ever think of to do with recycling, I realised there was already quite a lot out there to make recycling more rewarding, and I wanted my work to stand out and be different from this, which set me thinking. What if I could get one step ahead of recycling, and base my project around the concept of reusing instead?

Which is where my idea stemmed from. I was going to create a supermarket brand, that issued customers with a set of packaging that you could go back and refill each time you went shopping. I created the branding for the supermarket which I named Restore, and also the concept behind how the refilling machines would work and how they would look, and gave the brand an identity that ran throughout.

Xcal: What did you find the most challenging part of the project?

Emma: The most challenging part of the project for me was coming up with a suitable name for the brand, and creating the initial “look”. I went through so many names, all of which were logical in terms of what they meant, but none of them felt “right”. There is only so long you can look at a word for before it doesn’t make sense any more too! Then there is the extensive amount of fonts that exist, it was about having the time and patience to pick out the ones I liked, and then experiment with each of them until I found the one that felt the best.

Xcal: What did you find the most rewarding part of the project?

Emma: Even though the naming of the brand took quite a long time and did get a bit frustrating at times, that time spent on perfecting it making it look and feel right, was very rewarding as the rest of the project was then able to flow smoothly when I could link everything together, giving my brand its unique identity and concept.

Xcal: How do you think the End of Year show went for you and your fellow students?

Emma: I think that the End of Year show was a very valuable experience, and it is great to have the opportunity to have a space to show off your work to others. As mad as it sounds, the night of the private view was the first time that I had the chance to walk around and look at the rest of the students work, as I had been so busy and involved making the final preparations for my own space, and it is fair to say I was blown away, it was brilliant, and so good to see such a range of working techniques, all of which can be used as inspiration for future projects we may come across. Everyone has definitely made the most of their experience at CBC!

Xcal: If you could land your dream design job, what would it be and where would you be doing it?

Emma: I don’t think I have a particular dream job or location, I have never really thought about that, I am quite happy just to see where it takes me. I would just love to be able to work my way up just doing something that I have always had a passion for, maybe combining both the art and crafts side along with the graphic would be my perfect situation!

If any of you are as impressed with Emma’s work as we were then drop us a line through the website form and we’ll forward your details and feedback onto Emma.

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