The graphic design course blog for
HND Visual Communication at Edinburgh College

Pitching to the Panel

27 November 2015

After a tough but exciting week, our design teams will be pitching to our creative panel from 1pm today.

The five teams worked for the week with Lewis, Realise, Teviot, the Union, and Whitespace, and took on 'Fortune Favours the Brave', D&AD's own brief in the 2016 New Blood Awards.

Team Whitespace - a late one last night getting their presentation finalised.

The panel - Sheryl Newsome, Gerry Farrell and Alan Ainsley - won't be aware which team worked at which agency during the presentations.  Some of our mentors and Partnership colleagues will also be attending and they'll get to sit in on every pitche, so we should have a really exciting piece of employer engagement.  And of course a bunch of brilliant ideas to look at and assess.

Fortune Favours The Brave

19 November 2015

Our final year students popped up to the rather awesome Whitespace studios today in central Edinburgh to get briefed on the new one week project.

This will be our 7th One Week, and this time around we have five teams of design students working alongside five of Edinburgh's top agencies - Lewis, Realise, Teviot, the Union and Whitespace.  The client this year is none other than D&AD, and the students will be tackling the brief which D&AD have included in the New Blood Awards for 2016 - 'Fortune Favours The Brave'.

Senior Designer at Whitespace Neil Walker and Creative Director Adam Smith did a couple of inspiring talks to the teams, and the project formally kicks off on Monday, with the presentations on Friday. As an added twist this year, we've assembled an independent panel of creatives to assess the results when the teams present.

Sheryl Newsome (Deputy Creative Director at Story), Alan Ainsley (a former Creative Director of the Leith Agency) and Leith Agency legend Gerry Farrell (now running Gerry Farrell Ink) will be the judging panel.  We've also got Greig Anderson from Freytag Anderson reviewing the presentations once the project is over to provide some extra feedback to our students.

You can follow the project on social media with the hashtag #oneweek7 and on Storify.

D&AD setting the tone for #oneweek7

One of the teams, happy to be here outside Whitespace.

Getting organised at Whitespace.

Neil Walker talking shop.

A team discussion already?!

Celebrity Spreads

15 November 2015

Some nice examples from 'Celebrity Spreads' - an HNC Graphics typography project focussing on print editorial design. The requirements - a celebrity photo, a full bleed layout, and a few hundred words.

Blonde - Christina Giannakou

Fassbender - Dora Bowman

Jaar - Ildiko Rohonka

Florence - Sarah Mary Macrae

Just Traditional Types

13 November 2015

Each year we make a pilgrimage to Innerleithen in the Scottish Borders to visit Robert Smail's Printing Works.

Founded in 1866, Robert Smail's Printing Works provided quality printed materials to Scotland for 120 years until its closure in1986, when the property was taken over by the National Trust for Scotland. It remains the only operational jobbing printer of its kind in country, and represents an important part of Scotland's industrial heritage.

This year we made two visits, one with our NC Graphics group, and a second visit with both HNC Graphics and HNC Interactive Design. The team at Robert Smail's gave each group a brilliant tour of the workshop, from the type specimens, printing press machinery and letterpress to the extensive and fascinating archive. The students also got a chance to typeset their own names in metal type and then letterpress print the results.

A visit to this amazing workshop is a bit like going back in time, and the traditional machinery, techniques and experience of working with real type is still a key ingredient in design education that we find inspires student designers and informs their the modern digitally-orientated typographical work in their projects.

All pics by Chris Radley, HNC Graphic Design

DMA Shortlist for Ayesha

6 November 2015

Final Year graphic design student Ayesha Islam has made the shortlist for the prestigious DMA (Direct Marketing Association) Awards.

The DMA Breakthrough Award showcases the best in creativity from undergraduate advertising, design and marketing students in the UK. The brief this year was from East of England Co-op, and our students were encouraged to enter by Sheryl Newsome, one of our course mentors and Deputy Creative Director at StoryUK. We ran the project over three weeks, and Ayesha now joins two other shortlisted students and will attend the awards ceremony in London on Dec 1st.

The DMA Awards are 'rewardingly hard to win,' and this year featured record entries, with nominations in the professional categories from agencies like Wunderman, RAPP, Leo Burnett and OgilvyOne UK.  Check out the full shortlist here.

The brief

The Co-op is searching for a new message, the 'Big Idea'. They want a fresh look that understands their legacy and speaks to the new generation. They want sparkling creative work that resonates with young people, that boosts awareness and builds the Co-op family.

The response - Big Together

Buddy Nights

30 October 2015

Our first Buddy Night of the 2015/2016 session took place last night, with a full house in the studio and an inspirational vibe.

The Buddy concept is an additional to our Mentoring Programme, where designers who have graduated from the course come back to work with our Year One students on their projects, portfolio building and employable skills. Placements, networking and confidence-building are all part of the end result. This year our buddies include junior and middleweight designers from agencies such as Multiply, Primate, Skyscanner, RockStarNorth, Hookson, The Lane, and Whitespace.

Photos by Helena, including the selfie.