The Shape of Things has influenced my Creativity and Design work by reinforcing and developing my ability to iterate existing ideas. As my work in creativity and Design is based in Graphic Design and Photography I had a firm grasp of the basic concept of iteration. This five week course enhanced these skills to the point that I think I would be very capable of being given a brief and then developing a concept from almost nothing. This is due to the creative guide I have developed for myself that has been coaxed and nurtured with the learning I have undertaken throughout this year and in particular this semester.
My practice is situated firmly in graphic design with interests stretching out into both illustration and photography. Within graphic design iteration is a crucial focus as it is how the best design starts. This is true for all practices but most of all for graphic design as it is not uncommon to have 100+ different iterations for a single project or poster. These excessive numbers can be even higher with the influence of financial considerations involved in a professional practice.
My iterations usually involve changing of colour, size or orientation however, now I’m thinking of using different textures and material that I could substitute for plain colours such as using a rocky or concrete texture to provide more depth and variety to my designs. This in turn will allow me to create a larger scope for these designs instead of my current limited possibilities. This realisation has acted as a filter funnel of sorts where my previous options were somewhat narrow but now have widened and will allow me to produce better quality work.
Within this course I’ve gained an appreciation of 3D art and sculpture as I had limited interest in it previously but now I’m quite open to the concept of working more with clay. I enjoy the mould ability of clay and the ease of it to be reshaped into different forms using tools, moulds or my hands. I enjoyed the tactile feel of moulding directly with my own hands rather than having to use machines with other harder materials. I hope to use these 3D forms and integrate them into my existing practice combining both into quite a unique concept and possibly series of art pieces.
I didn’t like making things out of wood. I felt that it was a lot slower and that you didn’t have anywhere near the flexibility that clay had. I do appreciate the extreme accuracy wood can provide unlike the limitation of clay where you can only get so far with your hands and tools. Wood and clay both provide a permanent form but after the clay has been fired this fixed form is therefore more permanent than the wood as the clay turns to “stone”. When working with these very rigid materials I have a kind of anxiety of not being able to go back or that that it will be time consuming to have to repeat creating the wooden model but with clay I am able to almost instantly fix a mistake. Very rarely do you have to completely restart a part when working with clay as opposed wood where you either start again or try to glue your mistake back together and wait a day to see if it actually worked.
Foam was similar to wood, however, it was significantly faster and easier to work with. I still felt my anxiety but it was lessened as the time invested wasn’t as significant as it would be working in wood. Wire was also similar but in the way of speed and workability because you could “mould” the wire by hand similar to clay. The soldering process was also a moulding process which I was very comfortable with when using the soldering iron. Previously I had done a little electronic soldering but now I can do both.
Overall I enjoy the class as well as the exploration it afforded me, especially to do with the different materials and forms I now have access to. I hope in the future I will be able to use these with more confidence in projects. It has been a great learning curve and surprised me with how much I enjoyed using different materials, a highlight being my experience with clay and I hope I will have an opportunity next year to revisit it.