Throughout this module My practical skills have been greatly improved. Coming from knowing very little about the production processes of design or much at all about digital design methods a substantial knowledge of production and design method has been created.For example, studio brief 02 introduced me to areas of illustrator I had no idea existed, the use of pathfinders and clipping masks feeding directly into my final design. Although the mono-print workshop did not form part of any particular brief I managed to use it for a further development of studio brief 03, the direction and purpose this lent to the experimentation with this media produced some really interesting work and allowed me to get to grips with the technology more effectively. Despite being unable to use this process on my final designs, my new found understanding of it means that in future projects I will be able to tell when it can be most successfully utilised and do so.
Through the crits that took place during and at the end of each brief I started to develop a more critical way of thinking, this became useful in not only analysing my own work but other's as well, gradually making the effort to become a more active member of the class. By making use of this skill I have become more and more aware of the delicate balance between the aesthetic of a design and the concept behind it that should be communicated. During the design process balancing these two things can be very difficult, especially when you are very deep in a project, but through the crits and the critical way of thinking these have fostered in me focussing on this problem has allowed me to become increasingly more effective in addressing it. This development can be best seen when comparing my reaction to studio briefs 01 and 05. My response to studio brief one was very thoughtful and heavily conceptual, but I was unhappy with it because the aesthetic and the way I had chosen to represent these concepts was not effective enough and far too obscure. Where as my response to studio brief 05 is pushing in the other direction, I have pinned down exactly what I wanted to communicate but I feel that the aesthetic has taken the upper hand, once again compromising the communication of the design. Although I have not yet found the balance between the aesthetic and the concept this module has allowed me to identify it and start to address it, as I will continue to do in the future.
Something I am less happy about in regards to my response to this module is the sometimes tentative link between my research and the final design. This tends to be because I think too deeply into the line of concept I am following and when I come to blog about the ideas that I have produced, it seems like a large jump has been made between times. This could in turn be because instead of physically doing and experimenting with a thought, I simply think more about it. To combat this I will need to act more quickly on ideas so that the development of a concept seems logical from the exterior of my brain. However, this module has brought this problem to my attention and in so doing, has given me the tools to solve it. So, overall I would say that this module has been a personal success, even if I am not 100% content with what I have produced, I am very pleased with how much my design process has improved and soon hopefully my designs will follow suit.