Sunday, 27 December 2009


As my hard drive recently passed away, the photos I took in New York were thankfully saved on my laptop. So I thought how better to cheer myself and reminisce in what was such a fantastic experience.

New never been nor did I have any expectations was a truly magnificent city that had worlds within worlds of endless touristy and off the beaten track experiences to discover. We only had 5 full days so we jam packed as much in as we could.

We couldn't have asked for better weather, cold but brilliant sunshine greeted us everyday as we walked around the city. Staying in Uptown New York was a perfect location, 10 minutes from Times Square and looking onto Central Park was amazing...the view was priceless!
Our itinerary included:
  • Wednesday
    Times Square and Broadway walk
    Smoothie cocktails in a Broadway bar
    An early night for the next day.
  • Thursday
    Walk through Central Park
    Went to several Galleries:
    -Cooper Hewitt Gallery
    -Met Gallery
    -Neure Gallery
    -Museum of Modern Art Gallery
    Sushi with a crazy but lovely American lady.
  • Friday
    Went up the Rockefeller Centre
    MoMa Gallery
    Walk down 5th Avenue saw:
    -Grand Central Station
    -Chrysler Building
    Went to China Town for food.
  • Saturday
    Went to Central Park again, found the Zoo and Ice ring.
    Took the subway to Ground Zero
    Took a ferry ride to Staten Island, saw The Statue of Liberty.
    Took subway to Brooklyn, went to Williamsburg, visited Vintage Shops
    Took an extra long walk over Brooklyn Bridge.
  • Sunday
    Took subway from Times Square to Chelsea
    Found the High Line
    Went to an Artists Book Fair
    Went to Hells Kitchen Flea Market
    Saw Mama Mia on Broadway
    Went for drinks with the group.
  • Monday
    An early start to get packed up for the flight home
    I walked to find Dylan's Sweet store
    Flight home.

It really was a fantastic holiday and I had so many inspirational moments to help with work and life. It was great to explore with friends and to see what most people haven't.

Here are some of the highlights:

Times Square.

Subway Advertisements.

Brooklyn Bridge .

The view from the top of the world: The Rockefeller Centre.

We are The Statue of Liberty.

Installation art for Campbell's Soup.

The ice ring in Central Park.

The largest children's book.

Our view from the YMCA Hostel.

The Financial District.

A beautiful man hole cover.

The magnificent Toys R us.

Grand Central Station.

One of the lakes in Central Park.


Whilst researching for flash mobbing I came accross these poster designs, they are very basic with little or no information on what is the event.
As flash mobbing is usually viral: social networks, email, texts I suspect that the actual poster is not their priority, however I may make mine the main focus as I see the event being organised for around university.
Questions of: What, Where and When seem to sum up all that needs addressing.

Saturday, 26 December 2009


Manchester in all its glory on a bright and snowy day.
I really do love the atmosphere of Manchester, I spent quality time trying to absorb it and everything around me.

Whilst looking for a number, I came across this random space in the Yellow pages.
I have never seen it before but I thought what a genius and amusing idea, I just really liked it.

This is taken in Victoria train station, Manchester.
It reminded me of my proposal for the personal project.
Communication is the biggest, most important aspect in our society and it should be respected and understood. This is advertsinig a safer environment for everyone, physical abuse is not tolerated on train lines.


Sadly the bad news is that at the weekend my precious hard drive died. Unexpecdedly it died and after taking to a repair shop it is literally brain dead, the work is still there but it needs to be recovered by a data specialist....It literally had the past 3 years of my life and second year work....everything. Thank god third year work was saved on my laptop and usb stick.
I have never felt so destroyed or sick with myself, so I warn all of you

The good news.... I bought a Mac, and it will arrive to me on the 6th January.
Money well spent!


Over the festive period most of us will most likely be spending it doing uni work. The joy of relaxing and spending quality time with the family will have to wait till next year, as now I am wayyyy to busy.
Projects to complete by January 20th:
  • Kino4 poster developments
  • Competition Brief re-work, consider continuing the balloon idea including flash mobbing. Set the event up which will become the poster, I could even stage the event in Manchester with friends showing the whole stages from start to finish.
    Flash mobbing was recommended by Hitch, after looking it up on Google, basically someone sets up an event e.g. 'meet at such a place, such a time', people would turn up and do something e.g. New York Grand Central Station Freeze (see link)
  • Do personal project, make cutting edge graphics.
  • Finish essay, re-structure and design.
  • Amnesty Project. Me and Sarah discussed this before we finished, we are going to work with the idea we had, do poster designs for it then meet first week back in January to share designs.

Could that be it....probably not.
I will just have to see how it all goes.

Hopefully I can make progress and be ready for the big deadline in Jan.


As part of my personal project, I had a week prior to my PDP to visit speech therapists. These visits would confirm my doubt of where I wanted to take the project.

I had been in contact with the Speech Therapists at Tameside Hospital, my visit there was eventful. Mainly they deal with Dyspraxics patients, whom basically are elderly and they have to teach them language with what they already have, rather than teaching a young child from the beginning. So in many ways they couldn't help me, but they did refer me to a Paediatric Speech Therapist, Alex Wormall and a therapist with an articulation point of view, Julie Hand. I have consequently been in contact and a joint meeting has been arranged for January.
(To be continued).

They did also refer me to get in contact with the Deaf Society in Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University Speech Therapist Tutors and Student whom may want to help.
So off I went with my work.

I got in contact but unfortunately the Therapist team at MMU have not got in contact, I therefore will pursue that in January.

The Deaf Society in Manchester have been fantastic. I visited them on Monday the 14th and the team were very eager to help out. I talked to a member of the Sensory team, Sarah and an actual Lip Speaker, Beverly.

  • The advice they gave me was essential, maybe alittle too informative for what I want to produce. They recommended talking to Hearing Therapists, Audiology and visiting clubs for the hard of hearing and people who suffer from Tinnitus. This way I would be able to speak to patients to get their opinion.
  • What I also am concerned about is the fact that since the 1980's there has been NO knew material on Lip Reading/Speaking for patients or Therapists. What you will find is most material to be outdated and well past its sell by date. Thus I want to re-design and re-introduce it into society. Making people more aware that people sometimes cannot hear you or understand you.
  • They understood that I have only touched upon a massive subject so some of my research is not correct. They were very pleased and interested in what I had to show and where I could take it.

Extremely eye opening for my personal project.

After speaking to Liz and Hitch I need to be aware of and designing cutting edge graphics. So for January deadline I am mainly going to focus on the graphical aspect of where it could potentially go e.g. an interactive digital poster that could connect and pick up conversations, imitating what people are saying but showing it in the shapes I have created.
Thus, the tag line 'can you understand...because I can't', making society more aware of the problems deaf people have.

PDP Evaluation.

Tuesday 15th December 2009.
Having spent the last several weeks on Silence Part 1&2 and the Competition Brief it was time to discuss my progress. I wanted to mainly ask about developments for my Kino4 Poster Designs, as I wasn’t sure if any were necessary, also, comments on the Competition Brief hand in and my plans for the Personal Project.

As Liz has been my main point of call all term, she already new the work I was to discuss. For Kino4 posters she pointed out that in my reasoning for making them more conceptual, I had lost the essence of each film thus they all had become to uniformed. She advised to work on bringing more focus of each film in, still keeping my logo design and colour scheme as this would allow viewers to recognise when a knew film was being showed.

For Silence Part 1&2, all is going well and I feel like I want to close this chapter and move on now. No problems there!As this is what I want to continue for my Personal Project, I wrote two Learning outcomes to justify why I want to do it. I have stated that I want to not only produce a graphic poster of the Lip reading mouths, making it more interactive and re-introducing it in to society, but I want to create a booklet for a deafened/deaf person. After speaking with Liz, she confirmed my doubt that I need to illiterate a “cutting edge design” at all times. I must not forget this; otherwise it will not be graphically strong enough. I agree with her.The Competition Brief poster I handed in was not what Liz expected, as she had seen my initial ideas she thought I was going to create a more emotional piece that would connect with the audience, instead she thought my design was too obvious and biblical. I was more than defensive. For me, I had created a scene around a strong visual; I did however see her point and she preferred the ‘balloon idea’ which I did want to develop but as I new I would be able to create the image I wanted I pursued another idea.

Overall, this term has gone more superbly than expected. I have had a great time doing what I love and exploring areas I have not considered previously. My progress and studentship is one that the tutors recognise, and I only hope I can continue what I love to do and just do more of it. A great start to what will be a sad but memorable final year.

Monday, 14 December 2009


Also this week, speaking to Hitch and Hamish Muir it was advised to re-do the Mechanical shapes so they are more symmetrical and official looking. (Prior to this they were hand-drawn).

What I have noticed through-out this project is the development of my skills on Illustrator.
It is so true when people tell you 'the only was to really learn a program is to spend time on it'.
I now feel confident on the program and are learning essential skills necessary for now and in the future. I am not saying I am a whizz, but I am definitely proud of my determination and the time spent.

These are the final mechanical drawings comprised on Illustrator.
(enlarge to see in detail)

SILENCE: Revisited

As part of the Personal project I wanted to continue my idea of visual communication: lip reading. After speaking to Hitch he advised that I spend this week planning and deliberating if I saw the potential for it to be worth a 3 week project. As he said if the tutors didn't see it viable, it would look like I'd just continued the work not finished from the start of term.

Basically the brief I am setting myself for this week (8th-15th DEC) before my PDP includes:-

Brief: Visual Language.

Take my initial ideas and show them to Speech Therapists.
-Get feedback
-Ask if actually factual
-Where can I take it now? Is a poster needed to promote lip reading?

What material is available for deaf/hard of hearing patients?
What do Speech Therapists do/hand out to patients?

Visit The Deaf Society Manchester.
Visit Elizabeth Gaskell Speech Therapy Department.
Get more info on what available.

This will then allow me to take the info to my PDP to show the potential of what I want to achieve. I have from the very beginning felt very strongly about my project, in the first stage the research and personal development of third year has made a massive impact on what I want to do in the future. I feel like this is where I strive to do more, the aspect of getting a brief, fully understanding and taking the time to get to grips with it is where my skills excel.

But that was then, now I want to take it the next stage further and allow it to develop into a promotional piece and information booklet on Visual Language. All the material for patients was last designed in 1978 and looks very out dated, it needs a re-vamp.

A new design that not only will help patients but will make everyone aware of it.

I had a dream.....

Last night I woke from a terrible dream, I do not know where it stemmed from or why I am taunted by it but it has made me realise that it is my subconscious telling me to act...I need to act...

EXHIBITIONS: Archiving time and place

Conor McGrady

Mary McIntyre

Rita Duffy

Sandra Johnston

Conor McGrady

Conor McFeely

The Holden Gallery has been home to 'Archiving time and place' exhibition for the last four weeks. It is based on artists from Ireland and how their experiences have influenced their artwork. I have been invigilating the exhibition along with a few peers and it has been a great place to do some of my own work whilst being in the vicinity of artists.

One of my favourite artists was Conor McGrady whom did the two Gouache on paper pieces and Mary McIntyre. The exhibition was full of history and memories, mostly haunted with some form of war and hatred but it was very interesting not only sit and stare at, but to absorb the sounds that some artist's work included.


The projection onto the cast knees were shadows of twitching and movement.
The artist 'Dan' used his own body to record the movements.

The figures were static and moved ever so gracefully.

I did foundation with this artist and he still couldn't explain what it was all about.
It basically is showing the use of 'angles'.

Hand sewn type onto canvas.

Ryan Lockley - Spray paint image.

The exhibition is a way of teaching the younger years how to set up a show.
The Holden Gallery is a lovely space and especially with the Link Gallery it really flows through the Art School.

Although I find this type of art very abstract and full of expression, I sometimes question the work as I never really understand it. Obviously we are all creative and can see the potential in it but seriously what is it all about?...

The hot toddies were amazing though! Thanks guys.


If you haven't seen the knew Orange advertising I seriously don't know how.
It is everywhere "You're Covered" campaign is advertising 3G and speaks to a vast target audience... the language they use is aimed at everyday people and it is quite easy to relate too. They have targeted pretty much everyone... from the 'old man' to the 'two of you holding hands' it is a very nice typographical campaign.

I know at this time of year Coke advertise but in a 'oh so secretive way', but this year I have seen more than ever. Only last night, in a 3mile radius I saw 5, yes 5 billboards of the 2010 campaign "The holidays are coming".

It is a sweet holiday reminder, in a very christmassy manner but so elegantly executed.
Coke never seen to fail, but I wonder if this year they are having to advertise more... has the credit crunch hit their sales too?? One can only wonder...

Friday, 11 December 2009


This is my final idea, the concept is based on a simple quote that I created:


The quote represents all that I perceive to be as 'now'.
From the very beginning I wanted it to be a tone of voice and personality, that not only I could connect with, but it could connect with young people all over.

I wanted it to concentrate on the living...this moment now!
As this is the most important aspect.
It is about addressing young people, to reassure them that what is now wont always be.

I wanted it to capture 'hope', 'reassurance', taking into consideration what young people are feeling now and the problems/issues we face.

Its about resisting how other people act, how to think differently.

The design highlights a dream like state.
The sun setting emphasises closure and a new day.
It seems to be idyllic, a scenic place that habours no issues or fears but looks forward to what will happen now.

The text you might wonder cannot be read clearly. This is not accidental.
I didnt want it to shout out, what I have to say is meant to reach out to that person, individally.
Speaking to them, and them only.

I did have a problems with printing as what looks good on screen never prints the way I want it too. So I have had to alter the background to make it easier to 'find' the text.
But, I am very happy with the outcome, it sums up everything I wanted it to be.
Not only have I learnt more Illustrator skills, but its taught me how to critique my own visual design skills and I hope the tutors can see my potential within this.

RESISTANCE: Up, Up and away...

Last weekend has come and gone, but for me I really knuckled down and did some very productive work. I already have my final idea and could clearly see the potential in it, but I couldn't help think that I wanted to do something...more...interactive.

This idea of it being more interactive stemmed from ways in which us, as young people can get to together more. Be a community. Be a voice. The brief of 'Resistance' in this particular idea is based on balloons and what they represent. For me, balloons capture my childhood and similar memories of pure happiness, as they aimlessly float and become their own person high above you.

I really liked the idea of people attaching views or memories to them, then they would be released. Symbolising, the need for people to express themselves, resisting against terrorism, graffiti whatever it may be. We don't know where they go, or who reads them...does God?

However, the only problem I had was that they were not Helium. So they flopped and didn't really fly away! If I were to continue this idea I would have to get Helium balloons to get the correct image.

I placed them in the actual environment.
It does look alittle too prepared but the balloons wouldn't have stayed there.

This is the viewpoint through the balloon with the sky/background in situ.
I thought this was beautiful, at this time of day the sun was setting on a crisp and sunny day.

I really like how translucent the balloon becomes.
Very effective.

All the images above were taken in my local park.

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