• The Disruptive Designer

Disruptive Vacation Period, Reflection Collaboration & Networking. Part 2 of 2


Before I left for Cuba, I had a supervisor meeting with Robin, where we discussed my work and direction forward. It was agreed that I need to chose a theme to base my work on, as it would help to give it more focus. The Morris and Carpenter philosophy is a solid underpinning and from this key principles, approaches, methodologies can be explored. However, given Kinglfy tailoring is potentially offering personalised tailoring through visual manipulation, each client will have different demands, resulting in many themes being addressed in years to come e.g. sports, animals, mechanics, space etc.

For the Hand and Lock and my final project, I need to think of a theme to use which showcases manipulation possibilities.

Referring back to Morris and Carpenter, both were environmentalists and were very much inspired by the world around them. Their work had meaning and therefore purpose.

I would like to interpret the world around me with these principles in mind. I have decided to tackle the social issue of Littering as my theme, highlighting the consequences of littering and thus creating discussion pieces. I would like the pieces to not only grab attention and intrigue, but they might not be recognisable as litter upon first look.

Man made rubbish living with nature!

Research Methodologies:

My first idea was to look around my local village to identify littering. I didn't have to go far to find examples.

Littering was everywhere!

I thought more about how I could document not only the rubbish found, but also where it was found, leading me to experimenting with one of my GPS running APPS. Using the RELIVE app, I document my runs allowing me to view them as videos. There is an option to upload images taken along the route. Using this method could I document where the rubbish was found in the context of the environment?

This method works particularly well and has given me some ideas for final outcomes.

I have several runs coming up over the year (marathons and half marathons) it would be a great opportunity to document the rubbish along one of these. Windermere marathon I am attempting in May and voted one the UKs most scenic of courses. Highlighting rubbish around the Lake could make for a very interesting narrative!

Expanding the scope of Research

Staying with my passion for running, health and fitness, I wondered whether social media could be used to gather primary research from like minded runners around the UK?

I posted on a community running Facebook group page the following:

Here are some of the photos sent to me from across the country:

Over 199 comments received from runners, all concerned and disheartened about the amount of littering in their local community. Images sent through covered a wide national geographical spread.

Collaboration Opportunity

I would like to turn these images into possible print ideas of various styles, ranging from Morris and McQueen to Line art and collage styles. As before with the hand embroidery (part 1) this is the perfect opportunity to source a like minded graphic designer, whose style of work compliments my own and Kingfly Tailoring.

I have decided to approach a former fashion student of mine, whose work I am impressed by. Helen McClafferty.

Initially I am going to ask her to produce a pdf of possible theme directions based on my research imagery and images of my embroidery canvas's to date. From the results I will consider commissioning more print designs which I can manipulate and turn into possible embroidery concepts or other.

3 weeks after me approaching Helen, I received a 17 page pdf of concepts directions for my review, consisting of 16 differing styles. The cost for each print produced would be at a cost of £25 each.

The following images are from the pdf...

The concepts presented show a variety of different approaches and styles. The majority I happy to explore further and take into designs. I have decided to ask Helen to produce 30 designs in total, using primary research of my own, the lonely goats submissions and her own. I will use the designs to further manipulate and develop, taking into digital embroidery, pyrography and even external shell ideas (digital printing). Once I receive a graphic design I will look at commissioning external digital printing on most suitable cloth. These samples will be experimented further combining various processes to create exciting and inspirational images. I may also look at creating my own using Helens as a starting point.

Collaborating with a graphic design will save me considerable time, which can be reallocated to other aspects of the business and MA.