• The Disruptive Designer

First Formative Assessment

13/11/2018 - 10am Bonington MA Studio.

Sean Prince and Katherine Townsend + 2 MA students (F/T)

This F/A consisted on displaying work carried out to date in the studio, using a work space and a 10 minute verbal presentation with Q&A from Sean and Katherine at the end. We were asked to prepare a presentation to explain what our MA is about.

My prior understanding of the formative assessment was that it was casual and nothing to worry about, however I did notice on the day that both Sean and Katherine used an assessment table looking at 3 specific elements of the presentation itself. As I had not met Katherine before I did ask the question "Would you like me to explain a little about me before I go into talking about my masters", on the thinking that it may make more sense as to some of my decision making along the design process. By chance this satisfied one of 3 assessment categories which focused on context. I need to look into why I was not aware of the assessment categories before the presentation as it would have influences the content and narration. I suspect I have overlooked an email or not looked properly on the presentation information on NOW.

My verbal narration was rehearsed in my head the previous day and on the way to Nottingham and presenting on the day also helped to clear in my head the multifaceted aspects of my project proposal and the linkages. Concerns I had regarding clarify of intentions were dismissed as all observees were able to understand my concept and direction. It would have helped to clear state the research question at the beginning of the presentation and not state it when questioned at the end, this would also have helped with setting the context and what the big picture was. This was an oversight on my behalf.

Reading the research question and supporting questions from my printed proposal (which was a couple of weeks old) made me realise how much my project has evolved, as some of the questions were no longer relevant and there were now more suitable questions that could be asked, particularly on the subject of hybrid craft. I will need to revaluate my project proposal.

A couple of designers, business and art movement were recommended for me to look into, all deemed relevant to my intent, however looking at the image of my notebook above, I am questioning dadaism and wonder if it was actually cubism that was recommended?

I mentioned the new 3rd element that was introduced into the original project after my supervisor meeting a few days prior (automotive modification) and it was well received. It was suggested I expand this to look at 3D digital visualisers e.g Optitex or Clo3d as this really push the concept of hybrid design and digital artisan direction and could totally challenge not only design practices but business models.


A Swedish fashion label was recommended to research.

We also discussed a narrative case study for one or more of the designs, putting theory into practice and thus producing a themed personal outcome. This was something I had previously considered and will keep this as a possible option for consideration. I am happy for the project to evolve and do not want to close the door on this idea at present.

From now until Xmas my teaching demands at SHU have seriously intensified, resulting in a lack of free time available for my masters. This down period could be a good time to experiment with the Clo3d software as I find learning CAD is short bursts and "playing" helps in my learning and understanding. "Coffin Draping" on 1/2 scale mannequins may also be achievable as again this is possible in short bursts, therefore if I can combine the two it would help to compare and contrast draping by hand and on screen. This also raises the question of the relationship between technology and the designer.

This period can also be used to slow down and reflect on the journey so far, approaching it again in the near future with fresh eyes and mindset. I am conscious not to get too close to the project that is prevents me seeing the bigger picture or not wanting to make any changes or take advice/criticism.