Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Birthday treats

Today is my birthday!
Although im not sure how to feel about it because i am turning 20 and exiting my teenage years, im not sure because i don't really regret getting older just the fact that im getting closer and closer to 'Real life' which seems a little scary. As well as it being my birthday its also an important day in regards to university as i have an important presentation today for H&C.

H&C is the contextual part of my studies at university and is mostly about the history of art and design and how it effects us still to this day. For the presentation everyone was given an artist or designer and asked to put together a 5 minuite talk on a piece of text and two images that were provided for us. For my talk i was given the textiles designer Bernat Klein who i actually didn't know anything about before hand..and to be honest i hadn't even heard his name before im not sure if i have researched enough for my presentation but its to late now.

Sorry for such a short post but i have to go now to do the presentation!

Saturday, 26 April 2008

Working like a coal miner

Last year on the run up to the end of my studies the work load seemed to creep up on me and jump out from a dark corner striking fear into my heart...and this year i have a feeling that its going to be pretty much the same sort of scenario. Although this time its entirely self inflicted because i have so many ideas for projects that i want to start that my main university project (this & that) is beginning to get put on the back burner. As a result im not sure how loyal i will be to updating this blog, one thing is for sure i think the posts with have to be a little bit more brief as each post can take up to 2 hours of my time if i am being particular about layouts and uploading photographs from the terrible halls Internet. I hope i am forgiven for this!

One of the hardest parts of the course at the moment is getting hold of the course tutor to ask him his opinion on what i am doing in this project, so even though the other tutors will help us, i could be veering dangerously off point. Is this a part of university that i havn't taken in? In regards to 'Self study' that is?

My research sketchbook is starting to take shape, at the moment im looking at various architecture and interiors to get some inspiration. Mount Fuji Architects created an interesting house exterior with the use of a punched stainless steel cover, i think this kind of 'punched' material could be used in my design, either through window covers or maybe room dividers. Anyway what you see above is an excerpt from that sketchbook, the drawing was just a little idea about the exterior of the box...although as i have already said im not sure if we are allowed to change the shape of the container that much. Id love to find a way to create an interesting shape whilst allowing more light into the container itself...and im sure i will come to a good conclusion after some more sketch booking.

Next week i am hoping to have both model making and Vectorworks tutorials but again the tutor hasn't been in for me to check.

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Visits etc

Ive had such a busy last few days, my friends from Milton Keynes came to visit over the weekend for my birthday (well pre-birthday) to see what Glasgow was like and where i live etc. It was so much fun although i do feel a little guilty as i only got a tiny bit of work done but im trying to make up for this by working as hard as i can this week.

One of the places that me and my friends visited whilst they where here was the Falkirk wheel, a boat lift used to transport canal boats from one lower pool of water to a higher (previously inaccessible) area. The design of the wheel itself is very impressive and very surprising in regards to how little sound it makes whilst turning. We didn't acctually ride on the wheel itself because tickets are too expensive but i would like to revisit one day and see what it is like.

Recently i re-discovered the work of an artist/restorer known as Huw Griffith who makes these amazing mirrors which are so simple but so intricate and beautiful. All he does is take an antique mirror that has lost some of the silver coating due to weathering or just 'old age' re-frame it or just restore the frame and put some wallpaper behind the mirrored surface and viola you have yourself an enthralling design piece.Its people like Huw that have inspired me to take old furniture and breathe life back into it just because i think...at the end of the day a restored piece has so much more character and attachment than any other piece of furniture that you could buy in a shop.

Project work is all going well, although i have put all serious thinking and space planning on hiatus and im just trying to gather interesting images and furniture pieces that i can use in my final designs.

Friday, 18 April 2008

A new flat

I have some very exciting news, I now have a flat for next year! The first down payment has been put through and i will have to finish of some paperwork and sign some forms and its ours, i really can't believe that its happening. The flat itself is so beautiful with 3 double bedrooms (not the largest that i have seen but big enough to be comfortable and snug) A large kitchen/diner with a kitchen nook and a dryer that is on a pulley. As well as this there is a Living room with bay windows and a huge storage cupboard all for £300 a month its such a good deal especially for the location too. I did take any pictures which i really regret now because i think that its going to seem like such a long time until august even though its only about 3 months away in reality.

I thought it would be interesting to upload the second part of the brief (also useful for me if i forget to bring my brief into the studio) as you can see its very specific and i will look forward to the workshops in Vectorworks and the model making tutor also. Especially since i found out that we won't be working with foam board!

Here is a copy of the floor plan that i have to work with, so far im just thinking about space and how it can be adapted to allow 2 people to work alongside each other with the minimum amount of conflict. How can i communicate harmony in difference?

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Crit etc

I had a review today of the nine photographs that i had selected for the first part of the breif, and surprisingly it went really well (i say surprisingly because i felt very unprepaired). I spent quite a large amount of time thinking about how i should display it and what photographs i would choose to show and finally as i said in my last post i started on the book. I started by seperating the book up into 9 sections and then masking taped the edges so that it made a thick barrier between each photograph. Im really happy with the final product, and so was the tutor i think i will be making a second version of this book with the 9 selected images that i have edited on photoshop.

As you can see in that picture my Holga Photos have come through so here are a couple that i found interesting. Tommorow i will post you my new brief and some priliminary ideas.

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Eco friendly

Its been quite tough to find information about Recycled Plastic boards and the stuff that i did find wasn't very aesthetically pleasing if im totally honest, which made me think where is the connection between Recylced Plastic Boards and locally produced honey? Is it something to do with the environment? the whole eco friendly slant that i will expect to hear more and more about on the course.

I also did a small bit of research into Locally Produced honey and found the contact details for a couple of beekeepers in Glasgow so i should be contacting them soon to see if i can get any information and or photographs of there set up. As i said before the only reocurring theme that i can see is being conciencious to your surroundings, recylcing and being green. So do i have to Communicate that i have regognised this theme in my design or just bear it in mind?

I cooked for some people tonight it was really fun, i allways like to make a special effort especially when it is to thank someone. I made Pea and Leak soup, Tomato Paella with ciabatta and ice cream with melon for desert. It went really well and tasted great, i was shocked that i made it even though most times i cook it turns out at least edible.

Later that night i started to work on a sketchbook, as i promised myself after watching 'The diving bell and the butterfly' that i would finish at least 1 sketchbook this term, but i can't really afford a proper moleskin so i decided to use an old book.

As well as having a more attractive cover i think that its nicer to work on pages from a book than the fresh white pages of a new sketchbook, ill also be using a book to display the 9 photographs i chose for this project.

Monday, 14 April 2008

Happy Days

The weather the last few days has been absolutely beautiful and it stays light till around 9pm now so there is more time to do things...although it still doesn't seem like there is enough time in a day to do everything that i want too. Yesterday i slept in till 12, tidied my room a little and then decided to go to Morrison's with my flat mate to stock up on food for visiting friends and the like and whilst picking my purchases i found a pack of 6 crumpets for 9p, so we decided to have a crumpet feast on returning to the flat.

I took a slightly M&S food picture to remember the delicious occasion and Kirsty kindly invited me to a Barbecue for dinner, we sat outside in the courtyard by the hosts house and ate a ton of food followed by mini muffins, mini flapjack and an episode of Planet Earth. That night though i didn't sleep very well at all and ended up browsing various blogs till the early hours of this morning and finally getting to sleep around 5am...i really thought i wasn't going to last through today without sleeping but i have, must be my reserve energy.

I got to the studio around half nine and chose my favourite images, with the help of Amata then put them up on a wall next to where i was sat so that i could consider them easier and have desk space free to write down ideas/sketch and the rest. Sorry for the bad picture i only had my camera phone today, i also found a picture of the Jim Lambie exhibition that i forgot i had taken.

I don't know if you can see very well in that photograph of the exhibition but all of that dark sand on the floor was just loose glitter and it went everywhere, i woke up the next morning with glitter in my hair and all over my face, im still finding bits now.

Later on this morning we got given the first part of the second part of the brief (how confusing!) which consisted of being given the 'two distinct business activities' that the first brief we were given talked about. I had my fingers crossed for an interesting combination and i think i was lucky in what i was given in the end. Anyway i have to design a space around:

Recycled Plastic Boards and Locally Produced Honey

This week is all about research into these particular fields so ive got three books on materials for construction/interior decoration and have found out where i can get information, possibly pictures, of bees and honey production!

Saturday, 12 April 2008


As you can see i got my photographs for my project, in the end i decided to have them developed in Boots for convenience purposes and it turned out to be cheaper than i thought it would be which was a bonus.

I will be using these four images for my project ive got 5 more images to find, most of which i think will be in the 72 that i have taken already but i want to do some sketches and drawings before i make a final decision and just end up with 9 photographs (i feel like i don't want to do this). Im really happy with how these 4 have turned out and im curious as to how they will effect the second part of the brief.

Friday, 11 April 2008

Jim Lambie and Visual Communication Yr 2

Few, i have only just this moment got back from a night of exhibition openings and a day of movie watching/sleeping for what seemed like an age. In total i went too 3 different shows, the first was held in the 'goldfish bowl' gallery space inside the vic. The exhibition itself was put together by Visual communication 2nd years and was just a little show of some of the work they had produced, my flat mate Kristy made a small drawing (i think it was drawn?) of a cat which happened to be my favourite piece out of everyone Else's creations for sure.

Next we went to the Goma of the opening of a collection of work by Jim Lambie, id never heard of him before this exhibition so i was curious to see what his work was like for a start the room was full of people talking really loudly so it was quite hard to consider his pieces and search for a meaning. In the end i wasn't sure if i liked his work but i did think the flooring was inspiring and it looked like he had put alot of thought into how it would be positioned. At one point i stood on one of his pieces without even realising and the curator shouted at me, i really didn't notice it was there but it did make me feel pretty bad.

An example of his flooring and work

Afterwords we caught a taxi to another part of his exhibition which happened to be at the end of the street i live on, I liked this stuff alot more because it was a little more subtle and there wasn't a ton of people to block my view of the pieces. The atmosphere was completely different too because everyone was so happy and more of an 'Art school' collection instead of the mix of middle class and high class people that the other exhibition crowd seemed to comprise of. Just before we left the show we bumped into Jim Lambie himself but he didn't really acknowledge us...not that i was offended i bet he met way too many new people that might just itching to get into his head.

Earlier on in the day i went out in the west end to take some photographs when i realise, after going through a whole roll of film, that it hadn't hooked onto the 'spikes' and so i took 36 blank pictures i felt so angry, i took the film out of the camera and stamped on it....then loaded up again and re-traced my steps to re-photograph everything that i found which took around 2 hours. Today i handed in the films to be developed and printed so there should be some pictures up tomorrow.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Busy days

The meeting with Rosemary Lucas was really interesting. Me the director of marketing, Hannah and Rosemary sat down in the tutors area of the refectory to have coffee and talk for around 40 minutes or so. To begin with the director asked a ton of questions about what the Art school was like when she studied here and what she was going to do on her visit to the UK, where she was staying and other things like that.

building and the building didn't even Its so strange to think that when she was studying here the whole way that they taught the course and even the buildings that they were in were different, for one the Bourdon building and the Foulis weren't even there as they were built after her graduation. Understandably she wanted to know a little about me and why i decided to come to art school, how im supporting myself and how im spending the money that she kindly donated. I answered the questions as thoroughly as i could but that didn't really leave much time for me to ask her questions about her business and moving abroad, i had so many questions. After the coffee i thought we were going to meet up with Drew (the head of interior design) and have some more time to ask and answer questions but for some reason i was omitted from the group, maybe Drew wanted to meet her without the distraction of a first year?

Before leaving she gave me her business card and asked me to keep in touch through e-mails so that she could know how i was doing and what the course was like etc. I will most probably direct her too this Blog because its a great way too see my progression and thought paths.

Over the past two days i have been walking around Central Glasgow taking photographs of "the interface between two distinct conditions" the best places i have found so far would probably be the building sites. If only i could get access to a site properly instead of just poking my lens through a gap in the fence and taking a photograph from a distance...maybe if i ask politely? I wonder if i can arrange a visit to a building site.

Ill be focusing on the west end and north side for the rest of the week, then i send off my films to be developed and have to wait approximately 5-6 days to get them back....5 films will be developed so that's around 132 photographs heading my way! I can't wait its going to be so good. After taking my pictures for the day i retired to Maeves house to have a quick tea then we decided to go to a twilight life drawing session. I hadn't drawn from a life model in a such a long time i was very worried about what quality of work i would end up producing but it went quite well, and i think if i continue to go i can improve my skills further but i can see i have alot to learn.

Monday, 7 April 2008

Term 3

So a new term has begun, another chance to sharpen my skills even further and this time with a focus on Interior Design! I couldn't be happier. When i got into the lessons today i was apparently a little bit too early, only two other people from my class were in but everyone turned up eventually. Then we were briefed on our next project but instead of boring you with the details i thought i would just give you a copy of the brief to look at...i apologise in advance for my handwriting and just incase you can't view the image i will basically be making photographs of Glasgow's urban environment. In this pictures i have to focus on Juxtaposition and contrast between materials, texture, height etc and then short list 9 images for my final collection which will inform the second part of the brief.

I got my loan in today so i could afford to buy some new film for my Pentax so i'll be taking photos on that, ill make sure to put them onto disc so i can upload a few without jeopardising the quality.

As well as starting a new brief i met Hannah from the marketing department at the GSA, she was even nicer than i expected her to be very easy to talk to and happy. She told me a little bit about the structure of the meeting with Rosemary tomorrow which made me more excited about getting to meet her! I tried to find out a little bit about her before the meeting but couldn't seem to find anything Hannah told me that she studied at the Art school in the late 60's and now owns tuns an Interior Design Company in Australia. I found a small comment that she left on a picture from a website called Treasured Places im already starting to feel as inspired as she sounds like in her post:

"My years at the GSA still resonate with some of the most influential moments of my life. The architecture was a mystery at the time, I 'discovered' it later with the benefit of broader experience of the built environment. Yet it had a profound effect in every aspect of my life. Most of all, it shaped my future in the practice of interior design and stimulated a fascination for all things 'designed' in our world."

I hope i can make a good first impression.

Sunday, 6 April 2008

Terry and Heatherington the vegetable saplings

I forgot how much i love to plant things, its really satisfying to put something dormant into the ground and watch it spring into life. The two plants above are an onion and a carrot that had already started to sprout in the kitchen of DG (The flat where my friends live) so we decided that it would be a nice thing to do to plant them and some other seeds and start a little garden. We have some more plans to start a herb garden in the new flat, maybe even a small veggie patch (space permitting)...thinking about it just makes me even more excited!

Tomorrow i start back at university; im really excited but at the same time extremely nervous because i will be specialising in Interior Design. The thing is i haven't really got to know the people on my course that well im sure i will grow to know them and get on with them im just not sure what i will say to them, and the new tutor, without making myself out to be the 'class clown'. Im very excited about having a new brief to work too. Just before the term finished someone told me a rumour about the project that we would be doing.

Its supposed to be a renovation project where we have to re-design the interior space of a mobile home for a couple. The only other thing i know about this is that the career of the couple will come into play when we have to decide on what to do with the design and there are a few set rules about the space that we are required to make. I guess i will find out tomorrow!

In other news, i love drawing childishly

Saturday, 5 April 2008


After being so excited about the films that i got out from the library neither of them worked properly, one flew over the cuckoos nest was scratched so it stopped playing halfway through and 'The world' refused to play on my PS2 because of the region difference which i didn't even know the film had. I will have to watch them another time...when i get the chance that is!

One of the many things that i have planned for the next few months is to collect some pieces of furniture and decoration for the flat. Some time last year i came across a record cabinet on the street near my flat, i thought it was too good to throw away (and it was going to be because it was next to some rubbish bags) so i brought it back with the intention to restore it. Whilst in Milton Keynes i came across some Glass Knobs that would suit the finished style of the cabinet better than the one handle it had when it was found.

At the moment i use it to store sketchbooks, sewing materials and fabric but hopefully i would like to fill it with records to put on whilst making dinner or when im working on some sketchbook with my friends.

The photograph on top of the cabinet was also found on the streets of Glasgow, on a bin! I really don't understand why people would through away perfectly salvageable things that with a little TLC could be easily a great addition to any home. You can also see my lovely Film Pentax, given to me by my dad a 50's egg cup, some felt pebble work, found marble/tiles, charity shop glass, ceramic elephant, slide (with pictures of chairs on it) and 2 boxes which i tend to fill with things that don't really have a place in my room.

The perspective book has some great drawings explaining how to draw in perspective, i hope to show you some of my attempts at perspective soon.

Friday, 4 April 2008

Flat pictures

Here are a couple of the pictures of the flat viewing that i promised you ages ago, as you can see the quality is terrible but i think it gets the point across? I really liked the ceiling rose, but that won't sway me to pay the huge amount of rent they wanted for this tenement and after all alot of places have ceiling roses here!

Im getting more and more frustrated with the flat hunting situation because of the constant rejection in regards to finding somewhere to let for August/September time...i really want to get it out of the way but i have a feeling we might have to wait till then to find somewhere which will be such a pain. Me, Maeve and Heather went to view a flat today near Kelvingrove Park, it turned out to be a basement flat and really wasn't the kind of thing we were looking for but i think it did help us realise how important some aspects of our 'ideal' flat are such as light and windows in the kitchen and bathroom.

Today i got some books out from the library; Perspective for interior designer, Minimum space Maximum living and a book about T-shirt design (because hopefully im going to start up a small online business selling some designs). I also got out a couple of films to watch tonight as i am having a productive night in, well to think about things and get some headspace at least. The first is 'One Flew over the Cuckoo's nest' and the second is 'The world' im really excited about both!

On Monday i have a meeting with the marketing director for the GSA about Rosemary Lucas, im very excited!

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Socializing is lively

Sorry about no posts for a few days, i havn't had access to the internet but i have been keeping up by writing a 'blog prep' on my computer so i can copy it straight onto here. Tommorow i will post the flat viewing pictures and some other things!

“Monday, the brightest and most radiant day that I have had since being back in Glasgow. Baring in mind that I have been back for only 3 days (not including Monday) this is not a very large achievement. Heather contacted me quite early on in the day asking weather I would be up for meeting for tea/coffee and to take some photo/visit some museum. We ended up meeting in a CafĂ© called offshore, which incidentally happened to be the place where we decided for final that we would be living together next year along with Maeve.

After catching up we went for a walk around Kelvingrove park then along great western road and came up with the great idea to make Carrot and coriander soup for dinner along with homemade bread so stopped off at Roots and Fruits to pick up the ingredients we needed.

Jump forward a few hours and we sat down to dinner and watched Poppy Shakespeare, an interesting one off drama on Channel 4 following the story of a girl who had been institutionalized for 8 years of her life and her companionship with Miss Shakespeare (a wrongfully diagnosed patient). I enjoyed the idea of the drama but the characters came across a little too two dimensional, Heather had a good point when she pointed out that the way they presented themselves when they were ‘sane’ and ‘insane’ was terribly stereotypical to the idea of insanity.

We basked in the glory of our dinner some more then tried to eat some strawberry cheesecake which was still frozen, and discovered that frozen strawberries taste really nice…well I did at least.

When poppy Shakespeare finished we decided to watch ‘The diving bell and the butterfly’”

I have to say its one of the most inspiring films that I have seen! A real ‘Do SOMETHING with your life’ sort of film…it bought me close to tears a few times because its such a powerful story. I won’t write about it only recommend it and link you too this preview.

After watching the film we decided to make a list of things that we wanted to do, so here is my list in no particular order (watching the film its easy to understand why we did this):

1. Learn to use my vocabulary
2. Continue to Blog
3. Finish a sketchbook (because I have started several)
4. Start a Film society (with heather)
5. Find a job
6. Draw more perspectives
7. Do more things like baking bread
8. Get an Overdraft
9. Commit to going to China to learn Mandarin
10. Flat hunt
11. Write letters – Nan and Grandad, Laura
12. Learn to customise and take in clothes
13. Start writing a book