"DPS, finding courage?"
Illustration and Visual Media
When I started looking for courses two years ago I tried to stay realistic with my expectations, choosing something I knew I was good at, which judging by the opinions of others was always drawing. Although I love what I do and would never trade the ability to visualise my ideas in the way I can, I always felt like I was missing something in my practice, something I was truly passionate about. When I was very young I would fill stacks of sketchbooks with fashion designs, wished for a sewing machine for Christmas and my mind was set on becoming a fashion designer. But when you grow up and real life hits you, with all its expectations and conservative career councillors, dreams become seemingly unattainable. I was simply too scared to follow a career I did not feel prepared for and that was so intimidating. So instead I chose a course that seemed open minded enough to give me a chance of figuring out what I truly wanted.
So the first year of my UAL experience consisted of a battle with myself, trying to forget about my fashion dreams and focus on what everyone told me I was good at, mostly graphic novels and story based illustration. But my passion for clothes and the fashion industry as a general slowly came creeping back into my thoughts and by the time my first summer at UAL was over I had found new ways of integrating the concept of fashion into my works and essays, such as discussing the interdisciplinary collaborations between fashion houses and artists.
Technology is a huge part of being a creative practitioner these days, not only in context of the medium we use but in terms of how all creative disciplines are closely linked with each other, interacting with and building onto one another. Social Media plays a huge role in how I understood that just because I was studying an illustration based course did not mean I could not get involved with another creative industry such as fashion. A good personal example of this is my experience of participating in @theuniqueillustraion, an instagram page which hosts illustration flashmob for which all participants post their fashion illustration works for a specific topic on the same date and time. It introduced me to the world of fashion illustration, a practice that was critical in my second year at UAL and gave an opportunity to keep developing my expertise in the field of fashion. On the other hand seeing how interconnected everyone in the industry is can be quite intimidating, which is the main downside of social media in my opinion and something that can easily discourage an introverted person like myself.
Now that DPS has started I find myself at a critical point once again, but this time I have gathered enough courage, experience and self-believe to be brave enough to stick to my true passion and at least get a start on it. My ambitions have definitely changed since the start of our very first DPS sessions in the way that I have developed personal goals such as constructing a substantial body of work relevant to a fashion portfolio and getting more acquainted with the practical side of fashion designing. My expectations however have gone through change as well. I have had difficulties finding positions and getting answers on my applications with my mind set on finding internships relevant to the fashion industry such as art directing studios across London. But if my experience at UAL and the DPS program has taught me one thing so far, it is that every opportunity life trows at you can help achieve your goals even if it does not seem relevant at first. And no hour working on your creativity is wasted as everything is so interconnected with each other. And I have finally realised that no matter what will happen this year I will find my way into the fashion industry and be a part of it someday. With this in mind I will be more open regarding any job opportunities that are presented to me and keep working hard to make this year the most life changing and productive experience possible. I am currently in the process of hopefully securing an internship as well as some freelance opportunities that are all linked to the subject of fashion in some way. I am planning to get my portfolio printed soon to deliver it to some of the places I have not received answers from yet and hope this will give me more chances at the jobs I would like to do.
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