A term of letterpress
What new agency has come from a complete global reset?
In this essay I will be exploring the idea of how the global pandemic has changed how creatives work and furthermore my experience with working either remotely or from a studio.
During the first lockdown I was situated at home with limited resources for creativity such as my laptop and camera so I spent a lot of time doing photography of my surrounding areas and trying to incorporate them into my projects, I found this calming and helped me to get out of the house and away from my computer screen. Alongside uni work I was attending professional practice online classes which were difficult to concentrate on in contrast to sitting in a real lecture hall but I fully enjoyed hearing from people who had been working in industry and inspired me to keep working. Moving back to london at the end of summer was a strange feeling but it was nice to be back in the city and to start my professional practice year.
My first and longest running internship has been working with Alan Kitching, a Letterpress and typography designer who has been my inspiration for years, the opportunity to work with him was exciting enough but what I have experienced is life changing. When I first started working with him I was quite shy and nervous as you would be in the presence of your favourite designer but I quickly adapted to his analog ways of working and understanding how the process of letterpress works. Alan has things he likes to do traditionally such as creating layout sheets using inked blocks and tracing paper to get an accurate result and how to apply ink to the blocks to create his well known style so I believe I have learned a lot from him in these last few months. It has got to the point where I am working on his commission prints almost solely on my own. Working with Alan has taught me a lot about printmaking but also I have increased my knowledge on typography and traditional methods behind it and this is definitely something I will be taking forward into my future work and I am very thankful to have had this experience.
After working with Alan so much I wanted to experiment with letterpress more for myself so I set a project to hand print christmas presents for my family and alan was kind enough to let me use his studio. For the first time doing this kind of task purely on my own and following a layout sheet I had prepared I was very pleased with the results it yielded and I shall be experimenting more with printmaking of all kinds in my work from now on. It has been an amazing experience working with Alan and I hope in the new year he will let me continue to work with him.
When it comes to working from home I have faced a few difficulties but it has mostly been quite easy, A lot of the work I produce is digital poster/ book cover designs so working remotely has been no issue, at the start of november I was given the opportunity to work with 2 MA script writers and produce a poster for there tv shows they were presenting to big companies such as netflix and amazon. Working remotely made this task simple as I did not need to travel to meet anyone and was able to use my own computer, furthermore I was able to converse with the MA students via zoom calls which made it easy to share my digital work over screen sharing and make minor adjustments as the call took place.
My first poster was called Peller which is based on the folklore of witches surrounding the cornwall area. Katie (the script writer) wanted the poster to incorporate a mysterious house overlooking a cliff so I used photoshop and some 3D modelling programs to achieve this and at her request I did 3 different posters from 3 camera angles. The angles were top down, profile view and front view and we settled on the side view being the most fitting for the script she has produced. To further the project I used sticks to make a typographical logo to fit the poster/ scripts aesthetic and from the general response I'd say it was a success. This project was very useful because it allowed me to experience working with a client with different ideas and how I can adapt myself to working from home.
My last poster was called Memento Mori which is a story based on venice during the plague, The overall mood given to me by lola (script writer) was that it was a dark drama so my first initial idea was to have the poster be quite ominous in a similar way as my previous poster. I would achieve this by using a single light source to bring out the surroundings followed by a plague doctor who would be holding it. On this project I was accompanied by a classmate Shazia who helped me with composition of the text and also designed the logo which tied the design together nicely. Working remotely and conversing with lola and shazia was very simple and took me only a week or 2 to produce the final outcome. I was very happy with how the poster turned out and it allowed me to explore new ways of working.
In conclusion the DPS year so far has been a good experience even though there has been a global pandemic and I am excited to see how 2021 will develop.
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