Play & Learn!

Happy 2015 and this is the first post for the year! More posts and excitement is the resolution for this year!

The August 2014 Contextual Studies group continued their exploration about the the many eccentricities about Art and Design in the industry. The survival of Art and Design is evident of the demands by the industry and the bold as well as risky steps taken by the designers themselves to present new concepts and ideas.

In Contextual Studies module, we continued to explore particular styles from particular designers and artists from different areas of the creative industries and to study it successes and shortcomings. The interviews conducted with these real practicing designers are done spontaneously with questions carefully thought about and selected in order to gain as much information and lessons about their experiences; either in work, life or academia. The students have have had a brief study about visual culture and some historical backgrounds about famous artists as well as the artist and designers whom they interviewed prior to obtaining the actual footage.

The purpose was to find some sense of relevance and some answers to their own questions about why should they study design what is the industry like. This required the students to make the journey to meet with the designers and artists face-to face and to interview them. The documentaries feature detailed and lengthy conversations but rich with information and it’s interesting to see their enthusiasm how relaxed they are with our students! The outcome was very encouraging! If you could take time to watch it please do! There will be more documentaries to come soon from the September 2015/Jan 2015 batch. Here’s the links to the videos. Enjoy!

I am a big fan of visual sketching! Bernie has cought my attention eversince I stumbled across an article about her in the Star Rage section. I am so glad that someone in Malaysia is really doing something about this! Here are links about Bernie Quah’s awesome Graphic Recording work below:

http://rage.com.my/sketchy-business/

http://rage.com.my/graphic-recording-timelapse-with-bernie-quah/

http://rage.com.my/sparking-creativity/

What if we used SCAMPER method to enhance a product and the product is ourselves. What will be become? This was one of our Foundation in Design assignment and the outcomes were figurines as the conceptual prototype.

Another batch and another trip to Refreshing Springs Resort! This time, more challenges and also more bonding time! Time was well spent by applying their creative minds to solve specific challenges throughout the trip. I decided to bring ideation and problem solving to nature in which all groups actively participated to apply their creative thinking knowledge and teamwork dynamics to create actual prototypes. Enjoy!

What an awesome experience! Our FID students did a great job! Working with Kakiseni was a really good learning experience!

We learnt so much from them and we do appreciate the encouragement and motivation given to our students. What our FID students usually do to spread their creative mayhem at the lakeside campus have now made their way to the heart of Kuala Lumpur! Kakiseni did a fantastic job organising such a huge event! They organise countless events every year and this time onwards, we will be in each other’s radar for future involvements! Follow their events here: http://kakiseni.com

Our documentary comprising of slides and some clips:

Two of our Diploma in Multimedia Design students, Nilanka and Sina have produced a sculpture in conjunction with Malaysia Day which was comprised of 4000 screws! I was motivated by their drive to make their vision materialise! Sleep was indeed a luxury! Below is the time-lapse of their work, created by Sina.

I really appreciate the Creative Team at Kakiseni and my colleague Natasha who always performed selflessly above and beyond the call of duty to always ensure that the students get the best creative exposure which they so deserve! I am also glad that the Taylor’s University has always been there to provide this platform for us to continually explore bigger and more diverse possibilities and always providing the support we need as a Design School.

Chess Pieces with Attitudes!

This was an interesting assignment! Each student was tasked to design their very own chess piece which not only related to the role of the actual piece itself but which also represented their own characters. Their chess pieces represented their characteristics and traits through unique modifications and adornment! The end result was amazing! All 32 pieces looked unique and different!

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Behold the Chess Board!

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This is one of Brian Eno’s beautiful pieces. It’s enthralling and does make you ‘escape’ as you just watch the planet from above and you would feel that the world seems smaller at the same time. Don’t try to figure anything out but just listen and observe. Just surrender and let your spirit take flight.

It’s comforting to know that a creative genius like Brian Eno, validates this fact. The fact is, that there is no right way of getting creative. If we can let ourselves go, and let go off the baggage of presumption, then we can open many other doors of possibilities. Each time I listen to this words, I can’t help but ponder and think about my own contribution to this world. The world of education and the many canvases ready to be painted on!  

Creative Thinking using the 8 Steps based on Dr. Keith Sawyer’s awesome book Zig Zag!

It all begins with the big question! This was a rewarding brainstorm session and most of them were getting introduced to the basics of ideation.

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Cute stuff! There were profound expressions about experiences, emotions, creativity, artistry among others. What is special is that, these journals aren’t merely a tool but these become interactive statements that affirms their belief and determination. I managed to spot these things as I interacted with them.

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They were given an assignment which is part of the important steps to creative thinking, which is the element of ‘play’. The assignment required them to create interactive pages as creatively as they could to communicate their selected interests. They could use many ways to do it, such through interactive storytelling, interactive artworks, pop-up style interaction and many others. Here are some highlights.

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Try this!  Amazing!

Chalk one up for the Latest short films for contextual studies this semester! The parallel pathways depicted in the films emphasized the consequences of bad choices. This also includes choices in career paths. The paths the characters chose regardless of different manifestos (which was represented as the surrealistic cults), resulted in different outcomes. All had dark endings and at times disjointed plots, which was debatable but were strong statements of the unpredictable aspects of being a designer in today’s unpredictable world. One can be trained as a designer but yet may be forced to make tough decisions or perhaps be a hybrid. If corruption gets in the way, then the consequences will be inevitable, hence the dark overtones.

Armed only with sheer determination to portray their message clearly, the project was a success! The students’ learned and experienced the meaning of contextual studies through the audio visual medium, particularly storytelling. The stories also portrayed the important aspects of teamwork, and was reflected in the making of the films.

Some scenes had interesting camera angles and high compositional value! Thanks to Principles and 2 Dimensional Design modules and Visual Culture, they applied these knowledge as much as they could to design the scenes. Skills on basic Photography from the first semester was evident as well.

Many of them are first time filmmakers and also potential ones! Not bad at all for first timers! The implementation of Noir style and elements was challenging for all of them but different groups had different approaches and that was attributed to the amount of research and referencing they have made earlier in the semester.

Overall, I was pleased with the outcomes of the project! This was another experiment applied into a pedagogical approach for the Contextual Studies module in our Foundation in Design programme. It is about using storytelling as a tool to create design statements by incorporating analogies, metaphors and gamification elements to make pedagogy more engaging, lively and interesting!

The full movies are rather large and currently being re-exported to be uploaded to youtube. once done I post up the links soon! But here are the great looking posters by each team.

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Please like the videos when you watch them in youtube 🙂

This video was made for the purpose of blurring the lines between geekness and ahem…; thus creativity vs practicality. How would you interpret this?

Here is the summary according to on of our student, Brian in regards to ‘Doorways’; “Doorways was about looking at life through a key hole getting a glimpse of what is to come. Call it peeping through the future if you want? This video lets people decide the kind of ending to their life and getting a glimpse of what is to come when making decisions.”

 

The final screening December last year was a great session! Each short film had good story-lines which was an interpretation of how competitive this world is. There were surreal elements, conspiracy and intrigue as the characters tried to confront the mysteries surrounding the situation. Here are the links to 2 full movies uploaded by 2 of our groups. Silent Murders and Malice.

 

Additional Posters. Please click on them to watch the trailers. The Screenings will be on the 19th December at Lecture Theatre 10.1476672_10202371127936730_1961707280_n (1)1492876_10201399502846614_166522710_nposterr

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