January Mayhem: Part 2

Tuesday 19th of January

Today we officially received the brief for the EMP. The main difference which was stressed between the FMP and EMP was the need to produce a publication in addition to back up work and display books. The publication should be something well designed which can sit in your portfolio for job interviews/MA interviews. From today I got the impression that even though I have a lot of things happening at the moment which are detracting from the EMP, I am a bit ahead of the game at the moment. Over Christmas I tried to firmly stick to the tutors recommendations that we should have a chosen, final EMP topic, by the time we get back. From today it seems that only now are most people even thinking what they are going to do. Here are some notes I took from today…

I spent the rest of the day resuming work on my dissertation, because the deadline was coming up on Thursday this week. Upon returning to Bournemouth I had to finish going through a few stray bits of research. I was able to collect most of the additional research over Christmas (based on recommendations from tutorials) but there were only so many books I could fit into my suitcase. Now I had to really focus on finishing the essay: restructing it, incorporating the new research and just clarifying my argument overall.

Wednesday 20th and Thursday 21st

I began feeling ill on Wednesday and it quickly became clear I wouldn’t be able to finish my dissertation on time because of it. I filled in a mitigation formed supported by a doctor’s note. I will have to wait and see if it gets approved.

Friday 22nd

I came in today despite still being ill to speak to my course leader about the mitigation.  He confirmed that it had gone through and the new deadline for my dissertation is Monday the 1st of February. I also had to go in for the ECP&E tutorial on making a portfolio. This was particularly necessary because I have to put together my RCA portfolio ASAP since the RCA portfolio hand-in deadline is next Wednesday (27th January)! For the tutorial I spoke to one of my tutors who had studied at the RCA on the same course I was applying for. I brought in all my work and we went through it, he gave me guidance on what types of projects to include which the RCA would be interested in. The general rule which emerged was to keep the conceptual briefs and get rid of the commercial ones. Due to the nature of the RCA course, it was even appropriate for me to include some of my more fine art work. Generally I assumed that anything too illustrative, and dare say fine arty, would not be appropriate for ANY of the MA’s I am planning to apply for. But I can see why this is the case, just from the type of work I saw on the Open Day.

This was actually the first time I had shown my full portfolio of work to any of my tutors because I had moved to BA Graphic Design as a top up year after completing my Fda in Visual Communication. Therefore none of the BA tutors had seem all my work yet. So I found my tutors surprised reaction quite amusing because he said that looking at my portfolio, he would never have guessed that all that work was done by one person (the graphic design work, illustration as well as fine art pieces) because it’s such an unlikely combination. A bit of a schizophrenic portfolio if you like, though I myself don’t see it that way because the way I work and type of work I do comes naturally to me.

Through the tutorial we came up with the order the projects should appear in as well as how they should be displayed. Because of the limited time I have for the portfolio I need to keep it quite simple and elegant (lay out with lots of white space). My tutor did emphasize that I only had two options – kill myself trying to get the portfolio done in just a few days time, considering my illness will be a bit of a hindrance – or simply pull out of the RCA application process. I had already resolved to complete the application and portfolio process despite all odds so I wasn’t backing out of it now. I knew the portfolio I produced may not end up being as perfect as it could be but I thought that something was better then nothing. I wanted to try, give it my best effort, anyway.

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