New Course Discourse // BA (Hons) Information and Interface Design

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Digital installation.

In our latest New Course Discourse feature, we chat to Programme Director Ben Stopher to find out more about the new BA (Hons) Information and Interface Design course.

So Ben, can you explain a little bit about the course and its aims?

Well this new course is highly digital and its design lead, so really the core of the course is about putting information design and interface design in this more digital context. There are three key specialisms that make up the course, UX and UI, data visualisation and graphic and information design.

If you’ve ever want to make websites, or build apps and data-visualisations, or even just something screen based and visual then this is the course for you.

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Gephi network graph, Ben Stopher, 2015.

What can students expect from the course in terms of structure?

So in the first year you do graphic design, typography and information visualisation. You also do graphic design animation coding for the web, which is a really valuable skill to develop.

In year two you start to work in the user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design studio, then you do interactive data visualisation and a major industry project. In both of these units we visit studios and also get live briefs from industry.

Why is this course unique?

It’s highly industry aligned and highly digital. We’ve offered this very specific area because there is definitely a gap. No one else explicitly teaches UX and UI design and no one else explicitly teaches interactive based visualisation so those three things are really unique to this course.

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Gesture capture data visualisation, Ben Stopher, 2015.

In terms of careers and futures, where could this course lead its students?

You can be a UX designer, you can be a UI designer, basically anyone who wants to work with how things look on screen; phone apps, websites, any kind of digital interactive content. There’s tons and tons of work for people with those sorts of skills.

One of the main selling points of this course is that it is highly industry aligned, and designers that have those kind of digital skills – that can work with data – are going to be highly sought after.

The industry really struggles to find designers with that digital skill set – and so that’s partly why we developed this course.

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Introduction to Infographics Workshop, 2015.

So what skills or qualifications are you going to be looking for in students?

We take students from foundation but we would also consider students straight from A level, if they know that they want to do digital design then we will look at their portfolios. Students will have similar qualities to applicants for Graphic Media Design, but also an awareness of what UX and UI is.

If you are an A level student who knows what those things are then you are highly likely to be a person that would be relevant for us to look at. I don’t expect schools to have a clue about the nuance of this course, but it’s about if the applicant has enough presence of mind to know what these things are, and thinks they might want to do them, then I’ll look at anything.

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LCC student with digital work.

Any last words?

It’s a super future relevant digital course. Graduates are going to be highly sort after because it isn’t a massive course, there are only 25 places. Students will get a brand new studio and a whole new team of tutors.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Information and Interface Design.

From LCC to Hollywood, alumnus Henry Hobson talks to us about his work on the Oscars, his feature film and more

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Oscars graphics 2015, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Henry Hobson.

Since graduating from the BA (Hons) Graphic and Media Design course at LCC, Henry Hobson has gone on to make it big in showbusiness. From leading the graphic designs for the Oscars, to directing his own feature film ‘Maggie’ starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Henry has worked his way to the top.

In the week that the first trailer for his Tribeca Film Festival-nominated movie is released, we caught up with him to find out a little more about his journey from LCC to Hollywood.

Can you tell us a little bit about your time at LCC. What were the most important lessons you learnt here?

I studied at LCC, or LCP as I knew it, for my Foundation course and BA. From the outset the focus on design was what drew me in, even on Foundation my tutors helped me explore the possibilities of design, and this was just before computers were becoming truly effective design tools.

Handmade and crafted techniques that I learnt, testing out colour and thinking critically meant that when I got to the BA I already had a shorthand in place.

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Oscars graphics 2015, The Imitation Game, Henry Hobson.

During term time I would do internships – I worked in my first year with Why Not Associates. I found the first couple of weeks a bit dull, but doing small tasks and little pieces of work helped me understand how valuable the creative experience I was getting at LCC was.

I learnt to push as hard as possible with projects, answering the briefs how I wanted to answer them. I learnt there is no incorrect answer if you have navigated to it from the brief. I still stick to that open way of thinking now, when a brief comes in.

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The making of the Oscars graphics 2015, Interstellar, Henry Hobson.

Can you quickly talk us through your journey from graduation to where you are now in your career? Were there any key opportunities that you feel particularly grateful for? Formative experiences?

By the time I left LCC I had done so many internships that I was able to get a job at Why Not Associates almost straight away. I worked for them for years, before getting a place at the Royal College of Art. Whilst studying at a postgraduate level, I still found that my experiences at LCC, and the lessons I learnt there were fundamental in developing my ability to think creatively, even though they were hard to get my head around at the time.

What made you move to America, and is there a difference in the culture of design in the UK and the US?

The move to America came a little bit out of the blue, after my work was spotted. I found the design culture intensely different. Even my first week in the States when I was asked to pitch and I was presenting concepts and theories, the Americans wanted finished designs in the pitch not theories. The technical skill level is insane here.

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Oscars graphics 2015, Boyhood, Henry Hobson.

How did you get into films, and can you explain a little about what led you to your feature film, ‘Maggie’?

I chose LCC because of the late Ian Noble, who sat me down when I went to a D&AD event in Holborn. I wanted to study film and Ian convinced me that design was a secret backdoor into cinema, telling me that Hitchcock, Ridley Scott, Kirostami and others all started as designers, and that the British film industry is so closed off it would be so difficult.

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The making of the Oscars graphics 2015, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Henry Hobson.

So my long game always involved film, using moving image and design as a creative outlet to try and tell stories. Why Not Associates had their foot in all sorts of doors and shortly before arriving I was able to be mentored by David Ellis in directing, going to shoots and being behind the camera.

I learnt the technical terms and ways of working and this allowed me the confidence when I moved to the states to tell bigger stories. It was a few of those bigger stories that led me to Maggie.

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Oscars graphics 2015, Birdman, Henry Hobson.

With your feet so firmly in both the graphic design industry and the film industry, where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time, how will you maintain that balance, or do you want to move more definitely into one area?

I love being in both areas! Creatively design allows for a more spontaneous outlet and film is the slow fix, you have to have immense stamina to build and work on films, because they take so long to make!

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Oscars graphics 2015, Maleficent, Henry Hobson.

What advice would you give someone graduating from a graphics course this summer?

I left LCC and my website was filled with conceptual thinking and graphic projects, which was an exciting position to be in. However, I soon realised that to get where I wanted to be I needed to tailor my portfolio into a language that design studios could see as applicable; to show proficiency in the core software and subtlety within my designs. My advice would be to keep this exciting conceptual stuff on your websites, but think about sectioning them off to show the different ways you can work.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Graphic and Media Design.

Read Slate.com’s fascinating interview with Henry about his graphic designs for the Oscars.

Read Artofthetitle.com’s interview with behind the scenes pictures of the Oscars graphic design process.

First-year BA (Hons) Live Events and Television students share their film set experiences

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House Project day 2, set of Man’s World.

Students on LCC’s BA (Hons) Live Events and Television course recently enjoyed a cross-year collaboration in which first-year students worked as runners and in other roles on second-year students’ films.

The collaborative approach provided a chance to network and gain practical on-set experience, and also involved students from BA (Hons) Film and Television.

Two first-year BA (Hons) Live Events and Television students who benefitted from this opportunity spoke to us about how it worked and what they learned.

Chloe Mattei – runner, Once Upon a Time

Just before the film crew of ‘Once Upon a Time’ were about to start filming, I was asked to be their runner for the day.

As I had never been a runner before this was daunting to start off with, but I was excited about the opportunity to learn more about the production. My role involved collecting materials or assisting anyone in the crew who needed extra help.

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House Project day 1, set of Once Upon a Time.

At the beginning of the day I was introduced to the director and producer who made sure I knew where the basic equipment was around the room. Straight away there was a problem with the sound recorder running out of stand-by batteries, so it was my responsibility to purchase more batteries on budget, confirming with the production co-ordinator.

As well as running around for various tasks, it was also important for me to help relieve the stress between the crew by always having a smile on my face and being flexible with my time.

Another aspect of the role was being able to think quickly on my feet. For example, during one of the scenes there was liquid being poured into a glass which needed to be then poured back into the bottle for the shot to be captured again. However, as we did not have a funnel on set I had to make one; I did this by simply getting a plastic cup and punching a whole in the base which worked perfectly.

During the work experience, I enjoyed getting to know the whole team and seeing them succeed with their responsibilities within the production. Also, it was a pleasure to get to know the extras as many times I guided them onto set, making sure to point out any hazards.

Through being part of the team I observed just how important communication is to a production, as when the crew communicated well everyone was on the right page of the script and people could multi-task faster, without problems developing from misunderstandings.

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First- and second-year students working together.

Elliott Paterson – runner and art department assistant, various films

During the second term of my first year we had the opportunity to collaborate with the second-years on the House Project.

For the majority of our year this was an opportunity to learn from the second-years’ experience and network with them. For myself, this meant throwing myself into the project, working on three films in the art department in various ways.

Across all the films I was involved with sourcing props and retrieving them, set dressing and building specialist makes. I also had the opportunity to be involved in the shooting of the films as a runner.

Through all of these opportunities I have not only learned about different roles within the studio but have been given the opportunity to discuss the course and build relationships with all involved.

This for me has been the highlight, and while travelling to props houses was exciting, and building sci-fi machines was creatively freeing, it is the relationships with those I have worked with that will last and guide me in what I want to do next year, whether that be producing or being part of the crew.

Read more about BA (Hons) Live Events and Television

New Course Discourse // MA Graphic and Media Design

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Course Leader for MA Graphic and Media Design, Paul Bailey

In the latest New Course Discourse, we chat to Paul Bailey, Course Leader for the redeveloped and revalidated MA Graphic and Media Design.

Tell us a bit about the transition from the former MA Graphic Design to the new MA Graphic and Media Design.

First of all, I think it’s very important to acknowledge the success that the MA Graphic Design course has had in establishing an amazing history in dealing with the subject and influencing the practice of graphic design. We wish to continue these discussions with our students, colleagues, graduates, external partners and the emerging research community within the Graduate School at LCC.
Read the rest of this entry »

Waste-Off and LCC’s Museum of Reinvention

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The Museum of Reinvention, Waste-Off, LCC, 2015.

This week marks the conclusion of the cross-University Waste-Off Challenge, a  project to give waste new value and help promote material reuse and sharing. As part of this the Museum of Reinvention is being exhibited at LCC.

Waste-Off was launched at the end of last year by the UAL research hub Conscientious Communicators with support from Stephen Reid, Deputy Vice Chancellor of UAL, who saw the project as an opportunity to “harness the passion to drive forward change”.

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The Museum of Reinvention, Waste-Off, LCC, 2015.

Teams comprised of students, academic and technical staff came together to collect material waste and via studio working and workshops facilitated by design-maker and UAL alumnus Jan Hendzel, created collaborative inventions.

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The Museum of Reinvention, Waste-Off, LCC, 2015.

The result was the generation of diverse and inventive projects from across London College of Communication, Central St Martins, Camberwell and London College of Fashion.

LCC students, staff and alumni created  two cabinets of reclaimed, up-cycled and reinvented objects – to act as a permanent showcase of inspirational examples, teaching tools and unexpected ‘creative curiosities.’ The aim was to demonstrate that salvaged items can have greater value, character and potential than virgin materials.

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The Museum of Reinvention, Waste-Off, LCC, 2015.

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The Museum of Reinvention, Waste-Off, LCC, 2015.

Sarah Temple and Tara Hanrahan, who conceived and managed the project, explain: “We wanted people to explore the creative potential of the discarded! To show by example what is possible and through this activity help establish practical processes for staff and students to share resources and avoid contributing to landfill.”

Find out more about Conscientious Communicators here.

 

BA (Hons) Advertising student premieres romantic drama Handle with Care at Cineworld

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Handle with Care (2015) in production.

Third-year LCC student Tope Phillips has just completed his second feature Handle with Care, a British romantic drama exploring the highs and lows of love and friendship within a circle of five twenty-somethings living in London’s evolving suburbia.

The film touches on issues faced in contemporary relationships including interracial dating, serial daters, the challenges of commitment and many others, premiering recently at Cineworld Canary Wharf.

Watch the trailer //

We caught up with Tope to find out more about his work.

How did you first get into filmmaking?

I have always had an interest in films and writing, however I first got into filmmaking in my first year of university. I discovered I had a flair for filmmaking after I worked on a couple of projects.

One of my old friends Josh Bridge then contacted me, after seeing some of my work, about teaming up and creating films together at the end of 2012. We got together with the same vision and we have created two films together [the first was Squeeze, which premiered at Cineworld Chelsea].

What do you most enjoy about the process as a whole?

I enjoy every part of filmmaking, from the writing and developing of the storyline and scripts, to the audition, meeting and getting to know the actors during the rehearsals, and selecting locations for filming.

I also really enjoy the production and all the technical aspects of filming such as lighting, selecting the lenses and using different equipment on set such as the rigs and mini-cranes, and the post-production aspects such as editing, selecting the film soundtrack, designing the posters and then promoting the film.

Seeing the whole plan come together was very rewarding, however I would say my favourite part of the process was the production. This was the most rigorous, however also the most rewarding.

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What has so far been the biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge was during the production of the film, we had really long days with some days starting shooting at 9am till 3-4am and resuming filming the next day at 9am.

We also had really big scenes like a scene at a comedy club where we had over 50 extras, so we had to be really organised in order for things to run smoothly.

Handle with Care is about dating in London – obviously there are a lot of films exploring this area, so what did you particularly want to address in your own film?

We made sure this film wasn’t like the typical romantic comedy/drama with the typical fairytale ending.

We made sure the characters were real and relatable and touched on many issues in young people’s relationships today such as interracial dating when parents and other parties may not approve, relationships where one party is eager to get married whilst the other isn’t, serial dating and the impacts it has, and lots more.

We also focused it on a group of friends so we could tell multiple stories at the same time.

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Behind-the-scenes moments during shooting.

You’re currently studying BA (Hons) Advertising – how do you think this has helped your filmmaking?

Studying advertising gave me a can-do attitude, it definitely helped me in seeing things from different point of views.

Advertising involves a lot of planning and developing ideas which is essential in filmmaking. My lecturers helped to keep me motivated and encouraged me to pursue filmmaking.

What’s next for you?

Hopefully I can carry on making films on a bigger, better scale in the future. I also really like advertising so I might work in the advertising industry for some time.

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Third-year BA (Hons) Advertising student and filmmaker Tope Phillips

Visit the Handle with Care website

Read more about BA (Hons) Advertising

Artefact // Behind the Scenes

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The Artefact team at work in the newsroom. Image © SUARTS

Third-year BA (Hons) Journalism student Paula Wik reflects on her experience as Managing Editor on Artefact magazine.

Behind the scenes, blood, sweat and tears are shed as we try to pull it all together. We are in the newsroom Monday to Wednesday 10am-5pm and the process is similar to that of a ‘real’ publication.

That’s because we are a real publication. Over the two terms we have worked on Artefact, over 600 articles have been published, many over 1,000 words.

We have secured interviews with big shots such as news anchor Jon Snow, Green Party leader Natalie Bennett and celebrated photographer and UAL alumnus Rankin, as well as many less famous individuals who we find inspiring and/or interesting.

We’ve done original research and created some pretty darn exciting pieces – our piece on whaling in the Faroe Islands has drawn over 3,600 unique viewers alone!

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Artefact recently investigated whaling in the Faroe Islands.

Each article is painstakingly processed through the workflow from its beginnings as a ‘pitch’ (a suggestion of a story to be written – either from writers or editors), to ‘in progress’ (when writers write the story), to ‘draft submitted’ (when editors edit the piece), to ‘pending subbing’ (when sub-editors correct flow, spelling and grammar), to ‘editor’s check’ (when senior editors give the piece a once over).

Finally, the article reaches the tutors who approve the piece before publishing.

Along the way it can be sent back and forth between the writer and the editors many times for polishing and improvements – maybe another quote is needed for balance, maybe there’s a legal issue, maybe the whole piece doesn’t make sense.

Our turnaround for our print publication is very time-limited. We’re only in the newsroom three days a week and one printed edition has to be created in four weeks – from pitch to being sent off to the printer.

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The magazine explored the idea of freedom in the Liberty issue.

Everything has to be considered – content (of course), layout, design. Will this appeal to our readers? Will our front cover make our readers want to pick it up? The balance of the articles: harder stories mixed with softer; images versus illustrations.

Does the content mirror our issue theme – this year we’ve looked at Metamorphosis, Greed, Liberty and Therapy. Does the content relate to the theme in too much of an obvious, literal or ‘samey’ way?

We work with a designer who guides us with the layout of the printed editions. We often clash, but always try to reach a compromise.

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The Natural Capital issue was released to coincide with LCC Green Week 2015.

As the managing editor for the last two issues I have been massively privileged. Being in the middle of it all means that I have been able, and required, to learn at least a little of what all the different roles demand.

There have been many flaws in our system; some roles are only needed for a few hours per day, while my job has turned into a full-time, seven days a week position.

A big difference between Artefact and a publication out in the real world is that we are students and have not been employed – instead, we’re paying to produce the content.

We all bring varying levels of dedication, talent and experience, which has been the biggest challenge of the module. For those students who have taken ownership of Artefact, it’s enriched our experience of BA (Hons) Journalism.

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Spread from the Liberty issue of Artefact.

I know there will be changes made for the future Artefact team, by which time we will hopefully be employed after having wowed the industry folks out there with our incredibly impressive publication.

Our baby, created from nothing, has grown up to be the talk of the town. Maybe not quite, but we’ve had amazing feedback.

I am grateful for this module and being able to leave three years of university with four brilliant editions of Artefact in my hand – knowing that the hard work we have poured into it has, to at least an extent, made up for the masses of money we have poured into our education. And did I learn…

Visit the Artefact website

Read more about BA (Hons) Journalism

Review // PR Guest Lecture: Anaïs Hayes, Google UK

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Second-year BA (Hons) Public Relations student Mary Davoudi reports on LCC’s recent PR Guest Lecture by Google UK’s Head of Brand Development, Anaïs Hayes.

Anaïs’s engaging speech shared her extensive insights from Google on how technology is changing marketing communications and reorganising brands and businesses.

She reminded us that the rise of technology today is the slowest it has ever been, and it is only going to speed up, as the 2.8 billion people who are online now are expected to at least triple in the next five or six years.

She compared it to Moore’s Law and stated that every single year the number of connections we can fit into a device will double. Not only will it get faster but also smaller and a lot cheaper.

She shared the amazing fact that mobile data in 2014 was 12 times the size of the entire internet in 2000. She reminded us that access to connections is also getting much more global and there are 10 billion devices worldwide; more people have access to a mobile device than a toothbrush!

Anaïs introduced the concept of instant gratification: how as consumers we will wait only two seconds for a webpage to load. Linked to this, it is not only the device or the message that matters, but the speed of the message. If, in those two seconds, the page is not loading, we immediately go to a competitor’s website.

As a result consumer behaviour can be understood by a completely different www acronym. It is not world wide web anymore, it is ‘what I want, where I want, when I want it’ – and if I can’t have that I will go somewhere else.

Baking speed into every concept you present to a client is crucial, Anaïs reminded us. According to her, businesses that support this are the businesses that succeed. Success is now based around ease, fluency and service.

Anaïs also discussed YouTube being not just a digital platform but the largest focus group in the world, where people will comment, like and view things and let your brand know what they like in real-time. As a public relations practitioner or a brand marketer, you can react to these changes immediately.

She highlighted an example of car brand Honda, who launched two different versions of their advert to see which one attracted more people. The one that got fewer views was taken down and all ad spend focused on the most successful one.

During her speech, Anaïs showed us a short video of a child playing with an iPad. In the next shot the child is seen playing with a magazine which she thinks is a touch screen iPad. Instead of turning the pages, she tries to touch them with her fingers.

The video demonstrated that we shouldn’t just be thinking about the current generation but focusing our expectations on future generations who have entirely different ways of thinking and behaving. As public relations practitioners we have to be ahead of the curve to advise our clients on these changes.

Anaïs also introduced another important concept for the future of communications and marketing: permission-based media.

It used to be that if brands showed you something frequently enough, eventually as a consumer you would buy it. Now, when an ad annoys you, you can avoid it.

As a result communications need to become permission-based. People don’t buy from brands. People buy from people. Brands need to work hard to understand how to do this to ‘hear’ consumer’s permission.

Anaïs finished her lecture by reminding us that in the 1920s, messages were presented on cinema screens metres away from us; in the 1960s to 1980s the message was in our living room via television. Then on our laptops and tablets.

Then we start becoming more personally involved and today we have wearable technology such as Google Glass. Is this the future of communications and marketing?

Studies show that the closer information is to cerebral cortex the more effectively it is processed, while it is predicted that in 2020 there will be 250 million wearable devices. What will this do to the discipline?

Words by Mary Davoudi

Read more about BA (Hons) Public Relations

Two LCC alumni premiere their latest film ‘Firewalker’ based on the music of funk band Jungle Fire

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Firewalker, Alejo Restrepo and Roger Gonzalez, 2014.

The 70s are back in this visual tribute to Afro-Latin Funk band Jungle Fire, created by break-through filmmakers and LCC BA (Hons) Design for Interaction and Moving Image alumni Alejo Restrepo and Roger Gonzalez. The pair, who funded the film with a successful Kickstarter campaign, released their film this week.

Their journey began two years ago whilst Alejo and Roger were studying together at LCC. On a friend’s recommendation they went out to watch a show by Jungle Fire. The band, a much talked about Afro Latin Funk band hailing from Los Angeles, were in the middle of a tour made possible by support given by Tony Morrison, DJ Lubi, Craig Charles of BBC6, DJ Snowboy and the UK Arts Council.

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Still from Firewalker, Alejo Restrepo and Roger Gonzalez, 2014.

Jungle Fire had been packing venues and generating a very healthy buzz around their performances. Alejo explains, “The show was bananas, and we felt so inspired by the energy we felt at that packed venue, that we approached the band about creating something together.”

After going back and forth for about six months, Alejo and Roger came up with a concept for a short film based on the band’s track ‘Firewalker’. The film, with a storyline loosely based around how Jungle Fire formed, is a creative project produced in conjunction with Walter Pictures and features some of the LA area’s most promising young actors and dancers.

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Still from Firewalker, Alejo Restrepo and Roger Gonzalez, 2014.

Alejo explains, “The goal was to create a piece that could be shown in film festivals but also stands on its own as a music video, like Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’. This project was a complete labour of love. Roger and I even quit our jobs in London to come to LA and make this happen!”

Using music from the band’s new record ‘Tropicoso’ as inspiration, the film takes viewers back to the decade of funk and flares, offering a new creative alternative to the music video format we have come so accustomed to.

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Still from Firewalker, Alejo Restrepo and Roger Gonzalez, 2014.

The 9 minute short, which was shot on location in LA, provides a visual representation of the whole album. With its laid back, funky style, the film aims to highlight the sense of euphoria that this Afro-Latin Funk music induces.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Interaction Design Arts (previously BA (Hons) Design for Interaction and Moving Image)

New Course Discourse // MA International Journalism (Online)

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LCC’s Russell Merryman in the newsroom.

In our latest New Course Discourse feature, we chat to Course Leader Russell Merryman to find out more about the new course MA International Journalism (Online).

Can you tell us a bit about why this course has been created?

I suppose the aim, really, is to make practitioners – journalism or media studies graduates – more aware of the growing internationalisation of the media.

Before the internet, all media was regionalised or territorialised, either by nation or locale, and that was a limitation of the technology that was being used, whether it was newspapers or satellite TV.

The internet’s changed all that, and in effect everybody who publishes now is an international journalist.

But what we want to do is to try and make people more aware of the issues that are raised by that – that the playing field has radically changed – and raise an awareness about the different kinds of approaches to storytelling, narrative, law, ethics and freedom of expression.

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Journalism students working in the newsroom.

How does the course content compare to an undergraduate journalism course?

On a good undergraduate programme students will be taught how to edit video, edit audio, deal with laying out a page, use social media, create websites.

What we want to do is take that on and engage people with some of the very exciting new storytelling platforms that are available, that allow people to create in-depth documentary-style journalism.

Long-form narrative, ways in which we can get under the skin of a story much more effectively than we ever could before, and engage the audience in a new type of interactive dialogue.

We want to let people explore and experiment within their own art, as it were, and within their own discipline, and really try and bring their journalism to life. Not just by examining what’s going on around them with an international perspective, but also collaborating with students in other parts of the world.

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Artefact magazine, produced by LCC’s BA (Hons) Journalism students.

We’ll also be bringing in people from industry. Many of the tutors who we’re looking to recruit onto the course have experience with international broadcasters and news organisations, and we’ll be bringing in guest speakers as well.

We’ll be looking for the students themselves to bring their own experience from their own part of the world to the table, and make that part of the debate.

All of this works towards a final major project, whether that be a research dissertation or a multimedia documentary. That’s where we want them to get to at the end of the two-year course.

Can you talk a bit more about the ‘online’ aspect of the MA?

The programme is delivered entirely online so there will be no requirement to travel to London, no requirement for visas and no requirement for expensive rents. It’s part-time, so students can study it whilst, I hope, holding down a full-time job.

So it is designed with practitioners in mind – people who want to build their international perspectives on the work they are doing as journalists, and hone those skills with a group of like-minded people in an online community of interest.

For the College, it’s not the first time we’ve done online courses. We’ve got experience of doing those already, with a very successful photojournalism and documentary photography course, and we want to build on that.

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Emily Bell, former Editor-in-Chief of Guardian Online, giving the annual Hugh Cudlipp Lecture to LCC students.

We’re going to be looking at a number of aspects of journalism that are affected by developments on the internet and the international perspectives that it brings.

So things like data journalism, developmental journalism, how journalism operates in emerging democracies, is the Western model really the right model? Are there are models that work more effectively in those environments? And what are the limitations and challenges of those areas?

You mentioned LCC’s reputation in providing online courses, but what else can the College offer to your future students?

What LCC brings to the table in this case is the experience of the staff, and the focus on communities of practice and communities of interest, which we want to take into a virtual realm.

Also there is still access to a lot of the facilities, like Library Services and other systems that we provide to the LCC community, which are available online. There are lots of benefits of being a student, even though you’re not physically in the building.

And connections with other courses – students will make those connections online. Students are talking to each other via the internet even when they’re physically in the building, so we’re building communities across those boundaries. LCC has always been keen to do that – it’s in our DNA.

So students will be joining that very extensive group of experts, fellow students and fellow practitioners. We are actually hoping to collaborate directly with the photojournalists, and get people working together on projects.

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LCC journalism students working in the newsroom.

What are you looking for in applicants?

We’ll be looking for people who have some background in journalism – probably journalism graduates. We’re looking for experienced storytellers.

I talk to my students on the undergraduate programme and they say, “What can I do next?” And one of the things that struck me was that a lot of them went on to do things like international politics, which developed their worldview but wouldn’t necessarily develop their journalism.

So I thought there was a gap in the market – we can actually provide people with a Masters course which examines international politics and the issues of freedom of expression from an international perspective, but do so with a journalistic worldview.

We will also be happy to consider non-journalists – people who’ve done media and communications degrees, who’ve got some of those practical skills that we can hone into journalism.

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Artefact magazine, produced by LCC’s BA (Hons) Journalism students.

What kinds of careers can graduates from the course expect to go on to? 

We hope that we will turn out people who are confident about tackling some of those international issues, and will be able to do so either as freelance writers, or in international news organisations – the number of which is actually growing.

We are seeing more and more international broadcasters, internet services and magazines coming online. From the days when there was just CNN and the BBC, now there are a huge number of potential employers who are interested in candidates who have a strong worldview and a strong desire to tell stories that have a global reach.

I hope that we will find stories that nobody else is telling, based on the students’ local knowledge and experience. I think that is a really exciting prospect.

Find our more about MA International Journalism (Online)

Jo Glover, Senior Graphic Designer at the V&A and LCC alumna, talks us through her designs for Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty

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Savage Beauty Poster, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

The V&A’s record-breaking current exhibition, Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, is the first and largest retrospective of the late designer’s work to be presented in Europe.

LCC alumna Jo Glover, who graduated from BA (Hons) Graphic and Media Design in 2006, is Senior Graphic Designer at the V&A, and has been in charge of developing the design identity of the exhibition. Jo has been involved in every detail of the show from the selection of the lead image and designing the promotional campaign, to perfecting the details of the guides, leaflets and invitations.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

The exhibition will showcase McQueen’s visionary body of work. Spanning his 1992 MA graduate collection to his unfinished A/W 2010 collection, McQueen’s designs will be presented with the dramatic staging and sense of spectacle synonymous with his runway shows.

We caught up with Jo to find out more about her journey from LCC to the V&A.

So Jo, can you tell us a little bit about your role as senior graphic designer at the V&A? How did you get to this job, and what do you enjoy about it?

I got the job in 2011 after working at ad agency Wieden+Kennedy and doing my MA at the RCA. I also worked in branding for three years at Venturethree which helped with the more commercial work I do for marketing.

The job at the V&A combines the parts I loved from the advertising and branding jobs with my first job in the arts and cultural sector designing books for the likes of the RA. I love the variety of working on beautiful luxury print through to exhibition design and way finding. It never gets boring and is always a challenge.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

Can you explain your involvement in the Savage Beauty exhibition? What excited you about it and what you were nervous about?

I worked closely with marketing and press and the curatorial team to make sure we told the story of the exhibition through the print and digital campaign. I had to really fight for the very macabre savage image because it could be seen as intimidating but I think the lead image encapsulates the whole idea of both savage and beauty.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

So what was important to you in your approach to the designs for Savage Beauty?

In my approach to the savage beauty designs it was important to capture the slick high end luxury feel whilst retaining the darkness that comes through Lee McQueen’s work. We also really wanted to highlight the less known collections as well as the obvious ones. The events like the dinner are very high profile with a number of celebrity guests so we used lots of beautiful embossing, matte and gloss contrasts, and great paper.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

How would you describe your style and design sensibilities?

I’d say my style and design sensibilities are very pure, clean and quite classic but this obviously depends on the brief and market I’m working to. You have to be able to adapt and embrace styles that work with the audience or visitors you are targeting.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

How did LCC prepare you for life in the working world?

LCC prepared me so well for the working world because I did the industrial placement year where I got valuable experience from Elle magazine in London, the Chase in Manchester and Storm design in Melbourne, Block Branding in Perth and Principals branding and 2Birds design in Sydney. I also worked at Why Not Associates in London when I got back. This allows you to work out what you like and don’t like and also to travel and experience many different ways of working.

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

Can you give one piece of advice for an aspiring graphic design student?

My one piece of advice would be to work hard, don’t be scared to make mistakes, and make lots of tea to get involved if you’re on a placement!

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Savage Beauty, Jo Glover, V&A, 2015.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Graphic and Media Design

Read Jo’s alumni profile

Find out more about Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty and book tickets

LCC staff and students take shows to Derby’s FORMAT International Photography Festival

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AK-47 from ‘Vietnam Deprimed’, Lewis Bush, 2014.

Two photography shows curated by LCC staff will be exhibited at this year’s FORMAT International Photography Festival in Derby.

‘Media and Myth’ is curated by LCC alumni Lewis Bush (also a visiting practitioner) and Monica Alcazar-Duarte, with Paul Lowe, Course Leader for MA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography.

First staged in 2014 and part-funded by the LCC Graduate School, the exhibition brings together material produced during the College’s NAM project, which explored the role of the media in the Vietnam War.

Participating students took a diverse range of approaches to the topic. They examined the ways in which photography was used to record the conflict, looked at underground zines produced by US servicemen stationed in south-east Asia, and used a variety of media to present their ideas and research.

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Visitors at ‘Media and Myth’ in 2014. Image © Lewis Bush

Lewis tells us: “Though I think Monica and I already had some idea of the diversity of the work produced for the NAM project, we were still quite surprised at what we found when we started really looking.

“There were research projects exploring everything from graphic design and underground magazine production, to the legacy of post-traumatic stress and collections of soldiers’ own photography.

“We were both impressed by the level of commitment some of the students had shown to a research topic that was in some ways quite far removed from the focus of their course.”

‘Media and Myth’ also includes photographs drawn from the Stanley Kubrick Archive, housed at LCC, which proved to be a key resource for many of the participants in the NAM project.

On display are images produced during the making of the director’s 1985 Vietnam War film Full Metal Jacket, which reveal how Kubrick sought to dress and disguise the disused Becton Gasworks site in east London as the set of the battle-scarred Vietnamese city of Hue.

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A spread from ‘Voices of Dissent’, Amin Musa, 2014.

The curators say: “The Vietnam War might have passed into history, but its lessons and legacy remain plain to see in the conduct of modern wars and the way the media report them, and in the ways that these conflicts merge with popular culture and entertainment.”

Artists showing in ‘Media and Myth’ are: Jacob Balzani, Madeleine Corcoran, Cinzia D’Ambrosi, Julia Johnson, Veronika Lukasova, Steve Mepsted, Amin Musa, Linka A. Odom, Lewis Bush and Monica Alcazar-Duarte.

Also at the festival is ‘The Forensic Turn’, a group show curated by LCC’s Paul Lowe and featuring work by Simon Norfolk, Zijah Gafic, Edmund Clark, Ashley Gilbertson, and Fred Ramos.

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Image © Zijah Gafic

The exhibition considers the problems surrounding images of atrocity – often accused of aesthetising or exploiting suffering – and looks at work which depicts not the act of violence or the victim but the spaces and objects involved in such acts.

The artists included in the show focus on the traces of war and conflict rather than its direct effects on the human body, but still open up a space in which the viewer can engage with the situation.

Paul explains: “By exploiting the presence of absence in objects, they offer an alternative and powerful route to the documentation of violence.”

Both shows are open at 1 Corn Exchange, Derby, from Friday 13 March to Sunday 12 April 2015, with a Private View on Thursday 12 March, 7-9pm.

Read more about MA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography

Visit the FORMAT Festival website

Read more about the LCC Graduate School