BAFTA Ones To Watch Award nomination for four LCC students

Dare to Be Digital

LCC students after receiving BAFTA nomination, Dare to Be Digital, 2015.

Three LCC BA (Hons) Games Design students and a BA (Hons) Sound Arts and Design student were recently nominated for a BAFTA Ones To Watch Award.

We met with Edward Burton, now in his final year of BA (Hons) Games Design, to find out a little more about his very busy summer.

Edward explains: “ProtoPlay is a huge international gaming festival based in Dundee, a subsection of which is called Dare To Be Digital. I actually found out about it on Twitter, having only ever really taken part in small London-based gaming events before, like Video Brains.

“A group of us talked about applying to be part of the festival. We had already been working on a game as part of our end-of-year assessment, but at that stage all we really had was an idea on a page. I think we all thought ‘what’s the worst that can happen?’ and so applied with a pitch video that a friend helped us make.

“As with a lot of these things we still hadn’t heard back two months later and so thought nothing more of it, presuming we hadn’t been successful. However, right in the middle of the LCC Summer Shows we received an email from Dare To Be Digital saying that not only did they love the game, but they loved it so much that we had bypassed the interview stage and had been chosen to exhibit – which is practically unheard of!

“Considering that other exhibitors were professional gaming studios, and we were just four students, this was an enormous compliment. It was also really daunting. We had limited technical resources over the summer, and whilst the game had come a long way in the two months since our initial application, there was still a lot of work to do!

“We had been given a fairly open brief, with only two criteria set: to make a game that goes from A to B and that is set in the 1900s.

Dare to Be Digital

Dare to Be Digital, 2015.

“Our initial ideas morphed and evolved quickly. Firstly we wanted to create a point-and-click, noir-style, detective game. This quickly developed a scenario and became about a mother who was searching for her lost child. Eventually, however, we moved away from this narrative and started to think more generally about the message of the game.

“The game ‘The Wall Shall Stand’ is loosely based on the idea of starting a revolution in an abstracted 1960s city.

“To begin with we wanted the game to be set in Berlin, but we decided to take away any features that pin the landscape to a specific place or time. We really wanted to avoid offending anyone by referencing an exact period or location, and this way the game has a more universal feel.

“Aesthetically we were inspired by poster graphics, so sharp lines and bright colours were always going to be part of our designing process.

“It was a challenge to get the game to a standard that we were happy with before we had to move everything to Scotland, but we managed it. Having spent so much time focused solidly on the development of the game we travelled to the festival with very little idea of what to actually expect.

“There were a few surprises, for example we didn’t realise that the Dare To Be Digital show was actually aimed at children, so we had real concerns that our game about revolution wouldn’t be a hit. However, because it was very minimalist, the game seemed to be engaging for children anyway.

Dare to Be Digital

Dare to Be Digital, 2015.

“Another nerve-wracking moment was when a judge for the competition visited our stand and asked ‘what’s your highest score?’ In our game there is no high score. The game is about an immersive experience. Theoretically you can spend all your time with the game just exploring. It’s not a violent game – all the protagonist can actually do is explore, or put up posters and pull down statues. I guess the only way you could count, or score, your experience is by how many monuments you pull down. The police in the game will knock you over and take away your posters – this is the antagonistic part of the game that you need – but that’s as violent as it gets.

“Obviously the more we got wrapped up in the festival the more nervous we became about how the game would be received by other judges. But in the end we always knew that were we to get through, it would be on creativity rather than marketability.

“Elements of our game are actually really sophisticated too. Edward Richards built that whole AI (artificial intelligence) behind the game, which is really impressive – the city is full of individual characters who are programmed carry out an enormous series of actions and you can just follow them.

Dare to Be Digital BAFTA ones to watch winners

Dare to Be Digital BAFTA Ones to Watch winners, 2015.

“One of the main reasons we entered the festival was because there were some really amazing opportunities and awards at stake. We knew that judges would pick three teams from Dare to be Digital to become the sole nominees of the BAFTA Ones To Watch Award. There was also a Design In Action Award and a Channel 4 Awards, both of which involved considerable funding.

“The BAFTA nomination, whilst a very distant dream, was the award that we were most excited about. We went to the award ceremony after a long day on our stand at the festival and, of course, the BAFTA awards were the last category to be announced, so the whole experience was very nerve-wracking. However, to our amazement, our game was awarded a BAFTA nomination!

“The whole experience was really overwhelming, and a great end to a challenging few months. Now we need to get on with our third-year studies whilst we wait for the BAFTA Games Awards!”

Find out more about BA (Hons) Games Design 

Find out more about BA (Hons) Sound Arts and Design

LCC graduate Maya Gadd produces children’s masterclass films for BBC Learning

Music Video

Making a music video inspired by Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries

Maya Gadd, a 2014 graduate from LCC’s BA (Hons) Design for Interaction and Moving Image, has recently helped to create a series of masterclass films as part of a classical music-based initiative from BBC Learning.

Ten Pieces is aimed at schools and encourages children to explore the world of classical music by producing their own creative responses to a selection of orchestral pieces. The project was nominated for a BAFTA Children’s Award in the Learning – Primary in 2015 category.

In her role as BBC researcher, Maya was part of a two-person team who shot eight masterclass films offering tips, ideas and inspiration for children responding to the Ten Pieces.

We caught up with Maya to find out more.

What does your researcher role at the BBC involve?

As a researcher, I work firstly to develop a project by brainstorming ideas and figuring out how the content will be of best use to the audience. I then research locations, talent, music, experts – making sure that I have lots of options that work within the project in different ways.

Together, the editorial team will make decisions about who and what we think would work best creatively and practically. We then shoot and edit what we have been working on, which is a whole other set of skills…

Music vid

Behind the scenes on the team’s Wagnerian music video

What were the biggest challenges in making the masterclass films?

The biggest challenge was the age range (12-year-olds). I needed to make sure that the ideas and artists in each masterclass were relevant to this age group. The whole point of the project was to get kids creatively responding to classical music – however they want to, not necessarily by playing music. Coding, dance and animation were all routes we went down.

Another challenge was the responsibility. The Ten Pieces project had already reached over half the primary schools nationwide and had been very successful in helping children achieve more than they would have by opening up their minds to new possibilities. I felt a lot of pressure to make sure that the masterclasses I was working on would give secondary school children that same experience.

Which of them is your favourite and why?

Making a music video was my favourite. It was a real team effort, and I loved that. It was also full of glitter. I also loved the mambo animation – I spent hours cutting out all the shapes for it and made a complete mess of the office. It was brill.

moving paper - animation

Maya helps to make an animation inspired by Bernstein’s Mambo

You made the coding film at LCC – how did it feel coming back?

I loved coming back to LCC, but it felt very different working there with a lot of responsibility. I am very used to LCC being my playground – this was not the time for me to play!


MistaJam and Sam Aaron compose a piece at LCC using code, inspired by Bizet’s Carmen

What would you most like people to take away from these films?

The aim was to show kids ways in which to be creative by listening to music even if they can’t read music or play an instrument; that music can still open up whole new ways of working and thinking. That’s what I hope to happen when they watch the masterclasses.

Read more about BA (Hons) Interaction Design Arts

View the Ten Pieces masterclass films 

Pentagram design new directional signage for LCC

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© Max Creasy

Earlier this year, international design consultancy Pentagram were commissioned to design a new system of College internal signage, with LCC alumnus Domenic Lippa leading on the project.

Over the summer period, the old black vinyl and A4 laminated door signs were removed and replaced with the new signage panels, intended to focus on better navigation within the building.

The system consists of door numbering, floor directories and larger scale directional signage, with the facility to produce in-house signage in the same style if the need arises.

We spoke to Associate Partner Jeremy Kunze about how Pentagram approached the project.

What were the priorities in providing new internal signage for the College?

The main priorities were to find a solution that could work within the LCC’s four different buildings and be adaptable enough to allow the College to change room names and redecorate when necessary. It also had to be incredibly cost-effective because of the College’s upcoming move.

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© Max Creasy

How did you approach the process with these priorities in mind?

From the beginning we needed to establish a first-hand understanding of the unique functions of each building and where information was most needed. We spent a lot of time walking between the different rooms in each building and looking at how the room types were used. It was also important to hear from staff and students who regularly used the building about what the issues were.

What were the biggest challenges along the way?

One of the biggest challenges was the adhoc way the current site had been developed. Each of the four blocks had a set of unique problems. In the Tower Block, for example, you have over 150 doors which are all slightly different – and then they are all different to the other doors in the other blocks. It was about finding a level of consistency which worked across everything.

And how do you feel about the end result now the signage is installed?

The resulting wayfinding solution is extremely adaptable. The material palette is inspired by LCC’s key principles – a dedication to ‘making’ and physical design. As with the UAL identity, the wayfinding should not get in the way of the students’ work, but it needed a sensitivity to the environment without over-dominating. It just needed to aide people to get around, which we think we have achieved.

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© Max Creasy

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© Max Creasy

Visit the Pentagram website

BA (Hons) Spatial Design students take part in Digital (Dis)connections at the Royal Academy


Calvin, Chin Chin and Aitor at the Royal Academy, 2015.

Second year students from BA (Hons) Spatial Design, Calvin Lok, Chin Chin Lam and Aitor Fernandez Hidalgo, took part in the Digital (Dis)connections event at the Royal Academy on Saturday 24 October.

This event, linked to the RA’s current Ai Wei Wei exhibition, was an evening of talks, performances and installations that aimed to challenge our contemporary use of the internet, and imagined future applications of digital technologies.

Calvin explains: “‘I(WE) AM(ARE) ANONYMOUS’, is an interactive video installation that seeks to reveal the duality and complexity of being anonymous. The installation invited users to anonymously create content which was visually broadcast in the exhibition space. The installation is made up of two parts, creation and propagation.

“The creation component is an ‘anonymous zone’ where users can create content under the guise of anonymity. Within the anonymous zone, the participant can see outside, but the onlookers will not be able to know who the participant is. This represents the power of anonymity.

“In the anonymous zone, the user was filmed, but their face was not shown. This emphasizes the idea of hiding in plain sight through anonymity and the freedom it affords.

“The propagation component broadcasts the activities from the anonymous zone on the wall opposite the creation component. However, instead of the face of the anonymous participant appearing, the faces of onlookers were reflected, representing the idea that an individual becomes the collective through anonymity – both trivializing and empowering their existence.

“Additionally, as the content will not be filtered, it will reflect the presence or absence of social responsibility and morality once ‘I (we) am (are) anonymous’.

“Process-wise, we started by establishing an idea based on the exhibition brief. After bouncing it back and forth between the three of us, we finally decided on one which we really liked and then proceeded to build on it. We came up with the initial idea of representing an anonymous state more tangibly, but it was important to us that it was still visually impressive.

“When it came to construction, we worked long hours every Monday and Wednesday over the whole of October. Despite having planned the project four months prior to the event, our space was only confirmed a month before, so this prevented us from moving forward. But with Aitor’s experience in the 3D workshop, construction moved quickly and the resultant booth was constructed in slightly over a week.


‘I(WE) AM(ARE) ANONYMOUS’’, Royal Academy, 2015.

“I then refined the software and made it fit our installation while Chin Chin worked on the visual communication of the booth. The last hurdle we had was storage and transport. As it was a large structure we had to store it in school and then transport it to the RA. Making the structure flat-pack was a really smart decision on our part as transport was so much more manageable this way.

“Lastly, we had to set up for the actual event at the RA. This was more of a challenge than an actual problem as the RA staff were very helpful. We set up the installation in about 3 hours and then proceeded to test it for another 1 hour. Once we were satisfied with the outcome, we packed up, took a break and waited for the event to start.”

Find out more about BA (Hons) Spatial Design.

MA Photography 2015 Prizegiving

LCC MA Photography PV 2015

LCC MA Photography 2015 prizegiving ceremony. © Ana Escobar

As part of LCC Postgraduate Show Two, MA Photography held their 2015 prizegiving ceremony prior to the Private View on Tuesday 17 November. The evening celebrated the hard work and achievements of the course’s graduating students, and the diversity of the work on show this year.

This is the 17th final show for MA Photography at LCC, and the course team was very happy to again host the Sproxton Award for Photography as well as prizes by Photoworks, MACK, Photofusion, Troika Editions, Metro Imaging and Silverprint, all honouring different aspects of photographic practice.

The Sproxton Award for Photography

LCC MA Photography PV 2015

Alex Grace receives her prize from David Sproxton. © Ana Escobar

This prize is judged each year by a panel consisting of an industry professional and MA Photography graduate; this year Shoair Mavlian of Tate Modern and 2013 alumna Sayako Sugawara. The winner receives £1000 to help kickstart their photography career. The prize was set up by David Sproxton from Aardman Animations in memory of his brother Andrew Sproxton, who together with Val Williams of PARC founded the Impressions Gallery in York in 1972.
Winner: Alex Grace
Runner up: Lalu Delbracio Musso

The Photofusion Prize


Photofusion winner and Sproxton runner-up Lalu Delbracio Musso performs an ‘action’ as part of her final project. © Ana Escobar

Photofusion, a Brixton-based independent photography resource centre and gallery, offers studio and darkroom hire, digital printing, film processing, training and professional support. The prize awarded by Photofusion is a £200 voucher which can be redeemed against any of these services, including mentoring and portfolio advice, scanning, film processing, courses and rental of facilities, and is judged by Kim Shaw and Paul Ellis (Photofusion) and Christiane Monarchi (Photomonitor).
Winner: Lalu Delbracio Musso

Troika Photography Award


Troika Photography winner Emilia Moisio with her final project. © Ana Escobar

Troika Editions supports the MA course with the Troika Photography Award, a 12-month mentoring programme. The judges are the gallery’s co-founders Bridget Coaker and Michael Walter. The winner is supported for 12 months through discussion, curatorial advice and critical reviews of their post-university projects, to the value of £1500.
Winner: Emilia Moisio

The Photoworks Prize


Photoworks winner Alexandra Uhart with her final project. © Ana Escobar

The winner of this prize, judged by Mariama Attah, is featured in a Showcase interview on the Photoworks website, and receives free Photoworks Membership for a year. Photoworks curates, commissions and publishes photographic work and new writing about photography and produces projects, exhibitions, books, the Brighton Photo Biennial and Photoworks Annual.
Winner: Alexandra Uhart
Runners up: Giulia Astesani and Emilia Moisio (to be featured on Showcase)

The MACK Award

LCC MA Photography PV 2015

MACK Award winner Giulia Astesani receives her prize from Michael Mack. © Ana Escobar

Publisher MACK offers the winner a prize of a £200 voucher for the purchase of MACK books, judged by director Michael Mack, and the opportunity to take part in a three-month internship at its London office.
Winner: Giulia Astesani
Commendations: Ines Da Rocha Alves, Daniel Barter, Martina Ferrera, Roberta Mongardi, Silvia Gentili, Megan Helyer (to receive two books each)

The Silverprint Prize


Silverprint winner Giulia Astesani and her work. © Ana Escobar

Silverprint offer a prize of £150 in vouchers to spend on photographic supplies to assist graduates in continuing their work. Silverprint is a photographic supplier stocking traditional, digital and alternative photographic materials, and the prize is judged by Alice Rosenbaum and Samuel Taylor.
Winner: Giulia Astesani

The Metro Imaging Mentorship


Metro Imaging winner Richard Nicholson with his final project. © Ana Escobar

Metro Imaging supply a 12-month intensive one-to-one mentorship experience, judged this year by Steve Macleod, Director of Metro Imaging, and 2009 alumna Marcia Michael. The mentorship is tailor-made to the winner’s needs, but might concentrate on practical and technical input; conceptual and contextual discussion around the graduate’s practice; networking and connections to industry; or industry reviews and meetings. Also included is £1000 credit with Metro to be spend on both the mentee’s practice and connecting him or her with a community of fellow mentees.
Winners: Richard Nicholson & Roshana Rubin-Mayhew


Metro Imaging winner Roshana Rubin-Mayhew with her final project. © Ana Escobar

Read more about LCC Postgraduate Show Two

Read more about MA Photography

View more Private View images on Flickr