Despite all my intentions of what to say when coming to this final part of the assignment I never quite know how to reflect in words that sum up succinctly how I feel it has gone, what has been a success or failure or what I have learnt and I usually follow the suggestions outlined in the course material firstly.
However, I have learnt throughout this section of the course to work in a methodical and logical manner that enables me to address the points I wish to make by vocalising the questions I am either wanting to ask or am wary of asking – this has been part of the self-directed learning which I feel I have thrived upon. The course materials have felt for the first time that they are heading towards being there as a frame for learning rather than as tutorials and this I feel has been beneficial as I do feel my confidence in my own abilities has increased although I still need to learn or improve my time management skills.
To address my weakest points first I am very much aware that my sketching of samples needs drastic work – I am struggling to portray textures and how I predict my samples to look or indeed the design aspect of sampling. I have, however, worked to vary my artistic media and at least get an impression of the textures down on paper but in truth I am far from happy with the results and will seek to address it over the coming weeks. I am also realising that I am someone who is process-led naturally, as I believe I said at this stage of assignment 1, due to having an inquisitive nature and inquiring mind and this is proving problematic for a design-led course – I am overcoming this to an extent by verbalising my intentions and making somewhat basic diagrammatic sketches with the aforementioned indication of textures or linear aspects.
I confess to finding the Project 4 far more than Project 3 – I struggled somewhat with using found materials and do not feel I have been as experimental as I would like or have used as wide variety as perhaps I could. I do feel that the samples produced for Project 3 were relatively successful as a whole, although there were some utter disasters too, and I have been heavily influenced by the practitioners I researched in Research point 2.1 – in particular Diana Harrison and Clare Bartleman with the latter instigating the recycling of samples from earlier modules and courses. Project 4 I have loved doing due to the fact I was able to find materials that excited me from the outset and a couple which were unexpected bonuses and which really helped me to develop the samples further than I had expected.
Exploring both found and recycled materials has really expanding my thought processes and left me wanting to investigate how I can use them further particularly in conjunction with looking to transform materials in new innovative ways.
Demonstration of technical and visual skills – I do feel I have improved throughout this part of the course and have used a variety of materials and techniques in innovative ways whilst demonstrating an increasing level of skill. I have endeavoured to be more observant and show visual awareness but am concerned that my language skills with regards to descriptive terminology needs to improve in order to both verbalize and communicate my concepts and designs with clarity. Design and compositional skills I feel have been lacking but I am also not unhappy with the work I have done – the resolved samples in particularly have felt compositionally correct but it is the design aspect I need to work on further with any subsequent reworking or in the next assignment.
Quality of outcome – content, application of knowledge and presentation of work in a coherent manner I feel have all been done successfully. I feel I have been able to apply my knowledge gained more successfully than earlier modules and I have been able to conceptualise my thoughts clearly and succinctly through my communication. I am still learning to be more discerning but am also not fearful of accepting if something is diabolical which has held me back previously – it is what I learn from the ‘horrors” that enables me to take that knowledge forward and either adapt or correct those errors.
Demonstration of creativity – experimentation, invention, development of personal voice – this is the area I feel I am coming into my own finally! I feel I have somehow managed to get over some of the barriers that my Asperger’s creates and have felt more confident in being considerably more inventive and prepared to take risks on a much higher level than before – understanding how my Asperger’s affects me is now enabling me to adapt my learning and my methodology in order to develop my personal voice which I now feel is beginning to really speak out.
Context – reflection, research, critical thinking – I am not entirely happy with the research aspect particularly in Exercise 2.3 where I felt I struggled somewhat which I found immensely frustrating as it has always been my strongest point. However I do feel my critical thinking and reflection is continuing to improve through developing a working methodology of which both are a natural part.