I attended the HEA-ADM supported workshop Writing in Creative Practice: Thinking through Writing and Making organised by Dr Alke Groppel-Wegener at Staffordshire University 29 March 2012. It was a very inspiring and thought-provoking day and very relevant for my lecturing as a graphic designer supporting students in their critical analysis of the place of historical and contemporary design within culture and society.
These artefacts were developed during the workshop, the book represents the process we engaged in through Pat Francis’ reflective exercises with supplied texts, images and objects. The second artefact was an attempt by me to express through collage my gratitude to Alke, Pat and Sarah Williamson.
This workshop has inspired me to continue more deeply finding a way to support my students to own their research, to better link to their practice, and to learn tactile tools to get them through the inevitable rough patches associated with writing, reflecting, researching and evidencing to develop coherent arguments. Pat’s techniques were key to giving me confidence in developing my own workshops with students, I now have concrete proposals I can make to my colleagues as we plan for next year’s curriculum.
I am also pursuing this subject for my PhD, only just begun (!), and looking at the role of making in cognitive and aesthetic development in art & design students. Sarah Williamson’s excellent presentation on this very point left me with a number of sources (I’ve already found a few!) and a sense that “I am not alone” and that “I stand on others’ shoulders” in my inquiry.
On reflection, it is the last point that I came away from the day feeling most grateful about: here was a room full of like-minded individuals, with so many skills and experiences that I can now collaborate with as I get stuck into my research. As I left the workshop I was already looking forward to the next one!
University of Chester, Lecturer in Graphic Design Theory & Practice