53 minutes w/ ruby bouwmeester

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Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Hi I’m Ruby, 23 and I live in Arnhem with my two cats and boyfriend.

How is the whole graduation experience doing it for you?

I graduated this January, so it’s a bit different for me. But I’m glad all the chaos is over now and I can go to this exhibition stress–free. But the last year was definitely the best of all, you have developed a sense of style that works for you as a graphic designer and you know better in which direction you want to work.

Could you tell us about your research project?

My research project is about The Language of Flowers, also sometimes called Floriography. It is a means of cryptological communication through the use or arrangement of flowers. At it’s highest point in 19th century Victorian England it was used to send a coded or secret message allowing the sender to express feeling that could not be spoken aloud. Every emotion or feeling could be translated back to a plant or flower. For example oak leaves means bravery, or a yellow rose means jealousy. To translate this subject into graphic design I looked at a technique where only natural elements are used, and where the plants themselves are part of the printing technique. That is why I decided to experiment with eco dyeing. Eco dyeing is a very old printing technique where the dyes or colorants are derived from plants or flowers. These plants leave an imprint of their outlines and / or colors on a surface.

In Floriography every emotion is related to a certain flower. So with that in mind I designed silk scarves and created my own ink that could literally carry out the heaviness of the sentiments in percentage (momentary/long–lasting).

What were some important influences for the creation of your project the way it’s constructed currently?

My interest in Dead Media, communication forms and print design.

Does your graduation, to you, feel as like it’s your Mona Lisa of work so far?

I think with the graduation project you really get the chance to show who you are as a graphic designer because you have been given a long time to work on one project with a subject that you came up with yourself.

Could you briefly inform us on the subject of your thesis?

It’s about social–political mapping.

Has your thesis had a certain influence on deciding on the research assignment?If yes, in what way?

No not really, but I’ve described a lot of 19th century maps in my thesis so I must really like things from the past.

To what sense would you like this project, and its methodology, to correspond to your practice after graduation?

I would like to work as a print designer, to combine graphic design with textile and fashion.

Where did you do your internship?

Mainstudio, Amsterdam

In what way has the experience of doing an internship changed you of your (design)beliefs or (work)habits?

I liked working in a nice environment. It was sort of a confirmation for yourself to see that you had chosen the right study.

Did they serve avocado during lunch?

Haha yes.

Could you inform us on your partner, client and type of assigment for the practical assignment?

Together with Lynn van Gijzel I’ve made a publication for 1001 publishers, called Meesterwerken en Meesterzetten by Frank Reijnders.

Five years from now, you’ll be doing what?

Work some place nice hopefully and maybe I’ll be living in Belgium.

Any tips for upcoming graduate students?

Don’t hesitate to long with the subject you want to choose for your graduation project. Find something that you really can relate to in all aspects and make sure you have enough time for sketches and tests.

58 minutes w/ karlijn rasing

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Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Hi, my name is Karlijn Rasing and I recently graduated in graphic design at ArtEZ in Arnhem and I hope to become very busy with my own graphic design studio which I am starting right now.

How is the whole graduation experience doing it for you?

Challenging, and in the end it gave a lot of satisfaction, especially when i finally saw the end result before me.

Could you tell us about your research project?

I designed a book in which I described the apple by the five senses: sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch. By describing the senses and characteristics of an apple – on which the consumer bases his opinion / taste – and then to reconstruct en represent that in a book, you get aware of that the apple is reconstructed by influence of the consumers.

My book consists of different parts where you can experience the senses one by one, by example an eatable chapter of the book where I used eatable apple ink and paper.

What were some important influences for the creation of your project the way it’s constructed currently?

I was very inspired by the project ‘Pig 05049’ by Christien Meindertsma in which she researched all the products made from one single pig.

Does your graduation, to you, feel as like it’s your Mona Lisa of work so far?

No, it feels more like the very beginning of a larger project with food–related subjects.

Could you briefly inform us on the subject of your thesis?

It’s about the designer as an activist.

Has your thesis had a certain influence on deciding on the research assignment?if yes, in what way?

It absolutely has. I love the combination of graphic design & social issues. Researching different designers and artists for writing the thesis inspired me a lot.

To what sense would you like this project, and it’s methodology, to correspond to your practice after graduation?

I hope to keep designing social inspired work because I get the most fun and satisfaction out of it.

Where did you do your internship?

At Studio Duel in The Hague

In what way has the experience of doing an internship changed you of your (design)beliefs or (work)habits?

The guys of Studio Duel are both very social– and environmentally involved and take that with them in there design process. They showed me that you can combine that attitude with more commercial work.

Did they serve avocado during lunch?

Haha, yes! The organic ones.

Five years from now, you’ll be doing what?

Design, design, design..

Any tips for upcoming graduate students?

I don’t have any tips because you have to make all the famous mistakes for yourself and be happy about the experience you get in the end.

175 minutes w/ nils rotgans

Category: Project
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Well hello, could you perhaps briefly introduce yourself?

I’m a graduation student interaction design. My focus is to make design with new media and old. Im very interested in information design and interaction design. To combine design and new media to com to a new elegant designs.

How is the whole graduation experience doing it for you?

on the academy we always had a instruction to make a project from. I think we had a lot of freedom but with the last project you could do everything. I thought that was very hard at start. But it is so fantastic to start research project just smal and make it to something big. I have loved the journey the most. Every time an other way to explore. And a totally unexpected end of the project. About the time pressure I think that is very personal, I actually work better with a fast deadline coming up.

Could you tell me something about your research project and what it’s about ?

Well it’s about my dislike on text. And how the dutch politic system and the media around it. Every time there are elections the political parties bring out a book about everything they promise us. That was the start of the project. I’m a person that is very match visual thinker. I don’t like reading a lot. And have a hard time to read every book that the parties give to the public. I wanted to make a visual interface that trimmed every personality and fake promise from the system. A honest image of the dutch politic system. without opinions and promises. Just show what the politic really is doing.

What were some important references for the project?

I had a lot of inspiration in data visualizations from the british and american money streams. And the most of my data i used is calculated by CPB and CBS. That are dutch agencies that keep track of the data what the politic generates.

Does this project to you feel like your mona lisa of projects?

Well, this is my biggest project jet. So in that perspective yes. But it is far from finished i need to find the time, money and energy to make it something real. The part that is now ready is just been researching. It is not reachable for everyone.

Could you tell me a little about your thesis?

Well, it’s could interactive architecture. Its about the media art in public locations. and what the artists do with the fact that more and more of our public space get more cameras and security. The big CCVT spaces that is slowly coming up. We get scanned and put in a archief. we don’t have any control about that and we don’t now about it. With my design i did the same. People that come in to the graduation expo, every one of them i photographed the face. Without their knowledge. after i took the picture i made a “offline” archive. I Printed the faces. My aim was to distribute knowledge from my thesis. So every time a person came in the room he printed his face with the text of my thesis. The person who did’t want his or her face to by in the archief needed to take my thesis.

Where did you do your internship?

At Art+Com a berlin based interactive media studio. They make a lot of installations with new media. i liked them because they work with big project and smal and the design is mostly indoors. it was a great way to learn a lot. A lot of different professions are working there. architects, interaction designers, graphic designers, hackers/developers ect. All to make conceptual work with new media.

Did doing an internship also influence some beliefs you have about design? and how did it change you?

Yes, but i was there for 6 months a lot of time to learn about a lot. I think my work did get a lot more mature. I cant say exactly what changed in my design, it is more the overall look and feel. The thing that did not change was my information design. That was the thing they did not have.

Did they serve avocado’s during lunch?

Ha!? not that i recall. sorry not of the top of my head. its already a year ago.

Next up is the practical assignment, could you tell me a little about that?

Sure!, we worked together with GoShort a short film, film festival in Nijmegen. We were ask to make a new sort of comment system. Like you find on soundcloud, youtube, reddit ect. Well you run fast in problems if you try that. we all know a lot of sh*t get on the internet and we did’t want that. so no text. also there needed to be a way to simple make a commend on a movie. In the and we came up with an idea with drawing a simple line. the hight of the line represented how good you think it was. and the width position with the timeline of the movie. People who went to the festival could do that on there smartphone and on ipads in the main hall, for each movie. In the main hall where also 2 big interactive posters that showed the last commends, best movie until now and stuf like that. On the last day the best movies always get an award. This year every winner of an awards did get the average line from there movie back. we 3d printed that at the last moment for al of the winers. this line was every interesting because you say what part of the movie the public found great and what not so much.

Five years from now, what will you be doing?

I dont know. i want to start same day my own little studio. but i want to work for a nice big studio until than. i want to go back go berlin. but there is no work for my at the time.

Do you have some tips or advice for upcoming graduate or new students?

Listen to this! all day all night https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCy7lLQwToI

i dont realy have any tips. its your own “Journey”.

106 minutes w/ thomas michaël van der lee

Category: Project
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Could you introduce yourself?

My name is Thomas Michaël van der Lee. I’m 25 years old. I’m a graphic designer now.

Well, at least I have my certificate.

Its been a while, but how did you experience the whole ‘GDA graduation’ thing?

At the start you have to come up with a good subject. There isn’t any assignment so the opportunities are endless. I’ve tried many different subjects for my graduation project, it was not immediately going well… It made me feel a bit desperate at some point, but when I finally found my subject I did the project in just a few weeks. When you have a good idea, it will make you confident, and than you can work very hard.

Could you tell me a little bit about your research project?

It started with a very large collection of photo’s, about 3000 pieces, all made by my grandfather on all his travells he did after his retirement. He traveled for about 20 years, to France, Jordan, South Africa and many more other places. I’ve got the photos after he died and it was a strange collection, because all the portraits were taken out by my family. They thought they had to keep the family pictures and all the other pictures, like buildings and nature, were not interesting to store. But I couldn’t throw them away.

What were some important influences for the creation of your project the way it’s constructed currently? Did you take any inspiration out of certain designers or artworks?

Most of the decisions I’ve made, where inspired by my grandfather. I didn’t wanted to make it too personal, but I have made some decisions that have a clear connection to my grandfather. For example, there are a lot of ways to presents the photos, but I choose to make a book. My grandfather had his own book store and printing office. He actually was a bookmaker too.

Does this project, to you, feel as like it’s the ‘Mona Lisa’ of all of your work so far?

I’m very happy with the result. But is Mona Lisa the best of Leonardo da Vinci? I think it is a bit overrated…

Could you briefly inform us on the subject of your thesis?

My thesis is about colors. I talk about colors in public space. About what we know about colors and also how colors are used by artists and designers. For me color is very interesting, and very mysterious too. That’s what I lika about it. We give them some names, but it is very difficult to describe a color. What is the difference between red and green, for example?

Did the subject of your thesis had an influence on deciding on the subject of your research assignment? or are they not connected at all?

They are not really connected, no.

How would you like your research project, and it’s methodology, to correspond to your practice after graduation?

For the research project I did a lot of work by myself. All the pages are cut out by hand and I also printed everything at home. It is really a hand made book and that’s also very visible. That’s what makes it special and I certainly want to keep that hand made aspect in my work. If possible…

Where did you do your internship?

I did an internship at EGBG, the studio of Martijn Engelbregt.

In what way has the experience of doing an internship changed you of your (design)beliefs or (work)habits?

Martijn works very independently. He is doing his own projects or he is trying at least to have a lot of space for his ideas when he is asked by someone else to do a project. One of the things I’ve learned, is that if you have an idea or you want to do something, you just have to go for it. Just give it a try. Sometimes an idea have not the results you were expecting, but sometimes it ends up with a very cool project.

Did they serve avocado during lunch? :)

Yes! …from the organic shop!

Could you inform us on your partner, client and type of assignment for the practical assignment?

I was asked to design a new stamp for PostNL. It had to be a new design for the ‘zakenzegel’. This meant it should become an interesting, but kind of neutral stamp for use by companies. The shapes I used in the design are based on the shape of an envelop.

Five years from now, you’ll be doing what?

Five years, I actually never look that far ahead. For now I have some ideas to make an other book, this time I have a collection of thousands of postcards from France. And… I think I’m going to register at KvK, and try to find some things I can do to earn some money. Then focus on my own projects and just see how far I can get.

Any tips for upcoming graduate students? Or for new students?

Never trust no teachers. (But of course try to learn from them!)