Dissertation- PDP

The last three years, studying Graphic Communication at Cardiff School of Art and Design, has undoubtedly changed my outlook on life, not just within design, but how I approach day to day issues. When I started my degree, I initially struggled with the concept of university life, and I did not commit myself to the level of dedication that was expected and required in order to fully understand the coursework and be able to produce satisfactory assignments. I had not anticipated the leap from A level to degree and fell short in the work I produced in the first year.  It was evident from my Year 1 marking that I was not taking the learning on board and not carrying out the necessary research around the design topics that would enhance my understanding and enable me to produce higher calibre work. After my first year, I was lucky enough to secure a one week summer work experience in London, working at a design agency called Grey. This had a big influence on me and was the first real time I had experienced what it would be like to work within the design industry, and this made me realise that this is where I wanted my career to take me, I wanted to be a graphic designer. My second year on the course was certainly an improvement on my first year, I had more of an insight into what was required of me, however I still did not commit to research and reading as much as I should have and I feel this was still being reflected in my work. I needed a greater holistic understanding of the principles and attributes of design and to more fully understand the mechanics and technologies being used in modern design concepts. To be a good designer you must take pride in your work. Working towards these goals I improved on my overall results, however I still felt that with more work and dedication and working on my organisational and structural management I could achieve even better work. By my third year I believe I had the maturity and the passion to produce high quality work, I had gained a good understanding of design principles, I worked hard to review and explore designers work, both historical and modern which increased my understanding and appreciation of outlining factors that are seen to influence design in different walks of life. Constellation has played a crucial factor on changing the way I have turned my study around, reflecting on my work and experiences has really helped me learn. I truly believe that design is what I want to do and be involved in and I’m excited to pursue my career within the graphic communication industry.


At the beginning of year three, my first tutorial back my dissertation tutor announced that he would be leaving and handing us over to someone else. At first this, this resulted in finding myself very anxious, as I had previous tutorials with this tutor, which made me feel save and confident to express my ideas and concerns, as he had helped me in the past. The fact I was assigned a new tutor was scary at first, but Sarah has become an important asset to my learning curve. Not only has Sarah turned out to be very helpful and always at hand, she has also given me the confidence to believe that I can excel within my course.


My dissertation has undoubtedly changed my thinking and perception towards the way design is thought about and communicated through many forms of media. It has given me an incredible awareness of the roles of cultural backgrounds and influences and how these relate to change and inspire all forms of both historic and current designs that we can see all around us. Ii am excited at the prospects of what design and communication can bring to us all in the future and how far it can go with ever increasing advances in technology and though processes around how we can influence people and even nations on even a global scale through a piece of design. Although graphic design is my ultimate career ambition and what I see myself being surrounded by throughout my adulthood, an immense part of my life is football. With great passion for the sport, and such a strong interest, relating to the FIFA World Cup, I felt that this is what my dissertation should be based on. Writing on a topic I am so interested in, allowed me to indulge into my research as I was more motivated to go into greater depth. I was able to explore and discover many aspects of the FIFA World Cup that I was unaware of, as my research revealed many individual’s thoughts and decisions, on how and why these different designs came about. That aside, witnessing how much research and depth I have put into my study, I now know and understand the importance of how much research I need to administer for my projects. Writing this study has really helped me with my academic skills, in regards to structure, organisation, literation and language. An important skill which I have developed throughout the construction of the study is paraphrasing. How I have learnt to interpret other’s thoughts and ideas into my own understanding. Although I spent a considerable amount of time researching into different eras of the FIFA World Cup and the design throughout each tournament, making sure my study was well balanced and thought through, I did not realise how short of time this would leave me to structure and complete this study.


From this whole experience, I have learnt that if I put my mind to a task, allocating time and effort into my work, I can produce well thought and critical ideas. This has helped within my design work, which has been drastically improved since my time at Cardiff Metropolitan School of Art and Design. Although my attitude and commitment to my course started off poor, I now believe that I am a person who can go on much greater prospects due to the increase of work ethic and motivation to do well and become a successful graphic designer.


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