Dissertation Constellation Essay Prep PDP

Like level four of constellation I was unsure of who to pick for Constellation as all I had to go on was the description of what we would study with each lecturer but at this early stage we didn’t know where we were going with our studies and even at level five I was torn with the idea of do I try and go for something new or do I stick with Martyn whose lectures have benefited me quite a lot throughout level 4. In the end I stuck with Martyn which gave me the chance to refresh on a few theories covered in level 4 as well as introducing other theories by notable individuals in their respected fields such as Juhani Pallasmaa and the Thinking hand that has really helped with my experimental practice on Maker when responding to the briefs, which highlights how we think and work with tools and ideas as a physical entity where the tools are essentially an extended external part of use that help us for fill what we want to achieve with our material outcomes. I am happy that I got Martyn for both constellation options as I don’t know if I would have got to this stage and high quality that my feedback is stating with any other tutor.

After the second year constellation sessions I went back through the theories I had been studying to give me ideas of what I could write my dissertation prep and my eventual essay topic like usual I was thinking oh bloody hell panic and I simply threw out so many ideas that relate to three key areas

  • What I learnt from constellation
  • What I enjoy making and how this relates to processes and techniques that relate to constellation theories
  • What I have learnt in my studies on Maker

Around this time I was as part of my course choosing workshops within Maker that would benefit me most in regards to the outcomes I had presented the term before and I was recommended to take glass and really enjoyed working with the material so I thought if dissertation is about picking a topic that you will be interested in that will keep you going until the hand in that relates to your individual studies from constellation why not take the risk and see where it goes.

Presenting my ideas to Martyn the idea from his professional opinion he believed was really interesting and in comparison to the theories studied in constellation was something that was not covered in the dialogue of the theories but could easily be used as an artefact of study in relation to the theories covered in particular Juhani Pallasmaas the thinking hand and Tim Ingolds making theory. As well as speaking to Martyn about this he recommended speaking to Natasha Mayo head of Ceramics in Cardiff who much like Ingrid the head of Maker is a brain box and knowledge of the idea of Phenomenology of glass. Using Glass as a discussion topic Natasha was really helpful and practically gave me a possible essay equivalent amount of information to use on the topic which covered not just the materiality meanings of the material structure but how the material can link to our embodied experience of our surroundings and when we are making, and having looked into Natasha’s work in ceramics and the surface of skin and recent exhibitions in Cardiff with the Sensorial object exhibition in Craft in the bay and Fragile in Cardiff museum I know for a fact that Natasha knows her stuff and there is plenty I can take from her work despite it being  focused on the material of ceramics that is  re interpretable to Glass.

Also Natasha further explained the ideology of objects in more than one dimensional means of thinking such as the thickness of layering materials and how like materials and our means and processes of creating can be reflected on the layers of thinking and embodiment of the maker him or herself. And as a final point how when a piece is finalised and displayed as a person viewing the object without seeing the process behind the scenes that resulted in the object’s creation  you feel a series of physical experiences that through visually studying the object in a passive and static state allows you to almost possibly visualise how it was made. To add to my research results Natasha recommended looking into the theoretical philosophical theories of Julia Kristeva and her study entitled Milk and Maurice Merleau Ponty whose theories focus mainly on Phenomenology.

With all this data to go through I was not able to go through all the resources available due to time restraints and being unable to gain access to copies of the necessary books or certain individuals around the university such as Clive Kasoo, who research into phenomenology is of a greater level of study than Natasha which is going to be impossible to book to see before the deadline as well as the two theorist Natasha has mentioned but with more time afterwards will be more rounded and manipulated into the structure of my dissertation.

In conclusion it has been a long struggle for me in many ways such as finding a topic to talk about, relevant studies and theories outside of those in constellation that are suitable, organising the structure of the essay and making sure everything is presented correctly and to the best of my ability. Despite everything that has happened im really happy to be at a reasonably good level of theories and information for dissertation and I am looking forward to seeing where the essay will go and how the object/artifact that will accompany the essay as part of the marking profile will reflect my understanding theoretically, professionally and how this will reflect on my understanding of making from before I came to Cardiff to study Artist Designer Maker to now and how this can potentially help me in my future practice and career aspects. I guess I will have to wait and see try my best, cover as much relevant detail as possible, keep on top of things and basically see how everything pans out.




What to make

For the make your mark project ive been asked along with visual data in the form of blog and sketchwork as examples to produce a series of outcomes that relate to my interests and individualities in the making process. At this stage im pretty sure im not the only one that is struggling to figure out what I actually want to make and what materials I want to choose.

At the moment and this is a worrying thing im enjoying making and getting involved with the actual outcomes and trial and errors coming forward but i feel im lagging behind and not wanting to produce anything because I cant find what I enjoy making easily and more to the point why this is a sellling object and uniqueness it has to the market. As someone who has confidence issues im sure this will get better in time but its one of those things that one side of the situation will always dominate judgement.

However ive made a start at some mindmaps and moodboards of objects that I like and artists that’s work I find inspiring and as someone who doesn’t like drawing because im not a confident drawer I hope this will help me push forward in this area and show how ive changed from the way I worked in first year and how this can also evolve in third year. Entering into third term things are hectic but some projects are slowly coming to their endpoint and hopefully I will have a reasonable amount of time at the end before exhibit setup to fix any problems that may occur, whether this is possible I wont know till later on but it is always best to set realistic goals and try your best to reach them then have no goals and nothing to aim for.

Second week Breakdown

Much like last week finding the balance of juggling all the projects is not easy and things aren’t exactly running as smoothly as hoped here’s the low down :-

  • Bams – the silicone moulds are finishing off and the wax casts will be put together hopefully by the end of this week – the wax tree hopefully will be in the same boat as it were. im aiming to start the dipping process next week and be done by next week as well – as for burning out the wax and the bronzing process im guessing will be the week after that, meaning over the deadline for BAMS which is a shame but couldn’t be avoided circumstance wise – but the medal will be on display in craft in the bay in march so it’ll still be shown in an exhibition like way.
  • Lamp – Maquettes have been made in several materials – I need to speak to pip to ensure the details of the lamp before posting online – material experiments are going well and both project sketchbooks are being kept relatively up to date – The aim is to have the lamp nearing completion by the end of february giving enough time to focus on everything else that will affect the outcome quality wise.
  • Constellation/Essay – I’ve spoken to my tutor about my ideas and all previous essays and based on what i am hoping to look into I will be sticking with Martyn as my constellation essay advisor, however this will not be confirmed until the 8th February.
  • Faking It – Initial ideas have been discussed with the other members of my team, given the circumstances we are trying to do as much as we can experimentally so constructive feedback will give us the best overall hope of a good quality outcome.
  • Work Experience – Despite circumstances the feedback was quite good and I hope to undertake further placements and build up a portfolio of work to present in the end of year show as well as some possible 3d outcomes.


Essay Dissertation

So now the moment has come to decide what our written dissertation of third year before graduation will be about, plus whic dissertation lecturer we will be assigned to based upon what we want to talk about individually and their expertise.

For my essay I am interested in the area of technology and making, in the sense of how technology has changed the perception of art and makes things that seem impossible to make physically easy to do digitally. This was a major reason that artist designer maker appealed to me when choosing courses because of the broad range of materials. And with this quite broad background from my course would open opportunities.

So martyn my chosen lecturer for first and second year is the best lecturer to help me in this area which im really pleased about, and let’s face it he has put up with me for two years so a bit longer shouldn’t hurt to much.  However I will not know for definate who I am assigned to till February 8th

Faking IT AGE Cymru/Sharing ideas

Age Cymru is a Cardiff based charity organisation that aims to get those who are unable to get out and about so much for whatever reasons and circumstances these may be.

The Faking it Project I believe is entering its third or fourth year as a project within Cardiff Metropolitan and in collaboration with AGE Cymru we’ve been asked to produce a set along with scenic backgrounds and props when relevant or needed based upon the chosen book picked by our team. And our chosen book was James And The Giant Peach all in aid of marking what would have been Roald Dahl’s 100th Birthday.

With the full number of fellow students in the group not being present from the beginning I buddied up with Will from product Design. Early on before our team meeting with the Committee we decided that from the book the cover page was the idea the peach and the empire state being two important parts of the book and the movie.

Speaking to the committee me and Will shared our ideas, The idea of interaction if possible was taken positively and the idea of the peach and the empire state building went the same, Really the feedback said work on the idea but dont hold onto the image you’re thinking of too tight or you’ll be in trouble and with the visit to the Marriott the following Thursday picking the best spot would be a fight or should I say pitching battle with the even other teams. How that will work out is yet to be seen

Faking It meeting

The official first day of the faking it experience having spoken to Bethan regarding the project whilst still in first year I was really happy to get this field option and looking forward to what would come from it.

to start things of on a slow pace cos you know that won’t be the case later on we were given the project brief and having assigned ourselves to teams of individuals we didn’t know prior to this, which is difficult because half the group I know and are from my own course Maker. The focus of this project would be on one of the many books by Roald Dahl which would be explained in more detail later today when the charity group arrives.

the chosen books for the project were

  • James And The Giant Peach
  • BFG
  • Matilda
  • Charlie And The Chocolate Factory
  • The Witches
  • Fantastic Mr Fox
  • George’s Marvellous Medicine
  • Danny The Champion Of The World

as well as meeting the committee of AGE Cymru there are two workshops that will be of use to use all as a field group these being

3D MakerBot – Joe Venables

Laser Cutter – Maff Harries

having only used these once last year a refresh on both is absolutely necessary like practically everything at the moment so fingers crossed I can catch up.



essay feedback

I must admit I struggled with the layout of my essay structuring even though martin my constellation tutor liked and pretty much told me to stick with the idea so I will take on board the advice given.

feedback 2016

feedback 2016 part 2

I was intending to use more than one material and was intending to discover how an object that is seen is viewed from touch when hidden from site. Realistically I want my dissertation to answer how art and artists respectively are perceived through their work and answer what makes us drawn to something over something else. Whether this is achievable time will tell.