Portsmouth Graphic Design course scoops prizes

The BA (Hons) Graphic Design course, part of the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries at the University of Portsmouth, has been celebrating recognition of teaching excellence after being ranked third in the UK by the Guardian University league tables.  Portsmouth students are demonstrating evidence of this recent success as they receive a high number of industry awards and nominations.

Recent graduate Hannah Storey is exhibiting her work at the forthcoming Design Research for Change Showcase at the London Design Festival, Old Truman Brewery, London from Thursday 19 to Sunday 22 September 2019.

Her project AccessAutism is a free app designed for adults with Asperger’s Syndrome to help them re-centre in the outside world following sensory overloads, by using calming techniques. Senior Lecturer Michael Wamposzyc encouraged Hannah to enter her work into the competition where internationally acknowledged design practitioners select the winners.

Two students won awards after entering their work for the 2019 YCN ‘New Now’ Student Awards programme that represents some of the most urgent and diverse communication challenges across culture and commerce.  Guided by Senior Lecturer Dan McCabe, Rosanna Smith and Adam Warner entered the competition as part of the second year Professional Practice module.

Rosie responded to a brief set by UK charity Art Fund, to create a campaign to raise awareness among students that choosing to visit museums and galleries more often can be a powerful antidote to the stress and anxiety of student life.

Adam responded to a brief set by Peabody, a London-based Housing Association, who wanted a new identity for their community spaces that would unite them together so that the spaces were easily identifiable.

In September, both students attended a ceremony at Tonybee Hall in London in order to collect their respective awards.  Adam was invited by Peabody to show his work at the YCN head office in Shoreditch as part of a celebratory exhibition attended by Peabody residents and members of the executive board.

Dan McCabe said, “As always, we are incredibly proud of all of our students who entered this competition, and we are delighted for Rosie and Adam for their outstanding achievement.”

The London Show for final year graphic design students was part of the 2019 D&AD New Blood graduate festival at the Truman Brewery.  Ashleigh Eilledge, who created a magazine that celebrates women in military, and Tom Aisthorpe, who created a reinvention of a modern dating app called SLIDE, both received ‘one to watch’ awards.

At the show, students Harriet Cox and Lauren Wade were invited by Creative Agency Quantock to present their work as part of a 30-year anniversary event celebrating ‘natural creativity’ at the company’s head office in Bristol.  It was organised in association with D&AD to showcase ‘the most creative talent emerging in the UK today’.

Ethan Muir was nominated for an award by Chrissy Levett, Founder of Creative Conscience for his ‘Homeless still Human’ project aimed at altering perceptions of homelessness.

Exhibition of Ethan Muir’s graphic design


The South West Design and Digital (SWDD) Awards in collaboration with Proctor and Stevenson was relaunched this year with students from 21 universities entering competitions.  Students Claire Dunford won the Graphic Design category with a £1000 prize for her book written about ‘Losing It’ on the Tennis Court and Girbaut Bawangudi was a finalist for the Digital category for his interactive project KITNECT exploring the meaning behind elements of premier football kit design.

Course leader, Sarah Houghton told us “Since these awards, we are delighted to share that Claire has started a full-time Junior Designer role at Dyson, and Girbaut is undertaking a 3 month paid internship at Manchester United”.

Finally, nine students won awards from the prestigious International Society of Typographic Designers (ISTD).  This award results in membership of the ISTD professional society and the coveted affix MISTD.  The Society gave their highest award ‘Commendation’ to Claire Dunford, this being her second award of the summer for her ‘Losing It’ project.

Senior lecturer, Dr Mike Harkins revealed, “Achieving award status is incredibly difficult and the assessment is an extremely rigorous process.  This is an incredible achievement for Portsmouth and we are very proud of our students’ success”.

Congratulations to all students and staff involved.

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