Design and the Market introduction

A  rousing introduction from Mike Press on our new Design and the Market module here at DJCAD  which has been developed in response to designer and  industry comments that most UK Design graduates, although extremely creative, lack business management, do not understand their clients and also lack communication skills.  Over the last two years I have been very fortunate to meet previous DJCAD graduates and they too felt that they would have benefited greatly by having some kind of business education.  We are not however learning how to set up a business!

Well I have an admission and Im not ashamed to say but I was the one who thought I’d be guided on how to set up a business, that at the end of the module I would have my vision of Judy Scott Designs all ready to go but as Mike said we’ve moved on from the 80’s, where that would have been the case.  Instead we will “Find our own vision” “Craft our Future” “Understand how a design business works”, we will meet designers who have done just this and will also be guided by tutors who have a wealth of experience in this field Christina Hirst is module leader and  has an extremely successful international jewellery design business, Professor Mike Press author, researcher, international specialist in Design Management and  Programme Director of Craft and Design  at DJCAD and Lindsey Gardiner, textile designer, illustrator and fine artist.

We will be carrying out enterprise research and also exploring a personal enterprise proposal – my second big dream may well come true yet  – watch this space

T shaped practitioner – New challenges New Learning Opportunities

Duncan of Jordanstone is changing.  In September 2011 as new third years we are the first to have a choice of modules which will transform us from ‘I’ shaped practitioners to ‘T’ shaped practitioners.  As Textile Designers, we will be sharing our learning with the departments of Jewellery and Interior and Environmental Design, we will still learn our trade, with me printing dyeing and designing but we will also share ideas with the other disciplines using the Expansive Learning Modules.  To quote Prof Mike Press, Programme Director of Design and Craft at DJCAD  “we will have the depth of learning from our chosen discipline and with the Partnerships, Networks and Connections and  the Expansive Learning Modules we will learn to work across the creative industries, work as a team and be business aware, giving us a breadth of knowledge too. This will help to make us more employable and be able to thrive in the new world which awaits us on graduating”.  With an interest in surface – textiles designers will be able to understand and also learn about artifacts and the space around us, we will connect with social issues and following on from Jonathan Baldwin’s Design Studies in year 2 we will learn more about service design, help with social challenges and the needs of industry.

Dissertation has become a word of the past. In semester two we will start our work towards 4th year – I made the decision to choose Design in the Market Place – with this I will learn what is exactly involved with setting up in business and will have access to the University Alumni and the staff who not only teach but are successful in business.  Exciting stuff indeed.

Research and Creative Practise is a module  for those who still wish to research and they will be a buddied with an academic to support them through their research. For those who are interested in International Business the Made in China module is there to learn more about the country which is becoming the most dominant in design culture and manufacturing –  a trip to China is also a possibility.

Over summer the lecturers looked at how things could improve for students by looking at what worked in other places. We can expect clearer assessment criteria, clearer system of feedback, written feedback, and forward looking feedback.


Yesterday I found out more about the ELM Critical Making, Function and Fabrication – I will be learning  laser cutting, sublimation printing, mould making, vacumn forming, electroforming and embedding electrical components. And that’s just for starters and tomorrow we have a visitor from the RSA to talk about our Partnerships Networks and Connections Module more about that tomorrow!