Week Three: Development

Updated: Dec 9, 2021

What is your development and reflection process?

Christoph Miller:

  • Get your hands dirty asap!

  • Try ideas out quickly.

  • Test.

  • Take a step back and take a break at times.

Verònica Fuerte:

  • Spend a lot of time finding the simplicity of a poster, an illustration or character design.

Sam Bompass:

  • The more connections you make, the more likely you are to come up with a good idea.

  • Meet people.

Vince Frost:

  • You're the client of your self-initiated project.

  • Live with the designs.

  • Put your designs on a wall and tweak them.

James Stringer:

  • Created workshops.

  • Discuss as a group at the end about how it went.

  • Document each project.

How has production, risk, failure and your own personal ambition affected the outcome?

Christoph Miller:

  • Create an environment to try out things, learn and fail.

  • Risk, failure and personal ambition affect the outcome a lot.

  • Fewer limits with a self-initiated project.

  • You can become frustrated with self-initiated projects because you keep trying new things.

  • The more you try and invest, the better your project usually gets.

  • Not all self-initiated projects will take off.

Verònica Fuerte:

  • Do a lot of research to minimise risk.

Vince Frost:

  • Self-initiated projects take time.

  • Self-doubt comes with self-initiated projects.

Sam Bompass:

  • Not all projects go to plan but learn from them.

James Stringer:

  • Have a careful balance between client/commercial and self-initiated work.

Eric Kessels on the Power of Failure

  • Confusion makes the world go round.

  • Don't be afraid of making mistakes.

  • Make an idiot out of yourself (once a day).

  • If no one hates it, no one loves it.

  • Embrace impossible ideas.

  • A good idea is boarderless.

  • Be free to cross disciplines.

  • Mistakes are good.

  • Mistakes can inspire.

  • Mistakes can lead to a more effective outcome.

Image: https://www.kesselskramer.com/project/hans-brinker-budget-hotel

Design Without Boundaries; Visual Communication in Transition

  • The most important thing is not to know but know how to know.

  • Capitalise on strengths and be aware of natural abilities.

  • The excitement of discovery leads to great enthusiasm.

  • Designers are responsible for a significant part of our societies cultural production.

  • Every graphic work has relative degrees of success and failure.

Workshop Challenge

The work of designer Dangyang Ma initially inspired me. She came across the idea of "benign violation", a mechanism of humour proposed by the Humour Research Lab, which dictates that three conditions must be satisfied for humour to occur. (1) a situation is a violation, (2) the situation is benign, and (3) both perceptions occur simultaneously. However, I can't think of anything I could create that wouldn't be similar to hers and original. Instead, I want to take the definition of the benign violation theory, which suggests that for anything to be funny, it should threaten one's beliefs about how the world should be. With this in mind, I want to run with another idea I had in mind: Dadaism. Although I have struggled to find one simple definition of Dada, Dada became an international movement and eventually formed the basis of Surrealism in Paris after the war. I feel that both Dadaism and Surrealism threatened its audiences' beliefs on how the world should be, which is what the humour research lab defines where humour comes from.

Image: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/d/dada

Image: https://www.artyfactory.com/art_appreciation/art_movements/surrealism.htm

As well as this, two of my favourite comedians/artists have been heavily inspired by both Dada and Surrealism: Noel Fielding and Jim Moir. In an interview with BBC 6 Sounds, Noel mentions that the surrealists:

"Were quite funny often".

-Noel Fielding

Image: http://www.hooliganartdealer.com/hooliganartdealer/Noel_Fielding.html

And in an interview, Jim Moir describes the Dadaists as:

"Just having a laugh."

-Jim Moir

Image: https://www.mrporter.com/en-us/journal/fashion/jim-moir-vic-reeves-endless-joy-interview-1780324

When looking at Dada art, I immediately think of collage. From its roots in European Dadaism in the early years of the twentieth century, shadowing modernism and tracing its way through photography, collage is a medium as diverse as it is politically charged. Emerging as a reaction to the First World War, collage allowed artists to interact with existing materials – anything from newsprint and magazines to maps, tickets and propaganda and photographs – to rip them apart and then reassemble them, creating visually dynamic hybrids.

Coined by Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso, the term ‘collage’ points towards a medium simultaneously serious and tongue-in-cheek; a technique that is deeply referential of the political world in which the works were produced. Via the assemblage of different objects and images, collage interrogates the fundamental concept of what it is to create art whilst offering a prismatic reflection of the social change and upheaval of the twentieth century. From the originators and pioneers of the form to more contemporary practitioners, AnOther presents its top 10 collage artists.

After this part of my research, I adjusted my brief slightly to make it more realistic and specific with the time frame in mind.

Project Brief
Download PDF • 51KB

Image: Picasso and Collage - Weiner Elementary

Image: https://www.anothermag.com/art-photography/3318/top-10-collage-artists-hannah-hoch-to-man-ray

Image: https://www.anothermag.com/art-photography/3318/top-10-collage-artists-hannah-hoch-to-man-ray

Inspired, I decided to go to my local bookstore/second-hand shop to see if I could find some magazines to create my own collages.

They mainly had National Geographic magazines which worried me slightly as my brief is about creating humour through a still image, and humour isn't often found in National Geographic magazines. However, I grabbed a few and brought them home and began looking through them to see what I could put together. I enjoyed this process as although it was a little restrictive as I didn't have a wide range of magazines to find material in, It allowed me to exercise my humour and seek out what could potentially be funny.

The first collage I began to put together was of an image of Santa Claus, sitting on a canon with his hat disguised as a sharks fin. I thought this was a good start as these images put together out of context created a whole new meaning, and humour I hope. I like the juxtaposition between the friendly Santa Claus and the not so friendly canon and sharks. Although I like Christmas, I don't like the consumerist side and stuff like Black Friday. If there was an article discussing the negative aspects of Christmas, then this collage could potentially accompany it.

The feedback I got from fellow students was positive and encouraged me to delve further into collage.

I decided to adjust the image and add a little colour by changing it to Santa Claus sitting on a house in a field in the middle of summer, still with his hat disguised as a shark fin. I felt as though this ticked the box of Surrealism and Dadaism, with it also being a little dark but also humorous. I liked that Santa Claus is almost hanging around Christmas, sitting on the chimney, in what could be the middle of August.

From here, I began finding images that suited my own aesthetic interests. Blue and pink pastel colours are a favourite of mine and feature a lot in my photography, so I wanted to see if I could make a humourous collage with these colours.

I then found that I was building a narrative, separate storyboards, of a stolen hat.

This Image got some positive feedback which I was happy with.

I then began playing around with other images I found in magazines to see if I could build the narrative even further.


I have really enjoyed using collage for this project. Collage is something I have always found interesting and have wanted to work with it but haven't had the opportunity. I was fixed on Harriet's comment about not deciding on a medium right away and letting the process and research answer that for you, which I've done. Although it's slightly worrying in such a short amount of time to think you have all the answers right away, it's also liberating and reassuring to let it happen and accept that it can work in your favour, or not, and that's okay. At least you've learnt something along the way. As well as this, I thought collage was going to restrict as I couldn't find a huge variety of magazines to work with; however, it has made me realise that maybe what you're searching for isn't in the most obvious of places. I didn't think I'd find anything humorous in National Geographic, but the images I found suited my aesthetic interests and brief perfectly.


flex.falmouth.ac.uk. (n.d.). Log in to canvas. [online] Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/954/pages/week-3-lecture-development?module_item_id=56216 [Accessed 11 Oct. 2021].

KesselsKramer. (n.d.). Hans Brinker Budget Hotel. [online] Available at: https://www.kesselskramer.com/project/hans-brinker-budget-hotel [Accessed 11 Oct. 2021].

Tate (2017). Dada – Art Term | Tate. [online] Tate. Available at: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/d/dada [Accessed 16 Oct. 2021].

Weiner Elementary. (n.d.). Picasso and Collage. [online] Available at: https://www.weinerelementary.org/picasso-and-collage.html [Accessed 15 Oct. 2021].

Baker, H. (2014). Top 10 Collage Artists: Hannah Höch to Man Ray. [online] AnOther. Available at: https://www.anothermag.com/art-photography/3318/top-10-collage-artists-hannah-hoch-to-man-ray [Accessed 16 Oct. 2021].

BBC. (n.d.). BBC Radio 6 Music - Three Minute Epiphany, Noel Fielding: On Surrealism. [online] Available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06xcnj1 [Accessed 16 Oct. 2021].

Poynor, R. (1998). Design without boundaries : visual communication in transition. London: Booth-Clibborn Editions Accessed 16 Oct. 2021].

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