Talent Spotters: Staffordshire University – Art & Design

Designer David Moody, from 39 design, checks out what’s on offer at the Staffordshire University art and design degree show, as part of our Talent Spotters series of guest reviews of graduate shows from around the country.

Designer David Moody, from 39 design, checks out what’s on offer at the Staffordshire University art and design degree show, as part of our Talent Spotters series of guest reviews of graduate shows from around the country.

Staffordshire University has its annual Show and Tell degree show based in Stoke on Trent. Every year there is always a lot of great work to see and this year was again, no exception. From Graphic Design, Advertising, Photography and Textiles, through to Animation, Fine Art and Ceramics, there is just so much to see.

Starting with the Graphic Design part of the show, the first piece that captures you is a well crafted piece by Hakim Mahamdallie. The main role of graphic design is to communicate something visually in the most effective way possible, which this does.

Tom Davall describes himself as dedicated and conscientious person with a passion for design and typography. Shown here is a rebrand of the Joules Brewery, reflecting on its history of first being brewed by monks in the 12th Century.

Another piece of work that stood out was by William Teal. A manly range of Pure Filth soaps which had a great commercial look and feel to them.

A great considered piece of typographic illustration by Olly Buxton which displays lots of interesting facts and figures about lightning.

Moving on to the Surface Pattern and Textiles part of the show, which is always stunning with so many inspiring designs and artistic endeavours, you always come away feeling uplifted and inspired. I had the chance to talk to Sarah Parton who has produced an amazing range for the show. Her technique and considered colour palette can be adapted to a lot of commercial products and designs. Also along with the other students, Sarah is also looking forward to exhibiting at the New Designers exhibition in London.

Advertising and Brand Management is always another interesting part of the degree show. Personally, what I like top see is something that effectively communicates the idea and not only makes you think but also illustrates a common problem that needs to be addressed. This year I thought the work by Joe Kaloczi was very effective in accomplishing this. Using pictorial soundwaves to communicate peoples “cry for help”, really got the message across.

Product Design at Staffordshire University is yet another course that always has a great end of year show. For me some of the best commercial applications for their designs were by Ollie Stevens and his modular street furniture …

… John Ditchburn and his adaptable playground designs …

… Joseph Rapacchietta and his e-cycle …

… and Alixandra Lord with a design for an outdoor leisure space.

Another passion of mine is Photography and again, there were several pieces of work that I was attracted to this year. But for me the work by Kane Longden stood out by far. I think he has a very bright future ahead as his work has an always in demand commercial skill and beautiful style.


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