Ricky Blair Social Improvement Toolkit Product Design
Until March 2020 there was a level of stability and certainty in what we did, things we worked towards base upon tried and test ways and methods. In short, we knew much of what was coming. This has been a year like no other, one which has challenged us all beyond our known horizons, one which has turned us upside down and which continues to twist and turn as it unfolds.
This year for the first time we have redefined how we showcase the work of our graduates, how we support them into the next stage of their creative journey and how we communicate the quality of their work to an international audience. To do this we have carefully crafted from scratch a curated ‘platform’ that captures and communicates in a highly professional manner the strength, diversity and quality of the work they have produced. To do this we have worked with Regular Practice, a design duo one of which is a Sheffield Hallam Graphic Design alumnus.
The term ‘platform’ refers to a place where people get on and get off, where they meet (with) others, chance encounters, beginnings and endings. Our ‘platform’ includes work from our undergraduate and postgraduate students and from across a breadth of disciplines, it marks a significant point in their transformation from the academy into their professional lives or further study. Of course, there is much more to learn about the students’ work than we are able to reveal but we hope that you will get a sense of the quality and strength of the work produced, the partnerships forged between students and their interests, the professional disciplines and the wider community that they are cemented within. We also hope that you will get a feel for the opportunities that our students have to engage with real world issues and problem, regionally, nationally and globally, and the depth of enquiry our students go to respond to opportunities provided and uncover latent needs.
I, and all the staff in the Department of Art & Design, take great joy in celebrating the successes of our students and the class of 2020 has truly excelled in the face of adversity – they embody the graduate attributes we uphold; confidence, creativity and resilience – they are also enterprising, adaptable, curious and globally minded.
Roger Bateman, Head of Department of Art and Design, Sheffield Hallam University