Professional Practice: Reflective Statement

I was looking forward to Professional Practice to learn more about being independent as a designer and professional, I remember thinking the idea of applying for a job would be completely unrealistic at the start of the year, I did not feel confident in my abilities or employability.

At the end of my course now, I am still not exactly sure what I want to do, which I think is okay, there has been a pandemic and due to illness, I was supposed to be finishing my degree next year, so I had not had the time to think about a solid plan. I saw myself with three options, a Masters degree, a job, or working on my own business, but really what I think I want to do is continue to explore these. I have been applying for remote working jobs and freelance work, I was recently accepted as an collaborating artist for Wuzci, an online card subscription company for which I will get commissions, and I plan to explore my own business by refining some products and digitally printing my fabrics to create them. I think I do have a lot of options, and if I get accepted for a full-time job, then my own business would be more part-time, and if I do not, then my business could be developed as more of a full-time thing.

In terms of a Masters, I do not want to rush back into this, just to make sure my health is okay, so I have researched into these close to home, Swansea seems to have a good course which could be an option in the future.

The press pack was developed with my pink and green colour scheme, which also follows through to my website, showing my professional web presence. My website acts as a portfolio of my patterns and work, even showing some of my sketchbook pages and development, and also has my CV and contact information. I have also made my Instagram and Pinterest into business accounts, which helps me to see insights and the reach on my posts. Pinterest has been particularly eye-opening, some of my individual patterns have over 15k views of them, right now an audience of 250k can see my patterns and be directed to my website, and hopefully in the future to a shop with those patterns on products.

I have been looking out for pattern contests to take part in, Spoonflower weekly contests was great for me as it helped me to refine my style and patterns, and with a system of voting with likes, I saw which patterns were more successful than others, which was very useful for my graduate collection as I had a number of weeks working on patterns before this anyway. I also took part in some Ohh Deer contests, a bottle design contest, some art contests, and I was looking into doing New Designers Awards, unfortunately the University was not registered, but I can still take my ideas that I had started to develop for that onto my own collections now.

My immediate future plans will be to start creating some small scale giftware products to make and sell myself, so really get re-acquainted with construction and my sewing machine. I also will continue to look for remote work, even a few hours a week that would help support my immediate life plans of moving in with my boyfriend.

I will continue to take part in any contests that I see, the Spoonflower ones that give a theme are great as they inspire me with things that I have not really thought of before.

Author: tahliadavid

BA(hons) Textiles student at Cardiff Metropolitan University

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