Marie Dalle is French and studied at MàNAA (the French Foundation Year) at Ecole Estienne in Paris, before coming to LCF to study BA (hons) Creative Direction for Fashion. Here she tells us about her experience of the course so far.
What made you want to study at LCF?
The reputation and the variety of degrees offered by LCF is what drove me to apply, along with the location. I wanted to study fashion abroad, and I was especially drawn to the creativity and open-mindedness of London, where you always feel like you are part of something exiting, close to the heart of the Industry.
Why did you choose BA Creative Direction for Fashion?
When I applied for my BA, I had no clear idea of my professional future, but I knew I was interested in both fashion and communications. The course offered a mix of both and allowed me to explore fully my capacities and my tastes in a wide variety of techniques, medias and topics.
What has been the highlight of the course so far?
To me, the main highlight of Creative Direction for Fashion is the diversity of practices we have in a single course: writing, research and theory in Cultural Studies; and the more creative, more image-driven part of the course where we're encouraged to experiment with everything from video, to photography, illustration or new technologies. This variety is perfect if you're looking for the opportunity to find or refine your style and discover your strengths and your tastes.
What have been the biggest challenges?
I think you have to constantly be willing to make changes and compromises: living in London, working part-time, interning, going to university and doing your projects all at once can get very overwhelming. It took me some time to realise that you cannot do everything, that you have to prioritise some things over the others. It was also difficult to realise you can't be good at everything. I think almost everyone is faced with failure during their time in higher education, and the challenge is to find a better solution, to be able to say "stop, this is too much" and to reconsider what you want and what you can do. A big part of the process is trying not to compare yourself to others because, especially in a creative degree, this can be very counter-productive. You have to appreciate yourself and be proud of your work, and that can be very difficult.
What has the teaching been like?
Our teachers all come from very different backgrounds and bring the wealth of their own personal experiences to the course in many ways. They are also easily accessible and happy to help with feedback and support.
Have you begun to focus in on one area of creative direction?
I always had an interest in layout design, which I refined through many projects during my first two years of BA. My focus is mainly on graphic design and branding, the fields in which I am now hoping to work in in the future.
Have you done any industry projects on the course? If so, how have you found them?
We had a few brand-focused projects and one industry project with smartphone app Knomi, which I used as an opportunity to try something completely new to me (Virtual Reality and game design) and quite enjoyed.
Is there a balance of theory and practical?
Yes, very much.
What advice would you give students considering studying on BA Creative Direction at LCF?
Make the most of it. Go to lectures, go to extra talks, make friends with people from all courses and colleges, go to workshops, use the libraries, use London to go to exhibitions and galleries, intern as much as you can and take time to relax. Inspirations and experiences are everywhere, you just have to go out there and try.