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Iga Kampa graduated from the Fashion Design Technology Graduate Diploma in 2019, and is currently studying MA Fashion Artefact at London College of Fashion.
Actually, I did. I dreamed of a career in fashion since I can remember, even though I am not sure that I fully realised until many years later what the fashion world really looks like and how working in this industry is in reality, it seems very different from the outside.
At the moment I am finishing my master’s collection of wearable, leather artefacts that I have been working on since June. Due to the pandemic situation, we will be showing our work on a virtual showcase that would include photoshoots and a fashion film with our collections so I am really curious and looking forward how this is going to turn out in this new format.
I am also working on a very exciting film collaboration with young creatives from my home country (Poland) that was originally supposed to provide context for my master’s collection but grew to be much more. I believe this is a huge opportunity for all of us to make our work seen by combining our skills and vision together. Unfortunately, this project had to be postponed until next year because of the travel restrictions as the collaboration team is spread across Europe.
My plan after graduating is to stay in London, because it really feels like the right place to be, especially at the beginning of pursuing a career in fashion, there are a lot of opportunities here. Even though I come from a fashion background I have realised on my course that I would also love to try making costumes and pieces for performances and film. It would make me happy to have the ability to use a variety of media and continue experimenting with new techniques and materials, that is what keeps me excited about my work and I am hoping to find a profession that would give me the ability to continue to do so.
Studying at UAL was always one of my goals even though I remember how unattainable it seemed to me for many years. Obviously, the University has a great reputation worldwide and it offers one of a kind wide diversity of courses. I wanted to be a part of that creative community, it seemed like an achievement to even be accepted so I eventually decided to apply to one of the LCF preparatory courses for students who want to study at postgraduate level - Graduate Diploma Fashion Design Technology.
After graduating from my Fashion Design BA course in Warsaw I came to London for an internship in a fashion brand and I immediately felt like this is the place where I want to be. I started looking for UAL courses shortly after and I came across the Graduate Diploma program which seemed like a perfect opportunity for me as I wasn’t quite ready for the MA. I think it was a great step because through this year I had time to realise what I really want to do next.
I liked that it was a very hands-on course, we were encouraged to experiment and test everything, to think outside of the box about what fashion should look like. We were also allowed to decide on the final outcomes and what we want to take out of this course that would help us in the next stage of our career. For example, I realised half-way through the course that I want to progress into the MA Fashion Artefact course which is a very conceptual, open, makers course so instead of sewing a collection of garments I was creating moulds and making body installations made out of polyurethane foam. It inspired me to be open to new possibilities, learn about unconventional materials and that knowledge and approach truly helped me on my progression to the MA.
It’s hard to pick one as for me it was like stepping into an entirely new world of how a fashion course can be taught. It changed my view of how fashion can be done and what is important in the process of making your collection and how to make it really interesting.
You have to be prepared to have your perspective on how to design fashion changed, and just trust the process. It is very different from a BA course, at least from my experience.