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Developing your practice with Graphic Design for teenagers

Isabella Jeanne,
Written by
Hamish Chohan
Published date
27 April 2022

Isabella Jeanne was born in The Hague, Netherlands, where she lived for 10 years before moving to London. “Growing up, I have always shared my passion with the fine arts, by drawing and painting. However, in the past two years, I have developed a new passion for photography and graphic design.” Continuing this passion Isabella joined the Graphic Design for 13 to 16 Year Olds (Online Short Course) during the summer and shares her experiencing of continuing her development online.

“This course has helped me gain an understanding of my own style and interests and has ensured me to be confident with my idea development.”

Find out more about what goes into knock-out graphic design portfolio from tutor, Rachel Kirk, in How to create a graphic design portfolio.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I am currently studying on an International Baccalaureate programme in Central London. I take a range of subjects, including Visual Arts, English, and Dutch at Higher Level. I have been able to combine my visual arts and linguistic interests which helped me look at graphic design in a completely new way. I am graduating in May 2021, and planning to continue my studies in the graphic design field.

In 2019, I created my first zine called Youth Culture in London, which I did all the photography and graphic design for. Doing this self-directed project made me fall in love with the editorial and communicative world that exists within fine art. Since then, I have been exploring a range of new mediums, working with digital software to explore and learn new skills.

What did you enjoy most about your short course?

The ability to be challenged not only in the thinking process when developing new ideas but also by executing an idea using techniques or mediums, I haven't thought of using before.

How has your short course benefited your education and/or personal development?

The graphic design course has helped me so much, not only towards my portfolio development but by also culturally exposing me to new artists that have influenced my work since. For example, Garry Davis, worked as creative director and graphic designer for a lot of skateboarding magazines, including Transworld Skateboarding. His editorial designs in which he combines both text and photography is very inspirational to me. This course has helped me gain an understanding of my own style and interests and has ensured me to be confident with my idea development.

What skills do you think are important to becoming a successful creative professional?

To be open-minded is really important when you want a creative career. Being exposed to a community of people who all have different backgrounds with different stories to tell really helps your development as an artist as you are constantly challenged by new ideas. Being challenged and taking risks will happen a lot, which is why it is important to be resilient. When working on developing ideas, it is important to reflect on your process and see what you can learn from, not only from your mistakes but also your successes.

What would you say to someone who is thinking about taking an online short course at UAL?

It is an incredible learning experience as you are challenged to think and create in ways you did not expect. You become more informed about the subject area you are interested in as you discover artists work, thinking creatively and executing ideas in a way which really helps you grow as an artist.

Which 3 words best describe your short course experience?

Insightful, daring and gratifying.

Montage of graphic design work including typography and mixed media photograph and type collage.

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