We began our long awaiting journey as budding Illustration and Graphic Design students on an average Monday in the midst of the chilly September days. As a first year illustration student at London Metropolitan University mixed amongst many others just like myself (as well as graphic design students), we were given many talks on the concept of communication and design, most importantly, creating something to narrate visually to you yourself, and to the masses.
One of the activities we had to take part in was very unexpected, to say the least, and to put it quite simply, was a not-so-easy-as-it-seems ball game. Though unexpected, it communicated a very important message to us that actually had a lot more to do with the arts than we had assumed. The game was simple, we were split into teams, and the objective was to throw a ball into a cone that was placed near to you, for 5 points, or into a cone placed a little further away, for 10 points. Despite a very unsuccessful session of only one person actually managing to land the ball in the cone, the message was soon clear that those who chose to throw the ball into the closer cone had somewhat exposed themselves as a safe, average-achieving (to put it more kindly, one who fears failure), comfort seeking person, and those who chose the further cone were much more daring, success oriented and sought a higher reward at the expense of a higher risk of failure. In the words of a student who was questioned by Adrian, to go ‘Above and Beyond’ is the goal, its better to choose the option that is more difficult, that requires more trust in yourself, more work, has a higher risk of failure, but always has a higher reward.
Learning How to Learn
We then moved onto aspects of learning, and the three main types of learner…
Essentially, we learnt that each person has a naturally preferred way of learning based on our senses, that comes easiest to them, and dictates their learning methods throughout life. Each learner may have a different distinctive personality that matches the type they are, for example Kinesthetic learnersare commonly fidgety, very tactile, and hold things to better understand them. Auditory learners are easily distracted by noises, have little interest in reading avidly, and listen through sounds and music to learn better. Visual learners are very sensitive to appearance and layouts while learning, often fond of lists, colours and pictures, and often have heightened focus while watching or seeing. They are also often the type to remember the face but not the name.
With all of this information being fed to us, we were left to reflect upon ourselves, to combine our knowledge how we each personally learn best and the motivation to always go above and beyond in hopes of creating and designing visual artworks that communicate to us, the teachers, and the rest of the planet out there.