1. Introduction to Interdisciplinary Collaboration


How I found the process of group collaboration and entrepreneurship

The experience of working with creative interdisciplinary MA students, brought insight on adapting and learning to improvise with other disciplines. My perceptions and expectations from the team changed as time went by. We had some frustrations when some work was holding others up, however in the end for the greater good of the group, we all pulled together and worked hard to present a video presentation we were all proud of. 

What I have taken away from group collaboration for the real-world

This module as taught me to be firmer when it comes to my contributions. My gut feelings were to be more involved with the presentation, if I had contributed sooner, I would have had more considered polished visuals throughout the video, having said that I am happy with my work and our group achievements for ArtBar in the few weeks we had to do it in.

As the blog entries were added the oldest entry went to the bottom and newest to the top. They have been numbered 1-9 to read in sequential numerical order.

Introduction to Interdisciplinary Collaboration 

Prof Alex Coles and Dr. Janine Sykes began with an introduction to interdisciplinary collaboration, Alex went through his experience of collaboration first, he worked on a series of books called EP of which there are 3 series. His collaboration was with the stakeholders Steinberg Press, Catharine Rossi, and a design agency called Experimental Jetset, designers whose work he had admired before working with them, and this was a great opportunity.  Alex particularly liked their use of typography treatment, and this is what he was looking for in his cover design. Alex gave them a brief and some ideas of what he was looking for, but they came back with something a bit different which he approved of. The masthead identity for EP was something he discussed saying that ‘The red block was meant to have the letters EP sitting within it but it was sitting within the letters.’ The red box appears to be used like the letters EP crossbar sitting equidistantly within the E. Alex was demonstrating how you learn from different perspectives and achieve things better than you expect. From this collaboration he says he learned not to do a series as people are always asking when the next one is coming out, adding to the pressure.

Janine spoke about her collaboration with East Street Arts, Leeds where she worked on a project called ‘Home’ this was for an art hostel in Leeds and was done whilst she was pursuing her Ph.D. Janine started the research before the COVID-19 lockdown and during the lockdown, the realisation of the art hostel met with some obstacles. To continue progressing on the project they had to adapt their working processes, as the building couldn’t be ready for their deadlines. They created a virtual Artsteps visual of what the hostel would be like once completed. The art hostel hosts a mix of different artists’ work, each room is done by a different artist showing alternative themes. Janine was demonstrating flexibility and adaptability within collaborations when unexpected curve balls get in the way.

We were asked to research further into collaborative creativity and Janine recommended a book called Group Genius; The Creative Power of Collaboration by Keith Sawyer, I have now bought this book to read. We were also recommended to look at Doughnut Economics by Kate Raworth. I have skimmed a website on her and will read more on this.

Module Handbook Brief

“Working in small interdisciplinary groups, you will collectively devise a ‘start-up’ business or organisation. You will work on feeding your own practice into the module, while working in collaboration with others. You will be given a start-up brief in Week 4 of the module, at which point you will initiate your working group, communications, research and activities.

The context of the module is to consider how your practice connects with the current workplace for creative people. You will engage in research, making, reflective consideration of your practice and real-world outcomes.“

The Creative Innovation and Entrepreneurship MA module consists of practitioners from all creative disciplines, we have created groups to become an interdisciplinary collaboration.

Our group has 8 team members including Cathie McCartan (Fashion and textiles), Caitlyn Matthews (artist), Shinto Vincent (Architecture), Aqeel Zadi Batool (Graphic Design), Zaki Tanveer Alam (Interior Design), Damian Witkos (Graphic Design), Olivia Strettle (Photography), and me (Graphic Design).

This week we created an MS Teams group, and WhatsApp group, and set a meeting for Monday afternoon which I think will continue weekly. We all showcased our work to get to know each other’s skill sets so we can decide on who can do what, and went through ideas, we have chosen one we all agreed on.

Image souce: https://www.sternberg-press.com/

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