by Lorna Harrington, MA fashion Kingston, UCA Volunteer
When commencing my final major project for my masters, it was natural for me, as a volunteer at UCA, to consider the archives as a starting point for my research.
As a fashion student, I have chosen to look at fashion education and how it has changed and how this is affecting industry.
This is a topic of particular interest, due to the recent cuts to both arts and education which have impacted on the study of fashion. Some of these themes have been explored within the archive itself. For example, Jigsaw, a magazine published by second year communication design students in 1976, discusses grants for foundation students as well as cuts to teaching staff.
I am particularly interested in looking through past prospectuses, minute books and newspaper clippings within the archive.
The images I find will not only be used for my written report but also to inspire my own designs for graphics and printed material relating to the topic of fashion and education. Some of my final major project outcomes will be in prospectuses, fashion show invites and branding for a new course.
To start with, I have been looking through material uploaded onto the UCA Archive Explored Flickr, to give me an idea of what material exists and what will be of use to me.
One of the many items of relevance to my project, is an interview with Audrey Cresswell, head of fashion featured in Jigsaw Magazine in 1976, which gives information about course content, number of students and the course’s links to industry.
As part of my research methodology, I will be interviewing key figures within the fields of fashion and education and so this particular piece will be helpful in forming my own questions for my interviewees. It will also give a sense of what has and hasn’t changed within fashion education.
I also hope to spend some of my final major project, becoming more involved in the archives through helping to curate online exhibitions as well as developing research guides.