Athmosphären-management. 1. Semester

White Russian
Oct 22, 2014 · 7 min read

When I was admitted to a bachelor course in Communication Design I thought that I would look around, assess my skills and move on to a master’s course straight away. However, the first two weeks proved that I was much more of a freshman than anyone else there. This post will help me generalize all the new stuff I faced.

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dok12.de

The department has three majors – Communication Design, Photo Design and Industrial Design. There are about 80 first year students aged from 18 to 40, many of whom are people of the same age as me, who had already studied, graduated, had a job, and decided to change everything. The first semester is designed to sort of teach yesterday’s schoolchildren to study hard, concentrate on work, build project teams, conduct research, understand the systematic basis of things and discipline. It turned out that everyone had to learn it and get used to it.

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This how my classes look like

During the first semester, all subjects are compulsory and it is not allowed to miss a single class. Later, one will be able to manage priorities, for example, to make a web-site for the department or publish a magazine, but as for the 1st semester – learn to learn only.

There are five modules that we have to complete in six months just to learn to speak the same language as our professors do. I have never had any weakness for design and got into it not because I wanted to work as a graphic designer, but I must say it is really fascinating. Let us now see what I mean.

Design Basics

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For example, this week is dedicated to collecting contrasting lines. So, every day I spend 15–20 minutes on this sketch-book. This will continue for a year, but he hopes that after this year it will just become an ever-lasting habit for us. Once a week, we work in groups of five, share what we have found during a week, think of our findings and their meanings, and present our group’s success in a two-minute report. In these moments, one can realize how differently various people think and that if they are interested in cars only it does not mean that they are not sensitive to implicit processes. The semester will finish with a 4-week individual project; the topics for these projects will come out during our semester research work.

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Right now the most important result of this research is our understanding of the fact that there are two opposite actions in design: creation of the concept and process-oriented work. In other words, first you think what you are going to do, and when you start to do it you do not think at all and just use your intuition simply surrendering to the workflow. So, we are taught to switch between these two conditions.

Drawing

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In the afternoon, I talk with the coolest guy in the world who teaches drawing, but in fact teaches us to get to know each other, quietly watch things and draw not a face but its expression, not a human, but some of his or her feature. For example, some girl looks like a child, but I draw her strong and concentrated. In the end, it is all not about anatomy, but about something lively and very interesting.

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Communication and Design Theory

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Typography

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Interaction Design

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My proffesor highly recommends this book

We are going to make a model of incoming-outgoing correspondence of a typical first-year student, the amount of paint for screen printing in the workshop, and the principles of dividing students into groups. It sounds crazy, but this is how it is. Moreover, in order to come up with these topics, I still did not do anything out of my “fear of a blank sheet of paper” concerning everything connected to infographics, in comparison to which only programming is more difficult for me.

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And for dessert, as if aware, they always leave half an hour for Processing, and I start to think that maybe I’m not entirely hopeless in it.

In general, I think all these studies will be about the ability to ask questions, be inquisitive and sometimes even boring, forget about the idea that design is drawing nice pictures, learn to think using systems and structures, look at life from a different angle, and only after that do design. So, I’d better go and visualize something.

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I also leave a few links about my department, professors and projects that we have.

fak12.de

monta.gs

docmagazin.de

20plusx.de

ralphammer.de

White Russian ENG

Blog about my life in Germany

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