Rough Guide : collecting and recording

Overall, I felt that the Rough Guide Project was successful. This collaborative task saw 100+ textile students venture out into the city to map an area of London. The area that I was mapping was Soho, Covent Garden and Chinatown (and anything in-between).

The useful experience of walking around London and taking absolutely everything into consideration, taught me that anything can be used as inspiration. This project really enabled me to see opportunities in everything and that possibilitis are endless. The project allowed me to notice things that you wouldn’t normally see (on a typical day out in London) and draw, record & collect items to give a true represntation of that area. It wasn’t about taking the prettiest photos or the most accurate drawings, but rather making true observations of our surroundings and creating a map from it.

At first I found the drawing element to the project quite difficult. As far as I’m concerned traditional drawing is definitiely one of my weaker points and thus it can make me hesitant to draw my surroundings. However, as we got deeper into the project and spent more days exploring, I found other ways to “draw”, using rubbings, found objects and mark making as ways to map an area. Photography is also a great tool to document a journey / place.

If I were to do this again, I would think about having a theme to the book. Looking at the work of others I was inspired by the people who had chosen one specific thing to look at and documented it when they saw it all over London. I could have focused on a particular object, or a certain colour. I think this would have added depth to the work. I also feel that because I was so focused on finishing the sketchbook some of the pages were a little rushed, so if doing it again I would slow down and take the appropriate amount of time to complete each page / drawing.

I really enjoyed the collating and binding stage of the project. Working together to decide on an order and which pages work together was highly effective. The binding of the book was very interesting, although I have made books before I have never bound in that way. I was also very pleased and impressed with the finish and quality of the book.

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