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UC students showcase Singapore inspiration

Vanessa Lam

16 December 2016: Drawing inspiration from a study tour to Singapore, students from the University of Canberra’s Faculty of Arts and Design showed off their skills in designing and building market stalls and handmade items at a recent exhibition.

The 22 students from industrial design, graphic design, and media arts and production spent two weeks in Singapore in July for a study tour investigating product packaging and design.

The market night, ‘Inspired by Singapore’ was part of the ‘Inspired by Study Tours’ exhibition, which showcased previous faculty study tours to Japan, Shanghai, China and Singapore.  

The event was held at Anvil Studio and Gallery at the Hamlet in Braddon in October, with students displaying and selling Singaporean inspired handmade items including t-shirts, tote bags, leather wristbands and jewellery.

The study tour was organised as part of the Packaging Design and Environmental Graphics and Global Design Strategy units.

“Packaging design focuses on the 3D aspects of graphic design and challenges students to work with materials, production methods and to develop entrepreneurial skills in real world type situations,” unit convener Lisa Scharoun said.

It’s the first time media arts and production students have taken part in the study tour, where they documented the experience making four short films about the tour, as part of the Special Studies in Communication unit.

The films were also shown at the exhibition, with media arts and production student Jack Ferguson describing the trip as ‘easily the best experience of my university life’.

“It was amazing. We spent two weeks submersed in another culture, where we got to meet so many different people. Everyday we got to work with the camera, which was what we wanted to do.”

Second year student Josh Parisotto said it was the first time the students had worked on a project of this scale.

“We hadn’t filmed anything like this before, sort of ‘run and gun’, really getting in there and just filming. We learnt a lot of stuff about on the go filming and everyday something was happening which was great,” Mr Parisotto said.

During the trip the students attended workshops and visited cultural sites, museums and design studios and factories, which specialised in packaging, production and branding.

The students also had the chance to collaborate with students from Nanyang Polytechnic, and the Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong to create concepts for market stalls, products and packaging solutions.

“The students were friendly and accommodating,” third-year graphic design student Khue Deighton said.

Graphic design student Nina Davis agreed, “When we got into the design tasks it was great because we were all on a common ground that made it easy to work together.”

“The exhibition and night market was a fantastic way for students to showcase all the hard work they accomplished inspired by their time in Singapore,” Dr Scharoun said.

The students also encouraged others who may be thinking of going on a similar study tour to take the opportunity.

“It was really fun, it was pretty intense at times but that was part of what made it great,” Ms Davis said.

Dr Scharoun said the study tours are a fantastic way for students to experience what it’s like to work in a cross-cultural setting.

“Students gain key work-ready skills such as ability to adapt to, understand and work with people from other cultures significantly different from their own,” she said.

To find out more about our Faculty Led Programs visit our website.

Watch the video Mr Ferguson and Mr Parisotto produced from the trip below: