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News Staffs students shine at design competition

Student designers from Staffordshire University have scooped six awards in a national competition.

The winning students receiving their awards
Image: The winning students receiving their awards

I honestly didn't think I would actually win anything as I just wanted to make something simple and fun, but I was really surprised and happy to have won

Mai Duay, BA (Hons) Illustration

Students from across the BA (Hons) Graphic Design and BA (Hons) Illustration courses enjoyed huge success at the Brief Cases Solutions Awards – an initiative which aims to bridge the gap between academic study and commercial reality.

Judged by a panel of industry experts, the competition challenged students to create new designs in response to the brief ‘History and Future of Print’.

Illustration students Mai Duay, Molly Simpson and Rosie Woolliscroft plus Graphic Design student Becky Sidwell all won Gold awards in recognition of their work.

Meanwhile Jay Kingston, studying Illustration, won the People's Choice award for his project 'The Printed Deck',  an educational and entertaining way to highlight the rich history of playing cards. The 54 playing cards feature an intricate black and white design and are offered without colour to encourage colouring in and doodling by the user.

Mai Duay then went on to win the top prize of the night and was chosen from high-quality entries across the country as Overall Winner of the competition.  

Her project ‘Let’s explore: Woodblock’ is part of a series of activity books designed to educate children about the history of print in a fun and creative way. Each book comes with extra materials including stamp blocks and ink to encourage children to get hands on with arts and crafts.

Mai said: “I honestly didn't think I would actually win anything as I just wanted to make something simple and fun, but I was really surprised and happy to have won. Winning this competition helps to get my name out there in the industry.”

The students collected their prizes - which included certificates, books and edible goodies - at a special ceremony at Café de Paris in London and had the opportunity to network with industry professionals.

Matt Buckingham, Lecturer in Illustration, said: “Our students were all engaged in this industry led brief with real commercial clients, that challenged them to look at the ‘History and Future of Print’ and to design an innovative solutions in response.

“This is a great achievement for all the BA Hons Illustration and BA Hons Graphic Design student who took part – we are extremely proud!”

Discover more about studying at Staffordshire University at an Open Day – find more details and book your place here.

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