Hot New Things — Abraar Patel, Unitec
Welcome to Hot New Things 2018 – an opportunity to profile a selection of the top design graduates coming out of our tertiary institutions. This week, we speak with Abraar Patel from Unitec.
Bachelor of Creative Enterprise
You completed your full time studies at the end of 2017. Can you tell us what your final year project was about and what you focussed on?
2017 was a very exciting and important year not only was it the final year of my bachelors but it was the year I would use as a platform to launch myself into the industry. During my final year I worked across multiple projects that involved animation, video, print and 3D design.
My “main” project was a manifestation of graffiti type in 3D space, during the project I worked with both local and international graffiti writers to produce a 3D experimental alphabet using sketches the artist produced. The project was a natural progression after working on a 3D animated project with graffiti artist Berst, during the time I had just found my passion for type and so I went on to create a fun letter series for my Instagram but after an overwhelming response I decided to take the project further.
How has what you’ve recently been working on influenced your design process and what momentum does it bring to your practice?
During the course of my studies the process of collaboration was a big factor that surrounded the projects over the 3 years. I have come to thoroughly enjoy tackling design challenges with other designers and understanding that in this industry working with others is inevitable. My latest project also taught me the process of experimentation and not being afraid to push things into new boundaries although 3D graffiti type isn’t a new concept the way I tackled the process really produced something I personally loved¨ which is strange for me as I’m my biggest critic.
What were some of your most exciting discoveries?
The beauty of 5k Retina iMacs
And also some of the challenges along the way?
In the realm of collaboration and team projects dealing with people was a big challenge. Understanding the process of resolving a situation within a team based environment without allowing your own ego or emotions to get in the way was a big hurdle to get around.
Concept generating was always a difficult process for me overthinking briefs and getting into very long creative blocks was a common occurrence, but during my final year I came to understand that the best ideas come from what you most love or what you’re most passionate to speak about. This finally gave me a purpose to my briefs and not just designing something for the sake of it being “cool eye candy”.
What did you love doing most?
After designing at a desk for so long I came to love making physical things. Digital design gets very straining at times so being able to get into more traditional crafts such as screen printing was a relief.
Where do you go to find inspiration websites, resources, designers etc?
Although it’s a very cliché answer my biggest inspiration was my surroundings. Having such talented individuals that studied alongside me, inspiration was plentiful. Also having access to Behance and good ole’ Pinterest was a help.
Why did you choose to study at your design school and what do you feel you can take away now that you’ve completed your course?
It was my last resort after missing portfolio submission dates for most tertiary institutes. Apart from my certificate the course has given me the opportunity to develop, experiment, understand and learn my craft. It was a great platform to ready myself for the industry.
Where to next for you? What does 2018 hold?
Hopefully new opportunities to connect with new people and work on new exciting projects. Also a job, I’m currently freelancing and actively looking for a position within a creative studio.