When I first visited Edinburgh, I knew that it was somewhere I saw myself being. It is full of culture, and so many interesting and inspiring places. The course is very diverse and allows you to work very individually and focus on things you like doing. It incorporates lots of different skills such as textiles, graphic design, life drawing, illustration, puppetry and millinery, which is great for giving a well-rounded education in design for performance.
How did you come up with the idea for the costumes you presented in the ECA Fashion Show?
In total I designed 20 costumes this year, so I went through a process of initial research followed by fabric sampling and then design development. I would primarily focus on the text, so for the Snow Child I focused on the incredible weather descriptions that carry the story. This would then inspire any textile work, which I would then translate into particular characters, and develop further until I felt it worked successfully. There was a lot of quick paced decision making and constant thinking involved.
It’s hard to tell, as you are generally multitasking with other projects at the same time, probably each costume would have been completed in a couple of weeks.
Describe the creative process...
For the general colour schemes I would focus my designs on a colour pallet I chose from my research. For the Snow Child, being set in Alaska, I focused my colours on Alaskan Architecture, focusing on muted primary tones that are present in many of the houses in the small towns. The Snow child has strong links with magic realism, so I wanted my textiles to have a cross between natural materials and synthetics. However for Belleville Rendezvous I worked more with 1970s research, taking inspiration from various fashion styles such as flower power translating them into the characters. Each of my designs was there to represent the character, that being, the colours and textures were the main objectives in my work.
You're in your third year of your degree, which project or costume that you have designed is your favourite?
I’ve had my ups and downs with all three costumes, but generally I found the Triplet from Belleville Rendezvous the most fun to make. However, visually I think the boy (Garret) from the Snow Child was my favourite, as it was the first one I made and I was able to keep returning to it to add more or less.
To be happy, and to work in a highly motivating and creative environment.
What is your favourite thing about studying at the Edinburgh College of Art?
The people; I’ve met some of the best friends on this course. Being a class on twelve we have worked well as a team and pushed but supported each other continuously.
How did you feel when you saw your finished costumes being modeled in the ECA Fashion Show?
I felt relieved. It was nerve-racking experience but really exciting at the same time. It was great to not only see your own work come to life, but to see everyone else’s too.
Any advice for anyone wanting to study Performance Costume at the ECA?
Enjoy it, take it as it comes and don’t stop even when it gets tough. It’s a hard course with long hours and a lot of pressure. But it gets better, and it becomes a massive creative curve where you really build your skills and learn about yourself and what you like doing most. However, be aware that it is VERY expensive course to fund, with lots of added extras and material costs.
What's your favourite thing about Edinburgh?
This is tricky, I think probably the fact you can instantly get to incredible countryside. There are also lots of areas in Edinburgh to explore, and the architecture is beautiful. Most of all I always feel safe, which makes it such a great place to live in.