Guest Lectures

For the first term of the academic year ’11-’12 I was given the chance to do the lectures for the Communication and Visualisation unit of the BA Sound Design course at Ravensbourne College. I face this ‘task’ as a challenge; if there is a perfect presentation, i.e. one that achieves communication through meaningful visualisation, where else should it be found, if not at the lectures of the homonymous unit? Whether I made it or not, it’s your call.

In practical terms the unit’s goal is to offer the know-how to the students for making an online portfolio of their work. That will enable them to communicate who they are and what they do in a professional way. The unit’s curriculum covers some theory on user interface design, however the majority of the lectures is live demonstration of tools and methodologies for building an electronic portfolio. The free service offered by wordpress.com is demonstrated as a starting point.

The presentation below is from the first lecture of this unit, which was an introduction of the goal of this unit, the importance of having a website and a critique on portfolios of sound designers and music composers that are already out there. The first half of the slides is covered with notes of the talk that accompanied them.

The second lecture covers some fundamental user interface design principles and recommended methodologies. Hyperlinks to the resources used, are mentioned on the respective slides, through which more details about every ‘prinicple’ can be found. Simplicity is also one of these principles and at that point I felt obliged to make a tribute to John Maeda’s work on the subject. His book ‘The laws of Simplicity’ is one of my favourites and for that lecture I extracted from this book the laws that could also be appropriated on web design.

There is another lecture to follow, which will also be the last one. Due to the large number of students I was asked to give each lecture twice as the students are split into groups. The third and final lecture will be ammended on that blog-post as well.

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